Emotional well-being through writing – Online / in the Himalayas

Self-growth through writing, October 2019

Writing-for-self workshop,  Christmas 2018.

Our much loved "Writing for Self Growth" Workshop is now available both, on-location at the Himalayan Writing Retreat and online. You can choose your preferred modality. The small group experience stays the same. The same learnings, the same writing exercises and workload. Those who wish to experience the physical inspiration of the Himalayas can travel, while ones who want to attend it from their homes can opt for the online version. The total participants will still be capped at ten.

This emotional well-being workshop is open to non-writers and writers. It has been put together using scientifically validated practices and theories from the field of psychology. The program is led by Dr. Vandita Dubey, a clinical psychologist trained in the US. 

Through a host of different writing exercises you reflect on your life and process difficult emotions. You gain insights into your thoughts and feelings and find a new perspective - a better way to deal with life’s challenges. While various exercises are done as a group, each participant's personal journey is private. Sharing is optional.

Day 1:  Look back at the the past - the rearview. But through a new lens - a new perspective.  

Day 2:  Explore the present. Identify issues that bother you. Discover strengths.

 Day 3: Look to the future. Tackle the inner critic. Let go of unhelpful emotions.

Self-growth through writing workshop, April 2019

Self-growth participants inspired by Mrs. Lakshmi Lal, Dec 2019

In addition, meditation sessions, mindfulness and visualization exercises all help calm the mind. Anyone with a good internet connection can participate. Writing experience or expertise is not required. A public sharing or publishing goal is also not required.

The online course is not a bunch of recorded videos. It is a very intense, live, small group experience led by an expert.

To keep the experience personal, we accept only the first 10 applicants in one batch.

Malick Khan

HR Professional, Hyderabad

If you are willing to take the risk to open yourself to the unknown, to pierce through your soul and find who you really were, really are, or really could be; then no better place than the 'Himalayan Writing Retreat".
Vandita and Chetan's passion oozes from every microscopic detail of the carefully and lovingly crafted place.....


Government service, Dehradun

I find no word apt and no phrase complete, that would do justice to the experience and take home from this retreat. They helped me to navigate through my turbulent emotions and calm them. I am a much sorted and calmer person after returning, full of gratitude for Chetan Sir & Vandita mam. This has been the best investment I have ever done on myself.

Abhikaran Deo

Law student, Sonepat

Amazing place, superb food, lovely company and soothing breeze. If you’re looking for anything remotely close to this, Himalayan Writing Retreat is the place. Pack your bags, don’t think much and thank them later.
It helped me to find my calm amongst the chaos, I hope it helps everyone too.

The workshop has been carefully put together by Dr. Dubey based on her years of training and practice in the field of Clinical Psychology as well as her original research in the area of trauma and resilience. It integrates exercises and concepts from the fields of Mindfulness, Writing for Personal Development, Cognitive Behavior Therapy and Positive Psychology & Resilience.

Participants love this workshop. They say nice things. To watch videos of participants, click here or scroll down. To read participant reviews of the Himalayan Writing Retreat, click here.   

Facilitator : Dr. Vandita Dubey is a US licensed Psychologist and a published author. She holds a Doctoral Degree in Clinical Psychology from the Illinois School of Professional  Psychology. Her book "Parenting in the age of Sexposure" was published by Rupa in 2016. She provides individual and group therapy online.  She is the expert psychologist featured on the popular you-tube channel Zen-brain.

You can learn more about her and read her blog at http://vanditadubey.com/ .

For a detailed, day-wise program, scroll down or click here.

Are you looking for a writing skills workshop, and not one on emotional well-being? Check out out our Online Writing skills workshop, click here

For Himalayan Participants

When: Feb 24-28, 2021

Arrive on Feb 24. Attend the workshop on 25-27 with other participants from 9 am to  1 PM and from 3 - 6 pm (IST).  Leave on Feb 28.

While you're here, walk in the wilderness,  sit (and sing) around the fire, gaze at the stars. Your eyes feast on the magnificent Himalayan dusks and dawns, your ears on the live birdsong concert, your lungs on clean crisp mountain air, and your taste buds on the delectable, homely fare we're rated 5/5 for.

Where: The Himalayan Writing Retreat, Satkhol Village. Uttarakhand - 263138 (India). Details here.

How much : INR 30,000 (3 days, 4 nights of learning, twin-sharing stay, food and taxes). Click here for our Cancellation Policy.

Note: An RTPCR Covid test is required of all people choosing to travel for the workshop.  Single occupancy is subject to availability at an additional cost of 8k. If single occupancy is a prerequisite (e.g. if you snore loudly, have sleep apnea or talk gibberish in your sleep) then please mention it clearly in the application.)

For Online Participants

When:  Feb 25-27, 2021.

Where: Your home. (or wherever you have a PC and good connectivity).

How much : INR 14,000 (USD 250 for international participants). For our cancellation policy, click here. 

How to attend : Click on the "Sign up" link below. You can pay the workshop fee there. Email us your questions at namrata@himalayanwritingretreat.com, or call +91 -73035-16665

Only first ten registrations are accepted. Click this button to sign up.

Detailed Program

This workshop is an opportunity to self reflect and express one’s inner most thoughts and feelings. Sometimes we will do this directly, sometimes indirectly through the process of creative writing. Writing is a safe process of self exploration and expression. The exercises have been carefully chosen to provide participants an opportunity to explore different kinds of issues. As the objective of this workshop is self growth, we will not be focusing on editing, reviewing or publishing.

The past and its influence

Forming connections as a group. Forming connections with the self. Working with the past.

We begin with a relaxation exercise. Learning to relax our mind by relaxing our body.

We will then do an interactive writing exercise that helps us come together as a group. We will also do some exercises to help us focus on why we are here, what we want to achieve. 

Through different exercises we will explore different aspects of our past. Trace where who we are today came from. What shaped us?

In the second half of the day we will do two exercises where we will work with some memories/experiences related to our childhood.

Working with the present

Meditation. Exploring our present: Uncovering issues. Finding their sources. Increasing acceptance. Discovering strengths.

We begin the day with a guided meditation session. Calming the mind has many benefits - psychological and physical.

With a calm mind we begin to address what troubles us the most in the present. We will complete an exercise designed to deepen one’s understanding of the issue we pick. Most often our awareness of what upsets us is at a superficial level. Therefore, we address things only at a superficial level. This does not help as the underlying issues are not addressed and various incidents keep upsetting us.

We will then do some exercises that help us explore the different facets of our personality. Accept them as part of us. And, most importantly, uncover our strengths. We need to be aware of our strengths as we need to rely on them, especially during difficult times.

Preparing for the future

Working with the internal critic. Letting go of unhelpful emotions.

The internal critic often gets in our way. This is not only applicable to creative artistes but people involved in different kinds of activities. It sometimes prevents us from ever starting activities that we may find fulfilling. We will be brave and use all our 5 senses to uncover our internal critic. We will then do an exercise aimed at uncovering it’s origins. Through another exercise we learn to moderate its negative impact on us.

We do an exercise aimed at helping us cross the bridges that we need to cross. We do another exercise aimed at putting words to unexpressed emotions. The unexpressed emotions often affect us in negative ways and it is important to express them so that we can let them go.

We will end the day with working on our personal mission statement. We will plan for our journey towards continued emotional wellbeing and growth.

The Himalaya participants stargaze / sing songs by the fire / share their talents with the group. 

We close with all participants sharing feedback.

© himalayanwritingretreat 2016