“On an olive farm nestled between two hills, a stone’s throw from Cape Town, you’ll find the beautiful Porcupine Hills Guest House. With a series of rustic and thoughtfully designed self catering options and a wild setting that is second to none, the space lends itself to a luxury retreat. At the end of June that’s exactly what Porcupine Hills turned itself into and you would have found a small group of wonderful women gathering in this corner of the Western Cape for 3 days of yoga and women’s empowerment.
The women who signed themselves up for the retreat – me included – did so in the hope of 3 days of excellently led yoga classes, discussion circles and beautiful food. This is certainly what we got, as the leaders of the retreat, Eleftheria and Brigitta of Yoga Motive, are experts in their respective fields. Eleftheria, with a background in psychology, is a Feminine Wisdom counsellor, founder of Catalyst Facilitator training and runs numerous retreats, 1:1 sessions and circles for women to enable connection to their deeper self and practical spirituality. Brigitta runs a successful yoga studio in Cape Town’s city centre and has been described by numerous people as ‘the best teacher they have ever had’ (not less by myself and the other women who encountered her teaching across the retreat weekend!). These expertise were met in the kitchen too with beautiful vegetarian food cooked by Marissa from Life-minded Food, perfectly nourishing our bodies across the weekend.
So yes, myself and the group that gathered certainly got what we ‘signed up for’ but boy oh boy did we encounter more than that too…
Through the intentionally designed yoga classes led by Brigitta which gently took us through opening up parts of our body and their aligning chakras across the weekend, we blessed our bodies. We took time to be conscious of our breath, of how our bodies ached or felt good. Of how these connected to how we felt on an emotional level.
Through guided meditations and circles led by Eleftheria, the use of singing bowls and calming scents, we blessed our souls. We utilised Eleftheria’s own Feminine Wisdom Oracle cards and, alongside myth storytelling, we gleaned an insight into balancing the feminine and masculine aspects within each of us. We took the time to turn inwards, to listen to that inner voice we so often silence and to share these thoughts and feelings in a safe and sacred space.
Even more profound however was what happened beneath the surface of these beautifully led sessions… I think it is fair to say that someone who chooses to come on a retreat like this is usually coming to do some self work. Whether that ‘work’ is simply to relax and take oneself out of the daily chaos, to have the space to make an important decision or to realign yourself with who you are and your priorities. What happens when you gift yourself a retreat like this one, and the space to do whatever ‘work’ it is you desire, is incredible and I’m coming to the conclusion that the universe honours it, returning your intention tenfold. If you are so inclined you might even believe that that group of women, at that time in that space was divinely orchestrated for your best.
We all know that there is a magic that happens when a group of women come together too.That is a great part of what makes this retreat so special. You know that feeling when you are with your sisters- be they your greatest girlfriends or other inspirational women in your life? It’s a tangible magic and a magic that was palpable across that weekend in Porcupine Hills. It’s one that says we are all connected and standing alongside one another, beyond just that weekend, and it is deeply affirming.
So friends, I can wholeheartedly recommend a retreat by this dynamic duo. Whatever your intention, to gift yourself a space to retreat under the guidance of Brigitta and Eleftheria, alongside incredible food and a group of women who I can guarantee will become friends, is the best way you can be kind to yourself. Maybe I’ll see you at the next one? I’m certainly sold!”
Blog post by guest blogger Rachel Lees from The Foraged Life