Summer Retreat August 2020
Healing your inner critic
Making peace with the inner critic and developing a kind voice
At the inspiring Benedictine convent of “Hurtebise” in the Ardennes. Retreat partially in silence.
For people who already practice mindfulness or yoga.
With mindfulness trainers Steve Savels and Berenice Boxler.
Join us in a transformative retreat in the beautiful convent of Hurtebise in the forests of the Belgian Ardennes. Together we will explore the inner voice, that can be harsh and hurtful, but also deeply nourishing and inspiring. We will take time to slow down, unplug, relax and learn to listen deeply to ourselves – and how to make friends with ourselves.
Take a break from the stress of your busy life with all its challenges and demands, and immerse yourself in the tranquillity of this sacred and beautiful space. Enjoy mindful movement/yoga, guided meditations, reflection and group work as well as walking in the forests around the convent. In the breaks you can also listen to the deeply touching chanting of the Benedictine nuns.
The retreat will partially take place in silence. We will have moments of contemplation and quietness, but also immerse into an interactive and reflective process of finding this kind voice inside of us that can be our guiding inner light.
The accommodation is in simple, but comfortable single rooms with shared bathrooms.
First find peace within yourself, then you can also bring peace to others
This sounds like a cliché, but it is very true. We can only give what is inside of us, therefore we should aim at developing a kind and respectful inner voice toward our own experiences and perceived flaws. Only when we are able to let ourselves be as we are, we can bring acceptance and kindness to others.
The inner critic, our constant stream of inner commentary, has been active since our childhood – and over time we develop rather stable thinking patters of how we see ourselves and the world. “I am … fit / lazy / a good cook / always late / hard-working / etc.” Everybody has these or other opinions about themselves. But are they true? When did you start forming these opinions? Do they influence how you behave and speak? And are they still helpful?
We will start a journey of uncovering our thinking patterns and perceptions and begin to question them. It is a tremendously healing process to bring understanding, compassion and reflection to our own thinking, and from there start developing a kind and compassionate inner voice, that can become our inner nurturer. Join this healing journey with us!
What does a retreat look like?
Being away from day-to-day demands and all the external chatter means time to reflect, to reconnect with your true self and with nature. When the part of you that wants to be in control and that is afraid of change, is dominant, you are cut off from your deeper wisdom and intuition. But if you rest and create space to tap into your creative energy, you can get in touch with what truly matters and what kind of life you would really like to lead.
During the retreat, there will be free time to enjoy walks through the surrounding fields, or simply relax in or around the monastery.
You will be enjoying the company of like-minded international people. Two trainers will be taking care of your wellbeing and your own journey.
People have reported that long after the retreat they could still feel the benefits of it, and that this nourishing feeling goes on for quite a while.
The retreat will be given with English instructions.
Ideally, you already have some experience with mindfulness and/or yoga. If you are completely new to mindfulness or yoga, get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will contact you to discuss this further.
You will be enjoying
- Different forms of meditation and yoga.
- Reflection, group work and interactive practices.
- Talks and inspiring teaching on the topic.
- Practices for deep relaxation.
- Simple and nourishing food, prepared with love by the nuns.
- The sacred and healing energy of an active convent.
- Free time to enjoy walks or simply relaxing in the beautiful surroundings.
- A group of likeminded people with whom you can share experiences.
- Single and comfortable rooms.
- Periods of silence to encourage reflection and relaxation.
- Possibility for individual talks with the trainers.
Some benefits of a mindfulness retreat
- Tapping into your inner resources contributes to feeling more rested, relaxed and calm.
- Learning how to gain greater physical and psychological wellbeing.
- Powerful new insights to take back into your daily life.
- Practical tools how to establish a daily mindfulness practice when you go back home.
- A new sense of inner freedom and the ability to see more clearly what really matters to you.
- Self-compassion and being on your own side.
- Having an idea of how to stop some unhelpful habits in your life and how to replace them by more useful ones.
- The ability to respond more skilfully to life's challenges when they arise.
- Finding a way to peace and wholeness in this busy stressful world we live in.
The retreat will take place in the convent of Hurtebise, an active Benedictine convent in the Belgian Ardennes close to Saint-Hubert.
The location is a haven of peace and calm. You can participate in the worship ceremonies of the nuns and enjoy their deep concentration and love.
Tea, coffee, fruit and snacks are available throughout the retreat.
The rooms are single rooms with shared bathrooms.
Around the monastery there are many beautiful walks through the fields and woods.
The retreat will start on Monday 24 August at 11.00, and end on Thursday 27 August 15 July at 15.00.
Sample programme for a full day
8.00 – 9.00: Mindful movement & morning meditation
9.00 – 10.00: Breakfast
10.00 – 11.00: Guided sitting meditation + dialogue
11.00 – 11.30: Tea/coffee
11.30 – 12.30: Guided walking & sitting meditation
12.30 – 13.30: Lunch
13.30 – 15.00: Reflection and interactive practices
15.00 – 15.30: Tea/coffee
15.30 – 16.30: Silent walking & sitting meditation
16.30 – 16.45: Tea/coffee
16.45 – 18.00: Guided sitting meditation & teaching
18.00 – 19.30: Dinner
19.30 – 21.00: Meditation, teaching & relaxation
This is an indicative programme, the actual timing might change (except starting and end times). The final programme will be displayed at the location.
Steve Savels is managing partner and trainer at Brussels Mindfulness. He is an experienced trainer with a speciality on self-compassion and has led several retreats and days of mindfulness. People appreciate his gentle and calm style with lots of humour.
Berenice Boxler is a mindfulness trainer at Brussels Mindfulness with a specialisation in mindful communication and relational mindfulness, aiming to bring mindfulness into the family and to interrelational context.
Rate for the retreat of 4 days with meals and accommodation in a single room: € 550
We encourage you to register as soon as possible to secure your place.
Registrations will close on Wednesday 19 August 2020 or whenever the retreat is fully booked.
Please check our terms and conditions.
Please fill out the form below in order to register for the Summer Retreat on 24 to 27 August 2020.
Your answers to these questions are important for the trainer to be able to admit you to the retreat.
The information you provide will be treated confidentially and will never be shared with third parties.
We will get in touch with you if we have any questions, so please provide the phone number on which we can most easily reach you.
Do not hesitate to get in touch with us if you would have any questions.
For administrative and practical questions, please contact email@example.com.
If you want to discuss something directly with the trainers, here's how you can contact us:
Steve Savels - firstname.lastname@example.org.
Berenice Boxler - email@example.com.
Many thanks for your registration and we are looking forward to meeting you at the retreat.