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Unplug From Your Life

Nov 10 2022
6 min read
Man laying in a park looking up at the sky.

Seeking a holistic way to listen within? Try a spiritual retreat at Canyon Ranch Woodside to reset your mind, body, and soul.

We turn to our phones, tablets, computers, and other gadgets throughout the day, whether it’s for work, to connect with friends and family, help us answer questions, manage our schedules, or provide entertainment or distraction. It’s easy to get dependent on them, making it difficult to fully disconnect. They make us feel like we’re in control of all the things we’re responsible for. But if you don’t take the time to connect within, away from the technology that constantly keeps you plugged in, you’ll start to become estranged from yourself. You may forget what it feels like to truly relax, or what real silence is and why it’s a vital element in a thriving, spiritually connected life. It helps us hear the “still, small voice” inside.

How to Disconnect?

While it may seem hard to unplug completely, it is possible—even for just a little while. Taking time to get away from it all is one solution. "A Spiritual retreat replenishes the well of our life energy. It is soul food," says Jeanne-Marie Mudd, Spiritual Wellness Provider at Canyon Ranch Woodside. "Through silence, solitary practice, shared explorations into our ways of being in the world, tasting and savoring the food that nourishes us, we help guests take the time to explore new rhythms of life."

Located in Northern California (but worlds away from the rush of Silicon Valley), our weekend retreat offers activities that range from Japanese forest bathing to QiGong, to relaxing spa treatments and inspiring TED-like speaker events that center on personal and spiritual development—helping you to understand and identify what you need to find a balance between your external and internal worlds.

Here are a few ways Canyon Ranch Woodside helps you to unplug with our Find Inner Calm Pathway.

Set Your Intention

Before you arrive, you'll meet with a Wellness Guide who will help clarify the purpose of choosing our weekend retreat in the Redwoods. Upon arrival, one of our Spiritual Wellness Providers will guide you to even more clarity. “We spend the beginning of our time together to understand who you are, where you're coming from, and uncover the ways that you connect to source, or something greater than themselves,” explains Jeanne-Marie Mudd, Spiritual Wellness Provider for Canyon Ranch Woodside. “And then, of course, what's their intention for their Canyon Ranch visit and the spiritual wellness visit.”

Focus More on You

Because we’re always tuned in to emails, text messages, calendars, and more, most of us don’t take the time to turn our attention inward and think about what we really need. Your time spent inside the majesty of the Redwood Forest brings you an immediate sense of peace that allows you to easily free yourself from distractions. This gives room to check in with yourself and observe how you’re feeling physically and emotionally.

Our Spiritual Wellness Providers at Woodside serve as guides, sharing ancient and evidence-based insights that deepen your understanding to see your whole, full self. “We help you to cultivate practices that lift the veils, dissolve the masks, and create space within for the feelings of forgiveness, compassion, and loving-kindness that are so often blocked,” says Jeanne-Marie.

Slow Down Time

Taking some time for yourself doesn’t mean altering your whole schedule. At Canyon Ranch, we encourage you to unplug by putting your devices away as often as possible. Start small and see where it goes. You may find you need a half hour or even an hour. If you feel anxious after just a half hour of turning your device off, you may be addicted to it. So give yourself permission to slow down and tune out. “Here, we rest, take time to ponder and pause,” shares Jeanne-Marie. “With time, we draw into the center of being present and open to the still, small voice that nudges us towards our purpose, joy, and the source of our resilience.”

Breathe and Bathe in the Forest

Take a guided hike in the Redwoods to visit our 2000-year-old tree, aptly called Methuselah, and embrace the Japanese healing practice of Shinrin Yoku, a term coined in 1982 by Tomohide Akiyama, Director of the Japanese Forestry Agency, which means forest bathing. Research shows that bathing in the forest is a form of preventative care endorsed all over the world, including by the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy in the U.S., considered a balm for the mind, forest bathing has been shown to help lower anxiety and reduce stress.

However, bathing in the forest doesn't require walking around sans clothing. It only requires you to be still. Once inside the Redwoods, stand, or sit still for four to 10 minutes. Listen to the sounds you hear—the wind, the rustle of the trees, and bathe in what you feel. Practice breathwork. Mindful breathing can help you stay in the present moment and release any thoughts that distract you. This is a great practice that engenders the calm, balanced feeling we’re aiming for when we unplug. Do this each day of your weekend getaway and notice how you shift.

Making time for a Spiritual retreat is not an end in itself, reminds Jeanne-Marie. At Canyon Ranch Woodside, it's one step in your journey to living a well way of life.

Learn more about our Find Inner Calm Pathway.

Headshot of Jeanne-Marie Mudd

About the Expert

Headshot of Jeanne-Marie Mudd

Jeanne-Marie Mudd

DDiv, MC, PCC, Spiritual Wellness Provider

Jeanne-Marie is committed to creating a safe space for resort guests to explore their inner lives. She offers spiritual care, presentations and teaching, as well individual, couple, family, and group sessions on practices that sustain a generative life.

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