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Self-Care Is Not Selfish

Last updated November 9, 2022

At first glance, the idea of self-care may seem like some new-age mumbo-jumbo. But the truth of the matter is that everyone needs to practice self-care in order to replenish those stores of mental, physical and emotional energy. Truly—self-care is not selfish, it’s necessary—and can affect every aspect of our lives, from our work life to our social life and to our personal life. 

It’s no secret that when we take care of ourselves, we’re also taking care of our loved ones and our community. Think of it this way: self-care helps you refill your cup so you don’t run dry. Just like securing your own oxygen mask on an airplane, you have to take care of yourself before you can take care of others.

What Is Self-Care?

We seem to be in a collective burnout, thanks to feeling overwhelmed and overburdened by unsustainable workloads and the pressures of boundless productivity—resulting in more people turning to wellness and self-care practices for solutions.

But what is self-care? Is it a face mask, a bubble bath, a glass of wine paired with dark chocolate after a long day? Do these so-called self-care practices even quell our burnout?

In her article, Self-care is Expensive and Lonely. It Doesn’t Have to Be,” author Rina Raphael explains that real self-care is not a DIY activity. Self-care is something that is integrated within a collective or communal structure. 

Raphael discovers that younger generations like Gen Z seem to have gotten the memo about human connection, agreeing that their social life affects their wellness as much as their physical health. In fact, current top self-care practices do not even heavily rely on consumerism. These include: exercise/walking, listening to music and reading.

So, yes, bath bombs, face masks, ice rollers and crystals might fit some people’s idea of self care…

Why It’s Time for a Self-Care Retreat

nimmo bay wellness waterfall

That said, retreats may be a better bang for your buck, integrating experiences such as a respite from burnout, meaningful social interactions, exercise (yoga, hiking, etc.), meditation, healthy eating, better sleep and time spent outdoors in nature.

A self-care retreat is an intentional vacation that aims to provide experiences that alleviate stress and improve emotional well-being. These retreats use a variety of experiences, such as yoga and meditation, to allow individuals to focus on their own emotional health. Research has found that self-care retreats can be effective at improving symptoms of stress, anxiety and depression—thus leaving a lasting impression. 

Self-care doesn’t have to be expensive or lonely, nor is self-care actually selfish. Of course, it’s all about you, yet it’s also for the greater good. 

We share below a selection of self-care retreats in beautiful locations all over the world. New York, Costa Rica, Bali and Thailand—here we come.

Well, what are you waiting for? 

4 Self-Care Retreats to Nourish Your Soul

1. New York | Honor’s Haven Retreat

honor's haven qigong class
honor's haven kiva garden

Looking for a beautiful and serene place to stay where you can also enjoy some wellness activities? Look no further than Honor’s Haven and their well-being stays!  Perfect for solo travelers, couples, groups and families, their accommodations offer a chance to relax and rejuvenate in stunning surroundings. 

Included in your stay are dinner and breakfast, yoga and qigong classes, daily activities, access to private hiking trails, multiple gardens and their ECO Healing Park. The retreat’s outdoor facilities have been designed with specific energy connections, allowing guests to slip away from the distractions of everyday life. You can also expand your experience pool-side, pedal boating on the lake or working up a sweat on the court, Honor’s Haven offers a variety of amenities for a perfect self-care retreat getaway!

2. Costa Rica | The Retreat Costa Rica

the retreat costa rica nature hike swing

Nature is one of the most powerful stress relievers we have available to us and at The Retreat Costa Rica, they offer world-class, nature-based retreats to help you rejuvenate your mind, body and soul. 

Their all-inclusive pricing includes three delicious meals at the on-site restaurant, Boca Dulce. They also offer a variety of signature wellness programs, spiritual retreats and gastronomic innovations, all set against the stunning backdrop of the rainforest valley and the Pacific Ocean.

The wellness packages and retreat experiences are designed for transformational results. Each addresses specific goals related to physical, mental, emotional and spiritual renewal.

The Retreat Costa Rica meditation

For those of you looking for revitalization after a long, stressful period of burnout, the Art of Resting package is your saving grace. This five-night retreat offers ample opportunity for quality rest and relaxation, with plenty of chances for respite and rejuvenation.

During your stay, you can enjoy breath work with an Ayurvedic practitioner, sound healing and aromatherapy treatments. A cranial massage utilizing Marma points can help sustain the flow of energy throughout the body, while the use of an ancient Ayurvedic facial tool—the Kansa wand—can help plump, de-puff, soften fine lines and firm the skin.

3. Bali | Fivelements Retreat

fivelelements bali self-care retreat
Brewing up a flower infusion at Fivelements Puri Ahimsa

Nestled on the banks of the Ayung River, Fivelements is an award-winning eco-conscious wellness retreat deeply rooted in the ancient traditions of Bali. 

Enjoy a morning yoga class followed by a delicious plant-based breakfast in their award-winning dining room. Traditional Balinese healers use ancient wisdoms passed down through generations to offer holistic therapies that will relax and nourish you. If you’re looking to escape the hustle-bustle of everyday life, Fivelements Retreat is the premier place for you.

Their personalized wellness retreats use a holistic approach to tune into your physical, emotional and spiritual levels. Acknowledging and respecting your individuality, you personally work with a Guest Liaison who guides and nurtures a healing path that combines: Balinese healing, balancing & regeneration, plant-based cuisine, sacred arts, and alignment & dedication. Talk about self-care!

4. Thailand | Absolute Sanctuary

Absolute Sanctuary meditation class

Welcome to Koh Samui and Absolute Sanctuary, Asia’s leading wellness resort for fitness, health and lifestyle. Their wellness programs are designed to help you achieve your individual goals, whether you’re looking to detox, pamper yourself, de-stress, manage your weight, change your lifestyle or simply enjoy a meaningful holiday. With 21 different programs across 17 categories, they have something for everyone.

At Absolute Sanctuary they understand how important it is to recharge and rebalance your mind, body and spirit when you’re feeling overworked and fatigued. That’s why they offer a signature program that combines relaxing spa treatments, nourishing foods, and supportive emotional therapies to help you feel refreshed and rejuvenated. If you’re looking for a place to escape the busyness of everyday life, this is the program for you.

Make Self-Care a Priority

Self-care is crucial for our mental and physical well-being. However, many of us forget to schedule it into our busy lives. It doesn’t have to be expensive or lonely. There are plenty of self-care retreats out there that  suit any budget and where you can go as a “soulo” traveler

No more waiting. Now is the time to start investing in self-care.  Book your spot today and start enjoying the benefits of taking time  for yourself (we promise it’s not selfish)!


About Vacayou

At Vacayou [pronounced VACAY – YOU], we believe that travel has the power to change lives. The power to revive, rejuvenate and redirect your inner wellness warrior. And that’s why we’re here. Take an online staycation with us and change how you think about travel. Let us make it easier for you to search, discover, and book wellness and active vacations. But we don’t stop there. We are with you every step of the way—before, during and after your journey—to make sure you enjoy the most meaningful vacation ever. Vacayou is wellness travel that meets you right where you are.

There’s a whole world out there and Vacayou is here to help YOU explore it! No matter how far or how adventurous, our team scours the globe to curate the best in wellness travel. 

To book any of these properties, contact our travel concierge. We are here to help create a healthier global community through wellness and active travel.

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