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What to Pack on Your Self-Care Retreat

What to Pack on Your Self-Care Retreat

Picture this: a few days’ retreat in a serene, balmy setting where you can spend time getting in touch with yourself. It’s a pretty picture, and one that lots of people need. Plus, the Philippines is home to a myriad world-renowned holiday spas. Whether you’re opting for a retreat in the heart of the city or you’re going on a getaway in a more remote area, there’s no doubt that this is going to be a special trip. So do it with complete mindfulness and set your intentions from the get-go, and make sure to bring these along with you:

Mindfulness aids


More often than not, going on a retreat is a way for you to disconnect from the everyday hustle of work, home, and socializing. It’s necessary for you to be able to take a step back from all of that, but more importantly, you determine the reasons behind your retreat. Is it for healing, self-growth, or to better yourself? Whatever your reasons are, commit to it, and set them as your goals.

One way to do this is by practicing mindfulness in all your activities. From waking up to stretching and meditating, do it with complete focus and mindfulness. Living 101’s list of meditation tools recommends the use of a sound machine that can produce non-distracting, calming, and soothing sounds. A sound machine could mimic nature sounds, or even play white noise to help you enter a state of relaxation more effectively. You can even download mindfulness apps to take you through guided meditations, allowing you to channel into your thoughts on your retreat.

Sleeping essentials


What’s a retreat without restorative sleep? Hectic daily schedules could lead you to have bad sleeping habits, and you can rid yourself of those on this trip. Learn to value sleep as part of your daily healing and self-care routine.

That said, several people struggle to get good sleep. A BBC article on getting better sleep identifies two must-haves: essential oils and weighted blankets. Essential oils have been shown to have calming effects which facilitate better sleep. For one, the lavender essential oil is proven to help aid sleep with its soothing benefits; cinnamon oil is also said to have a cleansing and healing effect on the body. Another newcomer in the self-care sector is weighted blankets. They’ve become popular since they’ve demonstrated anxiety-relieving effects by triggering comforting physiological responses, similar to ones triggered by hugs.

Skincare products


While this is a retreat and it does give you respite from your normal routine, you still need to do your daily skincare routine. Beyond making your skin healthier and clearer, maintaining a skincare regimen also contributes to sound mental health, as writer Jessica Migala points out. She says the regular routine gives you a sense of stability, and the act of pampering yourself triggers the release of mood-boosting neurochemicals in the brain.

Since not all skincare products are made the same, it’s necessary for you to read the fine print on products before packing them with you— look for natural ingredients and extracts. PrettyMe’s review of natural collagen supplements highlights how supplements containing glutathione can help the skin heal and recover. Pine bark extract, ascorbic acid, and other oxidants can also serve as an added layer of protection from the sun and free radicals. When choosing skincare products, it’s best to steer clear of too many synthetic ingredients.

What to Pack on Your Self-Care Retreat

Your journal


A self-care retreat lets you spend time with your thoughts, so why not jot these down? Expressing yourself through a journal is especially helpful when you go on a social media detox, too.

List down things you’ve learned about yourself, or even record your best memories. The thing about journaling is that you don’t need to be self-conscious about what you write. There’s no fear of judgment or retribution, it’s an effective way for you to release pent-up stress and to simply let your thoughts flow. This may even be a habit you can develop even after your self-care retreat is over; this will greatly improve your sense of self and your overall well-being.

You’ve weathered the toughest times, so go ahead and take time to unwind on a well-deserved self-care retreat— and pack all the essentials!



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