Taking a break — with sacred intention

spiritualjourneyI’m going on a month-long break, and I’m setting my intentions for the trip

For the second time in my life I’m taking a month off.

Road trip! (Just writing it this way makes me smile. And smiling is good, because I’ve been really nervous about this trip the last few days.)

Taking a month off from my business — taking any time at all besides a few days — has always been very challenging. It’s easier this time than it was in 2010, when I went to Europe for the first time. Easier, by a little bit. My clients have been very encouraging and supportive; when I was doubting that I could let go of projects and of my practice it was my beloved clients who encouraged me to do this! So grateful for each of you!

I’m actually taking a break from writing!

I was worried about stopping my weekly flow of posts, but now I’ve really embraced this opportunity to unplug from routine and recharge — allowing an opening to absorb new experiences, information and images.

I have some guest posts coming for you, from some wonderful writers, which I will get set up and scheduled before I leave. There should be one each week, if all goes as planned. I will schedule a couple of newsletters to go out with links to the guest posts for you.

I will be back to my regular posting schedule by the end of May, writing about the Gemini New Moon.

I will be out exploring.

I am going to visit some of California’s abundant beautiful spots, many of which will be new to me. I’m going to Big Sur, Santa Barbara, Joshua Tree (the desert) — to a women’s Vipassana meditation retreat, Kernville (Sequoia National Park), Mammoth Mountain (Death Valley, lodgepole pines — oldest trees in the world), South Lake Tahoe, and Sonora (Yosemite).

Different wonders. Different climates. Different eco-systems.

Sunlight of the SpiritI will be sharing images instead of words as I go

I will be taking iPhone photos, as I do, and making art as I go. Ephemeral nature mandalas are always on my agenda. Made of bits of twig and rock and feather found where I am, plus some other sacred bits I may be carrying with me, offerings from my heart in gratitude for time spent in Mother Earth’s majesty, under the dome of her tree cathedrals, standing on her shores. Offerings I leave behind me to be reclaimed by the wind and the tides.

I will be posting photos to Facebook on my personal page and to my business page, to my Instagram account, and to Pinterest. Please connect with me on one or more of those, so I can share with you as I go.

I will be traveling as a pilgrim, and walking with sacred intention as much as I can.

Just as when I write, or when I mentor clients, or help a client with her branding and website — intention matters. Every word, every interaction, every single thing has a more positive impact when it comes from sacred intention. 

Taking a holiday? Three tips for bringing the sacred with you as you go

  • Pack a travel altar, and bring your journal. My altar will contain the Mythical Goddess tarot deck, the Goddess oracle deck, some stones from my altar, the Goddess triptych I made for my inspiration altar (Brigid, Lakshmi and Qadesh), and more small sacred bits. Write something each morning that holds your intention for that day. For me, pulling a card from each of my decks and writing about those cards each morning really helps me set sacred intention.
  • Tread lightly. Stay humble. When you travel in humility, instead of entitlement, you will find that you can make amazing connections as you go. Say please and thank you, early and often. Find out where locals eat and hang out and go there. If you’re lucky enough to be in 12-step recovery, go to meetings as you travel. There’s no better way to feel instantly at home, I find.
  • Treat your body as the holy vessel it is even when you’re on vacation. There’s a huge difference in the way you will move through your journey, based on how you choose to roll. Self-care is easy to pack and bring with you, sister. I’ve chosen to stay in places with kitchens I can use. I’ll be bringing some essentials (ghee, coconut oil, good salt, soaked almonds for sure) with me that allow for good-for-my-body eating. Take some time for your spiritual practice. Meditation, t’ai chi, and yoga can be done anywhere. If you can’t bring your mat, or find a bit of floor space for your practice, you can take a meditative walk. 

How do you travel? What do you do to stay connected to the sacred when you’re on the road, and away from routine? How do you recharge when you take a break from your business? I’d love to hear from you; talk to me in the comments!


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I’m a barely tamed hippie, sage, seasoned, sarcastic (not all the time any more, but still). I’m a mom, a daughter, sister, a neighbor, and a friend. I’ve been on this meandering journey — like you, probably — seeking a better connection to and experience of peace, harmony, and fun in every bit of life. I’m single, quite good at it, and mostly love it. I’m here for the conversations I get to have with you, which these days center on exploring the mystery and beauty of life, work, health, aging, and creative expression. Want to know a little more about me and my journey? Explore the site. Read the blog. Connect with me on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

Join the conversation!

  1. Sue–I love to be in the “local energy” whenever I travel.  When abroad, I look for the places where locals gather.  I try and learn a bit of the language, even if it is only the greetings.  As you say, giving thanks, often and regularly, to everyone we meet, deepens the connection of that moment.

    • Laurie, thanks so much. I love how simple it is to make everything meaningful. And it applies at home as well as on a journey, doesn’t it?

      Love and gratitude,

  2. Hi Sue!

    Thanks so much for this great post.  I always have a hard time with self-care when I’m away and you’ve given some really good tips here.  I love that you’re taking a month off–I can only imagine how renewed and refreshed you’ll be when you return.  I look forward to seeing the images of your trip.  I visited Joshua Tree a couple of years ago, it’s amazing.  Have a fabulous time!!!

    • Thanks so much, Cathy!

      You help me see a month away as reasonable instead of too lunatic to even consider!


  3. I love connecting deeply with the earth wherever I travel. “Introducing” myself…getting to know the rhythms and patterns of the ecosystem I’m visiting. This is how I stay grounded and how I learn what/how I can do to support and respect the living system that is supporting me. 

    Have a blessed and luscious trip!

  4. Oh Sue!! Just reading about travel altars, journals, nature mandalas…makes me want to hop in the car and go too!! 🙂  Looking forward to all you’ll be sharing from the road, and the multitude of wonderful stories you’ll have to share when you return. Blessings to you for an amazing trip! xo

    • Cindie, if I could find the way to do this, I know you can too!

      Your path will appear…keep those eyes open.

      Blessed be,

  5. After experiencing a full moon lunar eclipse in the Grand Canyon, the energy vortexes in Sedona and sleeping in a cave with “paranormal activity”, I’d say my vacation last week was a study in the very thing you’re talking about. Releasing my expectations and just being in the moment, where I was, allowed for epic magical experiences. The intention I set before I left was just to enjoy some deeper time with my family and refill my tank. Other than needing a lot of sleep, that’s exactly what happened. Thank you, Universe!

  6. What great advice to bring your spirituality with you … a little altar and cards. I’d never travel without them and of course its essential to live a little like the locals. Thank you is the first word I learn in the language of the country I travel in. that and hello with a big smile so you can connect. I stay connected by going within.. nothing much is needed to connect with our sacred. have a wonderful time. so looking forward to your photos and hearing about it xo

    • Caroline, I love that, learning how to say “thank you” before anything else. Words to live by, yo.

      Blessings to you!

  7. I love how you already know the difference between this trip and your last one. That alone will create the space for magic and miracles to burst forth in every stop and roads in between. A fourth tip for sacred traveling might be to ‘roll with the punches’ and take deviations and inspired detours for what they are – a chance to explore beyond imagination. If there is one person well-equipped in self-awareness to take such a trip, that would be you Sue. Bon Voyage!

    • Thanks, Lorraine, that was so comforting to read. And rolling with the punches… not always my best thing. I’ll try to create intention for that as well!

      Love and gratitude,

  8. Thank you for stopping by my site. 🙂 Have an amazing, rejuvenative trip! When I travel, I bring A LOT of essential oils and make sure I have a plan for my little one if it’s a family trip. I always bring a journal. Everywhere. All the time.

    • Carrie, welcome here! Essential oils, check. Journal, check. Thanks for helping me prepare to bring the sacred everywhere.

      Love and blessings,

  9. love this and such an important reminder, I travel often and it´s easy to pressure myself into thinking I must keep up with it all or just let everything go – balance is so important and self-care something we so easily forget. For me it´s about adjusting my every day to a special holiday everyday 🙂

    • Terena, Thanks! So grateful for the reminder about balance… feeling a little slippery on the teeter-totter myself as I get ready to leave.


  10. Beautiful, Sue! Happy trails to you…

    Hello, please and thank you are the first words I learn in a new language, and I try to use them as much as possible. I also listen with my heart, which knows no language barriers. One thing I’ve noticed is that I let go of ‘looking stupid’ and just allow myself to laugh at my lack of knowledge or language flubs.

    I try to work with people wherever I go – digging in the fields, building walls, whatever they’re doing – because it brings us together in a way that means we’re not ‘trying.’ We’re just being, and doing something that needed to be done. Sometimes the most beautiful things come of those experiences, like the sound of the men singing traditional songs to me in The Philippines as I helped them build a terrace wall. I still get shivers 🙂

    Big Love <3

    • Jenny, thanks for this. Although I’m staying in California, I will be leaving my usual urban setting behind and visiting small towns. Being helpful and coming from a place of humility are the best way to begin. Thanks for your comment.


  11. Sue what a wonderful blessing to travel for a month! I find travel very self-nurturing and love the adventure of visiting new places, meeting new people and appreciating the beauty of the Earth! I love your suggestion to bring a travel alter! Have a wonderful retreat!

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