In September I had the luxurious pleasure of going on a 40th birthday trip with my Dad and Step-Mom, as well as my step-sister, who also turned 40. I have visited day spas, and of course, they are one of my favorite indulgences. But I had never had the opportunity to stay at a spa resort.
Things in my life have been crazy as of late. I rarely get enough sleep, I am always feeling behind, I am way too over-scheduled, I am plagued by perfectionism, and my body finally started to tell me I can no longer live like that. It has been time for me to make some changes; I wanted some time to evaluate my life and prioritize. Miraval Spa is a perfect place to go to get some rest, relaxation, incredible (but oh-so-healthful) food, exercise, and time to meditate. It was the perfect opening event to my new perspective on life–one in which I harangue myself less, embrace more, and actually enjoy my life as I believe I should.
This is an all-inclusive spa, so breakfast, lunch, a smoothie bar, afternoon snacks, and dinner is included. During the day you can enjoy a spa treatment (one a day is included), attend exercise classes, learn new skills like yoga or meditation, or meet with a variety of experts on skin care, stress management, mindful eating, etc. Honestly, there were so many things to do it was difficult to pick. They also have special challenge opportunities like ropes courses, climbing, hikes, and the famous Miraval Equine experience. Since I was mostly hoping to gain new insight into meditation, balance, and mindfulness I attended classes like Yogic breathing, stress management, and Chi Gong. I also tried to get in 1-2 exercise classes a day as well, just to get moving and remember that once I get in the groove, I actually enjoy fitness.
Mindfulness is the main focus at Miraval. Our modern style of living is not in the least conducive to mindfulness. We constantly rush about from activity to activity, rarely enjoying the moment, and only feeling productive if we constantly multi-task. All about the Miraval grounds are stacked rocks to remind the patrons of balance and mindfulness.
Since returning, I have been trying to make a conscious effort to slow down, and to not do so many things at once. I mean really, are we that much more effective doing so much at the same time? I get so frazzled that I forget what I am doing, get sleepy, and can’t focus on anything let alone five things at once. Why do we do this to ourselves?
Here is an example of what they mean. Here at the labyrinth you can practice meditative walking. You coordinate your steps with diaphragmatic breathing, focusing only on what you see and feel as you walk. The goal is to not focus on any one thought, but to let them flow in and out of your mind as you walk. This can be practiced while exercising, enjoying nature, or even walking from cubicle to cubicle in a work environment.
The design of the spa is made to meld nature and man made structures. Buildings are tucked away, and beautiful desert foliage lines stone paths. We saw many little critters as we walked from place to place, as well as beautiful desert plans and flowers.
Once I was a little more familiar with my surroundings, it was easy to practice mindfulness as I walked from place to place.
Please enjoy reminicing with me……
This resort is pricey, but I would like to someday go back again. If I ever lose the last of my baby weight, maybe I will head back as a treat to myself. It really is a lovely place, and I experienced several paradigm shifts. In other posts I will share my hiking pictures and food experiences.
Of course, the best part of being at Miraval was being with people I love in such a relaxed atmosphere. I will always remember our lengthy dinner conversations and lounge time in the exquisite “quiet room” in the spa. Hmmm……..I get all dreamy just thinking about it.