Our newest Travel Yogi, Rebecca Butler, is all about choosing joy — and is taking her infectiously joyful spirit on retreat to Aruba in February. We asked her to share her story and her inspiration behind the retreat, which you can read below… Sign up for a week with this joy-flled yogini in Aruba where can play with a handstand or two, soak up the sunshine + beach, fine-tune your SUP yoga skills, practice the joy of happiness and spontaneously dance and guffaw with glory.
Itʼs 2007. As a twenty-something single mom I was entering my only place of refuge, my favorite yoga studio in Austin, TX, after a grueling day of corporate America. That was when I saw a flyer for an upcoming retreat with the yoga studio community to a tropical locale.
Hmmm, I wonder if I could go on that?, the question popped up out of the blue. It surprised me. And then, a longing stirred deep within me. A tiny voice said one word: Please.
Seconds later, another voice chimed in: No, you canʼt. You canʼt afford it; youʼre too fat in a bathing suit; you wonʼt be able to hang with their schedule so youʼll make a fool of yourself. Best just to stay put and keep working. Then the familiar, long list of “not- enoughs” began to ring in my ears: not thin enough, not strong enough, not wealthy enough…
But the yearning wouldnʼt quiet so easily.
A week went by. The temptation of the retreat still lingered.
The next time I entered the studio, I had a rare, brilliant moment of courage and before the negative voice could rise, I paid the down payment to join the retreat.
Despite all of my fears, I went. I had the time of my life. I made new friends, I discovered that I was stronger than I knew, and I began to use two infectious, life changing words: I can. Afterwards, I set about transforming my life into something I am outrageously proud of…
And now several years later, I have this incredible opportunity to lead my own retreat via The Travel Yogi to the scintillating destination of Aruba! I am beyond ecstatic. On this retreat, weʼll indulge… Weʼll partake in delicious yoga each morning and afternoon, sequenced throughout the week around my inspirational curriculum of Choosing Joy, which is my guiding principle for leading a full, healthy, robust life of love, gratitude and adventure. During the day, youʼll have the option to lounge at the beach, take a stand- up paddle board lesson, nap, hit the pool bar for a pina colada, get a spa treatment, shop or any combination thereof. After our afternoon yoga session, weʼll eat delectable meals and spend the evening in fellowship with like minded souls likely over a glass of wine or sparkling water — whatever suits your fancy. That is what this is all about after all, your desires, yes, yours; because as youʼll begin to understand on this journey, what you want in life matters. It simply does. Come take the time to get acquainted with what that truly is, while experiencing a transformative journey surrounded by other spiritual gangsters intent on living life to itʼs fullest, having fun, and relaxing all at the same time. Meet new friends. Become rejuvenated, restored and aroused about life all at once.
Warning: This retreat is not intended for those looking to whine, self-loathe or wrap themselves in a cocoon of judgment. It is only recommended for those eager to revel in an exotic location, spontaneously dance and guffaw with glory.
No, you do not have to know how to stand on your hands or even touch your toes to enjoy this retreat. But you will leave stronger and more flexible, no matter what your level of practice.
No, you do not have to memorize the yoga sutras or be able to speak sanskrit to thrive on this retreat. But you will likely acquire a new level of understanding of your own emotional and spiritual well being.
You are enough, exactly the way you are right now. This retreat will show you the way to your joy — a deep seated, lasting, true feeling of joy emanating from your core. Weʼll journal, meditate and combine asana to tap into that which already brings you joy and find even more sources. And yes, you will understand that yogis indeed do know how to have fun.
The only requirement for attending this retreat is a willingness to feel, embrace and embody joy — true, deep, everlasting joy. What better place to discover your joy than the exotic locale of Aruba!