Frequently Asked Questions

Our program and retreats offer a journey of a lifetime. We want to make sure you have all the information you need. Feel free to reach out to us at inquire@equanimityretreat.com.

WHAT IS EQUANIMITY?

Equanimity is a mental wellness initiative created by a psychiatrist and two clinical psychologists whose vision was to integrate 40 years of combined experience in mental health with best practices in plant medicine-assisted therapy.  Equanimity helps people overcome depression and anxiety, manage stress, resolve inner conflict, overcome fear, find self-forgiveness, cultivate peace of mind and deepen their sense of meaning in life. Equanimity offers bespoke, holistic mental wellness retreats in beautiful natural settings, giving participants the opportunity to undergo deep and lasting personal transformation.

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WHO IS EQUANIMITY FOR?

Equanimity is for mature, thoughtful people over the age of 23 who wish to engage in deep personal growth. Whether you are new to plant medicine or have prior experience, our therapeutic team will design a bespoke healing journey just for you.
 
While we would love to offer everyone a space on our retreats, it's important to note that there are certain people for whom plant medicines are unsafe. This includes participants who present with any of the following:

 

  • Female participants who are pregnant or breast-feeding. 

  • A disabling medical condition including but not limited to cardiovascular disease and hypertension. 

  • Explosive anger

  • Current suicidal or homicidal ideation. 

  • Anyone with a disabling, unstable or acute mental illness or addiction related condition (for example, people in active alcohol withdrawal). 

  • People with a history of serious psychiatric disorders such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia/psychotic disorders, and personality disorders. 

  • Participants whose biological parent/(s) have psychotic or bipolar disorders.

  • Severe, current life instability, including lack of housing and basic resources. 


The only reason our clinical team may decide to exclude someone from a retreat is because we deem it unsafe and not in their best interest. Safety first, always.

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ARE PSYCHEDELICS SAFE?

Notwithstanding the exclusion criteria listed above, an abundance of recent scientific literature suggests that psychedelic plant medicines are safe - far safer than alcohol, nicotine and even cannabis. Plant medicines used by Equanimity are non-addictive, non-toxic, and when taken under the guidance of a trained professional within the correct set and setting, pose virtually no risks.

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CAN I USE PSYCHEDELIC 
MEDICINES IF I'M CURRENTLY ON ANTI-DEPRESSANTS?

Our clinical team reviews individuals' suitability for participation on a case by case basis. As a general rule, people currently taking ant-depressants, including tricyclic antidepressants, serotonin-reuptake inhibitors, MAOIs, and St. John’s Wort should wean off their medication under the guidance of a professional before embarking on a psychedelic-assisted therapy journey.

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IF I DON'T MEET THE SCREENING CRITERIA, CAN I POTENTIALLY JOIN A FUTURE RETREAT?

Yes. Where appropriate, prospective participants who aren't able to join us for failing to meet our inclusion criteria will be added to a wait list and advised by our team as to what they can do to prepare for a future retreat.

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HOW DO I BOOK A RETREAT?

Click on any of the "Book Now" buttons on our site and follow the prompts. Alternatively, please feel free to reach out to us at inquire@equanimityretreat.com.

 

Once you have completed a pre-screening questionnaire, your application will be reviewed. Upon successful pre-screening, you will receive a link to book a no-obligation introductory call with a member of our team to: explore your intentions for wanting to embark on this healing journey with us; answer any questions and concerns you may have; and assess whether Equanimity is a good fit for you. Thereafter, a 50% deposit will secure your spot at your selected retreat venue on your selected dates. A full refund is possible up to 95 days before the start date of your selected retreat.

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HOW DOES THE GUIDED PSYCHEDELIC-ASSISTED THERAPY SESSION WORK?

The guided session is conducted in a comfortable, private space in a beautiful natural setting, while lying down, wearing eyeshades, and listening to carefully curated emotive music to facilitate a profound and transformative internal journey. Your personal guide, with whom you would have cultivated a safe and trusting relationship, stays close by and offers a supportive presence.

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WHAT IS THE TYPICAL AGE OF YOUR PARTICIPANTS?

We only include participants over the age of 23. Our participants' ages have ranged from 25-60.

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WILL MY PERSONAL INFORMATION BE KEPT CONFIDENTIAL?

Yes. Your personal information is kept strictly confidential and is never shared with 3rd parties.

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DO YOU OFFER 1-ON-1 PSYCHEDELIC-ASSISTED THERAPY SESSIONS IF I PREFER TO DO THIS IN PRIVATE?

Yes. 1 on 1 sessions can be arranged with our clinical team if you meet our safety criteria. However, we strongly recommend experiencing a retreat. The retreat model offers a unique natural setting and context, removed from your everyday environment, ideally suited to deep inner work. The retreat also offers a holistic mental wellness program including yoga, meditation, breathwork and 1 on 1 sessions with your therapist. It is the experience of a lifetime.

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WHERE IS THE RETREAT?

Currently, our Flagship 5-day retreat takes place in Ocho Rios, Jamaica in a luxurious ocean-front villa, while our 5-day Grassroots retreat takes place on a private game farm nestled within the exquisite mountains of Mpumalanga, South Africa.

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CAN I COME WITH MY PARTNER?

Yes. Couples have joined us on retreat and had a wonderful time. Experiencing a retreat with your partner can be a deeply bonding and memorable experience. In some instances, though, it may make sense to come alone. This is especially the case if you are working through a personal issue, and their presence may be distracting for you. Also note that the guided psychedelic-assisted therapy journey can be done within the same proximal space as your partner, but separately nonetheless. In other words, we don't currently offer 'couples therapy journeys.' If you have decided you would like to come with your partner, you'll both need to set up an introductory call with us. You may attend the call together or separately.

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WHAT IF I HAVE TO CANCEL MY RETREAT?

If you can no longer attend the retreat you’ve booked, we offer the following options:

Up until 30 days prior to your retreat:

 

  • We will gladly help you get booked onto a new retreat date (at no extra cost).

  • If you don’t know when you’ll be able to attend, we will store your paid amount as credit to be applied to a future retreat (at no extra cost). This credit will not expire.

  • If you no longer want to attend a retreat, Equanimity will keep the non-refundable deposit (50% of the retreat fee) and refund any remaining paid amount.

If you notify us less than 30 days in advance:

 

  • Equanimity will keep the non-refundable deposit (50% of the retreat fee) and help you get booked onto a new retreat date.

  • If you no longer want to attend a retreat, Equanimity will keep the deposit (50% of the retreat fee) and refund any remaining paid amount.

 

COVID-19 related cancellations

  • If Equanimity has to cancel your retreat due to COVID-19 health and safety or travel restrictions, we will gladly help you get booked onto a new retreat date or store your full paid amount as credit towards a future retreat (at no extra cost). This credit will not expire.

  • If you are no longer able to attend due to COVID-19 health, safety or travel restrictions, and notify us 14 days in advance, we will gladly help you get booked onto a new retreat date (at no extra cost). This credit will not expire.



If you need to cancel your place on a retreat, please notify us as early as possible at inquire@equanimityretreat.com.

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IS THERE ANY PREPARATION I CAN DO BEFORE A RETREAT?

Our clinical team will assist you with all preparation work, however, in the 2 weeks prior to a retreat, we recommend the following to prepare your body and mind to gain the most from the experience:

  • Limit social media & news as much as possible

  • Limit phone & screen time where possible

  • Gratitude journaling

  • Move as close to a balanced diet as possible

  • Move towards a vegan diet (limit dairy and meat)

  • Reduce consumption of caffeine, sugar and energy drinks

  • Abstain from illicit drugs

  • Implement a Mindfulness Meditation routine: we recommend 15 - 20 minutes at the start and end of the day. The Waking Up or Headspace apps are excellent resources to get you started.

  • Follow a yoga and exercise routine. Use the Down Dog Yoga app to help you begin, or access any other credible resources online.

  • Prioritize quality sleep and rest. See Matthew Walker's Principles for Healthy Sleep.