Cyclical Femininity Women's Yoga retreat with Julie and Stella - Level II
Come experience all that you are, Woman, on the magical and wild South coast of Crete!
Being intimate with your menstrual cycle, you feel the power of each of the inner seasons and you have a longing to embody them even more fully.
In this retreat, you’ll learn to express the whole spectrum of womanhood, beyond the limitations of patriarchy.
You’ll give your Inner Girl of spring full permission to play, discover, and feel vulnerable.
You’ll truly access the Abundant Woman of summer’s self-love and fertile creativity.
You’ll embody the Wild Woman of autumn’s alchemical sexuality and fierceness.
You’ll honour the Wise Woman of winter’s deep liminal knowing.
So you can embody all the diversity of your feminine being. Whole. Empowered. Cycling.
Our sisterhood is waiting for you to arrive on these blessed ancient matrilineal lands!
This powerful retreat will offer you:
* Morning hatha yoga classes, including asana, pranayama and chanting, with Stella who brings her clarity, authenticity and deep devotion to her teachings
* Morning Cyclical Living mini-workshops with Julie to deepen your menstrual cycle awareness
* Afternoon Women’s circles with Julie to experience each of the archetypes through beauty medicine, intuitive movement, singing, drawing, soul sharing, ritual and much more
* Amazing nourishment with all the real goodness of Cretan food - vegan and gluten-free options available
* Time off to explore the wild Sfakian coast, its solitary gorges and beaches on the turquoise Libyan Sea
* Possibility to tailor and deepen your journey further by booking an extra 1:1 Somatic Coaching for Women session with Julie or Yoga session with Stella
"A big fat THANK YOU! This retreat has been so transformative in so many ways, and the best gift I could have given myself. It feels like it marks the end of a rich exploratory chapter and the beginning of a new exciting one, and the knowledge I have of my womanhood, how to love myself and others better, is invaluable for what comes next. Thank you for holding space for the much needed emotional release and the way back to ourselves. I have so much love for all the beautiful and inspiring women who joined me on this journey. Hope to see you again, and efhkaristo, grazie, dankjewel, multumesc! 🙏💓" Iulia, 2021 retreat participant
”A huge thank you for this amazing retreat. I actually struggle to find the right words to express my gratitude and happiness! You created a wonderful space in which so much love, healing, growing and deep connection was able to happen! I had the best time ever, finally reconnected to myself again, and gained new strength, power and hope! And many like-minded women!” Anja, 2021 retreat participant
- Daily morning 1.5-hour hatha yoga class, including asana, pranayama and chanting, with Stella who brings her clarity, authenticity and deep devotion to her teachings
- Morning Cyclical Living mini-workshops with Julie to deepen your menstrual cycle awareness
- Afternoon Women’s circles with Julie to experience each of the archetypes through beauty medicine, intuitive movement, singing, drawing, soul sharing, ritual and much more
- Amazing nourishment with all the real goodness of Cretan food - vegan and gluten-free options available (7 brunches and 5 dinners included)
- Time off to explore the wild Sfakian coast, its solitary gorges and beaches on the turquoise Libyan Sea
- Possibility to tailor and deepen your journey further by booking an extra 1:1 Somatic Coaching for Women session with Julie or yoga session with Stella (not included in course cost)
- A round trip to the beautiful Sweet Water beach
- 7 nights' accommodation in traditional guesthouse located near beach
- Linen and towels provided
The week begins with an opening Women's Circle and introductory, grounding movement session at 6.00 p.m. on the day of arrival, in order to meet and allow women to fully arrive to the retreat, followed by a delicious vegetarian dinner cooked by our wonderful intuitive cook.
All other days will begin with a 1-1.5 hour morning yoga and meditation class with Stella, based on Hatha yoga and Free Flow Vinyasa (usually 8.30-9.30 a.m.), each day focusing on one of the phases of our menstrual and/or moon cycle. This is followed by a Women's Circle led by Julie (9.45-10.45 a.m.), that will introduce the theme of each of the phases. After brunch guests are free to relax and enjoy the beach and sunshine, receive a massage treatment (with a visiting therapist) or somatic coaching for women session (with Julie), or explore the village and region. In the late afternoon, there is the Intuitive Movement Women's Circle (usually 17.00-19.00), which focuses on diving deeper into the exploration of the phase of the day, and the day's programme closes with dinner.
All sessions are held on the yoga deck under the olive trees so you can enjoy your connection with the sea, the trees, and the hills.
The fourth day of the week is a rest day from classes, with no yoga or women's circle; an optional excursion can be arranged, including a guided hike through a gorge of the region (usually the magnificent Aradaina gorge) or other season-appropriate hike, ending at the beach (approx. €25 depending on number of participants going).
All brunches and 5 dinners are offered at the house, while on two of the nights guests are free to dine out in the village restaurants (not included in the course cost; approx. €15 for a full meal including drinks). Individual excursions (e.g., hikes, boat trips) can also be arranged at an extra cost.
On the last day, departure can be arranged after brunch.
The number of women participating is limited to 14, to create a warm and friendly atmosphere, to ascertain that individual attention is given in the sessions and to create a safe and supportive group dynamic.
The morning yoga practice with Stella will start with a short breathing meditation and mantra chanting, and end with deep relaxation and breathing techniques. The practice is based on Hatha Yoga incorporating elements of free flow and vinyasa. We will look at how the body can feel free and open, when allowed to experiment, flow, and be breathed into. Through the practice we create a more bright, centred, spacious awareness of our being so we enter everyday life more confident, true to oneself, and happy. We will uncover the vitality and joy that is present in the body when we slow down, listen to its needs and make space to receive its wisdom, while we will also look at the body's natural potential for physical and emotional healing.
For women in particular leg- and hip-work is important to ground and connect to mother earth, and set the base for a dynamic pelvic floor, which is an essential condition for the spine to unfold, extend and grow, symbolically also creating the ground for this unfolding and growth to happen in less tangible parts of our lives. Another area we will be focusing on is the wonderful potential of an alive belly (the centre of our womb, our life-force and energy), where the forces of earth and sky meet and can be balanced.
A heart-opening session, including chest opening and gentle back-bending, will also be part of the retreat, to help us absorb the knowledge of our feminine bodies more deeply into our hearts.
Lastly, Stella will also offer particular practices for the four phases of the hormonal and/or moon cycle (follicular/waxing moon; ovulation/full moon; luteal/waning moon; menstruation/new moon), for menstruation and menopause to balance and contain hormonal and emotional fluctuations.
Each late morning and then also in the afternoon, we will gather for a women’s circle exploring deep connection to yourself, other women and our cyclical nature.
Julie, life coach, menstrual and creative movement therapist, as well as Awakening Women Circle facilitator, will hold space for us to dive deep into exploring the feminine cycle through movement, art and rituals. The sessions will start with a womb relaxation, then enter into a healing journey and we will complete with more relaxation and sharing.
In each circle, we'll experience initiation into another phase of womanhood, another way of entering pleasure and creating oxytocin (the love hormone!), another phase of our cycle, of the moon, of the sun:
** Inner Girl: Finding Peace and safety for our little girls (follicular phase / spring / waxing moon)**
**Creative Woman: Healing the mother-daughter relationship (ovulation / summer / full moon) **
** Alchemical Woman: Fully embracing our sensuality (luteal phase / autumn / waning moon) **
** Lineage Woman: Taking our place in our ancestral lineage (menstruation / winter / new moon) **
Whether you have a menstrual cycle, are going through or have passed menopause, these phases apply to the subtle energies that affect a woman and her creative potential throughout life. If you're experiencing (pre-)menstrual pain, menopausal, fertility or sexuality issues, you're likely to find release, opening and a way forward.
Women's circles are a beautiful safe and supportive space to share, practice listening with compassion, allow yourself to follow your heart and be held by a group of like-minded women.
In 2012 Julie decided to make a drastic change and re-align her life to her values. She left her strategy consulting career in London to study yoga in India and become a certified co-active life coach. Her life purpose is to be the heart beat that attunes you to your inner frequency. Julie combines her extensive coaching, yoga, dance and business consulting experience to help clients find their calling and unique voice. She specialises in ikigai (life purpose) and feminine empowerment coaching.Having recently settled on Crete, she spent the last six years travelling and giving workshops and sessions across India and Europe, and going deep into spiritual practise in her spiritual home Auroville in South India. She is certified as a Unesco creative movement therapist, an Awakening Women’s Temple leader and is a Madretierra menstrual therapist. Julie coaches a wide variety of clients internationally, online and face to face. In addition to (online and live) 1:1 sessions, she facilitates retreats, workshops and coaching training as well as monthly online gatherings and women’s circles. Her own experience has given her a keen understanding of what it takes to switch careers successfully. Transitioning from academia to corporate life to starting her own coaching and dance therapy practice taught her the importance of loving what you do and being authentic. Julie loves her work which gives her the freedom to combine personal, professional and spiritual growth. A common theme in client feedback is that Julie´s style is natural, warm and impactful. It is a natural extension of what she enjoys doing – creating a safe space, creating clarity and transformation. She loves her dance, yoga, art and meditation practice, and is passionate about conscious femininity and spreading cyclical awareness which she shares about on her Facebook group and Instagram account New Moon Sisters.
Find out more on www.maitreecoaching.com.
“In Julie’s circles, I slip right into my feminine flow and flowering. I have an extra sway in my hips and a sensual playfulness in my body. I really appreciate Julie’s generosity, consistency and commitment to her inner work. It is soothing to be a part of her soft, simple and attuned guidance. I love the womb breathwork and the free expression and I end up bringing to life whatever seeds of intentions I plant in the New Moon circles. I celebrate Julie’s journey and the crossing of our paths, and am grateful for the subtle openings that happened in her presence.”
Pushpanjali, Performing Artist & Embodiment Educator, US & India
“My experience with the Soul Purpose circle has been so enriching and transformative. It’s a space where I explore what I really want, what makes me feel alive and brings me meaning and purpose.
Every circle makes me feel warm inside and gives me a sense of community amongst women interested in exploring what really matters. No matter my state of mind when entering each circle, I come out feeling invigorated and with a full heart. I am very grateful to Julie for offering so many tools and for truly holding space in the service of making our lives more beautiful and gratifying.“
Mouna, Conference Interpreter & Taekwando Enthusiast, US, Tunisia & France
“The YogaOnCrete retreat with Julie is probably one of the best things I have ever done for myself. It was a week of relaxation, introspection and reconnection with my deeper self, set in a beautiful village at the edge of a wonderful island. The food prepared was delicious, the friendships made were special and the memories will be cherished for a long time.
The accommodation was so charming, the retreat house is beautiful and the meals were delicious prepared with fresh local produce. I never thought I would like vegan food so much! I loved the village of Chora Sfakion because it was quiet enough yet had nice restaurants and boat access to wonderful beaches nearby. Perfect for a retreat.
The week turned out to be exactly what I needed. In fact I learned a lot about myself and enjoyed the deep connection with the other women of the group, Julie and frankly with myself. I am a fan and will keep an amazing memory of the whole experience.”
Sabine, Finance Professional, UK & Lebanon
Yoga and meditation are an everyday living entity for Stella's life since she started practising yoga in 2007 at the Yoga Sanctuary in Southampton. Dedication, trust, and love for her teacher's, Steve Harrison's, teaching led her to attend the '200 hrs Yoga Teacher Training Course and Advanced Studies' programme (Independent Yoga Network accredited) (2011-2012). Stella is also a qualified dietitian-nutritionist, with a Ph.D. in nutritional immunology and fetal development (University of Southampton), and a MSc in public health nutrition (University of Glasgow). Inspired by her yoga experience, Stella combined her nutrition skills with yoga and meditation techniques to develop a holistic approach to diet.
After 7 years of living abroad (Glasgow, Southampton and Prague), she decided that it is time to return to her homeland, but instead of Athens where she comes from, she chose Crete. Crete's strong energy and beauty was a calling to share yoga inspired by the 'Living Yoga method' from the Yoga Sanctuary, as well as many elements from other teachers she came across during her travels in India, Nepal and Europe. In 2013 she founded the ZenZem yoga centre in Aptera, Crete, where she teaches yoga all year round for local and visiting students.
Stella is now mother to a 2.5-year-old daughter, with whom she explores new pathways to implement yoga and nutrition for nurturing and growing life. Connecting to nature and wildlife, chanting mantras, singing kirtan and taking part in women's cyclical living practices, are also part of Stella's life. 'Practising and sharing yoga, I continue to grow, learn about myself, and find an inner reference point inside, that helps me strive through the challenges of everyday life. I am delighted to meet and share this energy on Crete with whoever wishes to!'
Stella met Julie in one of the women's circles Julie was offering locally on Crete. Loving the energy and approach of Julie's work, Stella has since then participated in various circles with Julie, and Julie has also joined local yoga classes with Stella. Having the oppotrunity to meet locally, since they live just a couple of villages away on Crete, Julie and Stella were able to find many similarities in movement practices and exchange ideas on methods that help feminine energy flow freely and with abundance, in all phases of a woman's life.
Stella is a fantastic teacher and a lovely person, her lessons are a joy. Whether you are forming Mountain position while facing the White Mountains or lying down for Shavasana looking up at trees against the beautiful blue sky, yoga with Stella gives you a full experience of nature and wellbeing. Her retreats are also great, the lessons designed to nourish not exhaust, and have an intimacy and personalisation which allows everyone to relax and simply be.
Stella is an excellent teacher and encourages enjoyment of the experience and a freer form of yoga that focuses on the breath and freedom of movement, rather than long complex set routines, and she took into account individual needs (i.e., me being pregnant). Thank you Stella and lovely to meet you!
Stella is a wonderful and very sensitive yoga teacher. Your lessons are fun and good for you. I have been coming to retreats again and again for several years and feel completely comfortable. Stella takes all levels of the participants into account and always offers alternatives, which is very helpful for me with my back pain. She provides individual support in a pleasant and ongoing way and keeps an eye on everyone.
- (all inclusive) per person per week
- €670 shared accommodation in twin non-ensuite room (with use of communal bathroom).
- €770 shared en suite accommodation (3 in a room) or single non-ensuite (with use of communal bathroom).
- €820 shared en suite twin or double room.
- €1110 single en suite accommodation (please note that single room availability is limited).
- €520 non-participating partner sharing a room.
- €660 (or €560**) work-exchange option (only one place per week): about 2-3 hours’ help per day with light household tasks (e.g., washing dishes, cleaning yoga studio) that does not interfere with the attendance of all classes. Accommodation in triple room. ** The €560 fee applies only if staying in the small twin non-ensuite room (just for friends sharing)