This is the time of year with the recent excesses of the holidays, that many of us make resolutions to be better people; kinder to ourselves, kinder to others, and to go on a journey of self-improvement whether mentally or physically. As every gym club knows, those resolutions about physical improvement rarely last beyond the end of January, largely because you're doing it on your own and it's hard to keep motivated. So the idea of a group retreat where you can focus on yourself with an fully qualified coach, and get group support to overcoming your barriers to success seems like a great idea. Throw in the pretty Isle of Wight as the location, and it's a winning combination.
If you want some time to yourself, time to relax, refresh, refocus and improve your wellbeing then these retreats are the perfect way to do so.
Overview The transformational holistic wellbeing taster retreat for women run by Deborah Tarrant from Live well, Be well, Work well, took place in a lovely, quiet, seaside village called Seaview on the Isle of Wight over a long weekend (Friday afternoon to Monday midday) in October 2022. It included healthy and tasty vegetarian food and accommodation in a coach house set in a secluded 7 acre ground gated property, with the sea literally at the end of the drive to the grounds. It has its own tennis court and heated swimming pool (May-September). There were a variety of activities offered including holistic wellbeing, healthy eating, exercise, relaxation and time for personal reflection. The retreats are created for small groups so there is a more personalised and intimate atmosphere.
We asked the participants about their experience over the weekend and this is what they had to say:
Highlights "For me the sea swim was immense. I love swimming, especially in a warm sea, but I have never swum in UK waters. I couldn’t face the cold. However, I have been very interested in the benefits of cold water swimming but have never had the courage to do it. Deborah gave clear instructions prior in terms of safety, what to wear, what to take, how to approach it, how to breathe. I felt confident standing staring at the beautiful sea, but as I took my first few steps into the water my confidence faded away. I was shaking. Almost in tears. Deborah calmly took my hand, helped me get my breathing under control and together we took step after step into the cold water and when I was ready, I pushed off and swam. The exhilaration was incredible and as everyone always says, it’s lovely when you are in! The experience was life-changing. The confidence it gave me was absolutely immense. I felt empowered. If I can do that, I can do anything."
Structure of the well-being weekend "Deborah`s relaxed approach was noticeable in the fact that it was not noticeable, if that makes any sense. I feared that the retreat would be quite regimented, with a “right, it is 10 o'clock now, time for …”. But the activities all gently flowed from one to another, without any obvious forcing, allowing us to have plenty of time to reflect and breathe.
There was a schedule, which was helpfully shared in advance, was helpful in we knew what to expect and what we needed for the activity. There was a carefully though out variety of talks, active and quiet times for rest and reflection and informal discussion. Although Deborah is very flexible and skilfully adapted the days depending on our need and interest, and how much we wanted to do or talk!"
"At the outset of the weekend Deborah introduced the concept of ‘The ‘why’. This activity was to spend some time reflecting not on what we want to work towards, but on why. It was a new but very helpful concept to help us explore the reasons for what we do. Personally, I wasn’t able to answer this over the retreat weekend, but it has stayed with me since, and I often come back to it. It has allowed me to shift my thinking from what goals I have, to why do I have any goals at all! It has made me consider what my values are and I certainly feel I am now getting closer to understanding what I am looking for and why."
The Setting on the Isle of Wight
"Exploring the Isle of Wight was a bonus. I had no idea how beautiful it was. We explored Seaview, a delightful village, with a very nice café, good for vegetarians, vegans and gluten-free. We also took a drive to Ventnor. The walk along the coast took my breath away and again, we stopped at a café, right on the beach, and had a very welcome hot chocolate while watching the waves crash against the rocks. I cannot underestimate how therapeutic that was. Breathing in the sea air, hearing the crashing waves, all the senses being used, helping one to be fully present and feel the peace that it brings."
If you are looking for time and space to reflect on where you are and think about where you want to be, this retreat will certainly help you. It will help you to build your toolkit by giving you knowledge about how you can best look after your physical, mental and emotional self and give you the time to think about how you can put these practices into practice! A huge plus of this retreat is the opportunity to spend time on an island. And if you would like to try cold-sea swimming but know you will need help, then Deborah is someone who can really help you.
Future dates for these and similar retreats on the IOW
24th-27th March 2023 ‘March into Spring’ Retreat
21st-14th April 2023 'Spring Reset' – Wellness & Fitness Retreat
12th – 15th May 2023 ‘May Be Well’ Retreat
Retreat costs range from £545- 745 depending on accommodation.
Discounts of 10% available for bookings made in January and return guests
Deborah is an Executive & Wellbeing Coach and Consultant. She has an extensive career in people leadership and workforce matters and executive director in NHS organisations. She has developed her own bespoke coaching, wellbeing, and personal services .
Be Well, Live Well, Work Well provides transformational coaching, workshops and retreats. Coaching services include executive, professional and personal development, wellbeing, and fitness. Workshops cover Introduction to Wellbeing, Women’s Wellbeing, Healthy lifestyle and living a balanced life. Deborah is a qualified fitness instructor and yoga breath coach.
She provides group workshops and 1:1 coaching on breathing techniques which with regular practice can improve many aspects of health and wellbeing.
For more information on all services and prices contact
Be Well, Live Well, Work Well