What #retreatlife looks like

Imagine waking up to this...

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Sipping your morning coffee, matcha or tea here...

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And practicing yoga with this view...

Guess what? You can have all these things when you join me for my Maine Retreat in September!

The house we'll be staying at is right on the beach - you can catch the sunrise from the deck or walk 2 minutes to get the full sunrise-over-the-ocean experience (highly recommended - it truly is epic!).

After sunrise (and if you don't want to wake up that early, that's totally okay too! You do you!) we'll enjoy a light breakfast before our morning yoga practice. We'll either practice on said deck with the ocean in the background, or in our private woods studio.

Morning yoga will be followed by a break and then we'll gather back together for a delicious vegetarian brunch. Yes, there will be my infamous paleo pancakes and matcha lattes.

After brunch you'll have free time - you can take a walk or nap on the beach (there are giant rocks at the end which is my favorite place for a relaxing afternoon of sun bathing and reading), explore the local area (so many fun shops and sights) or stay cozy in the cottage where there a plenty of nooks for reading, writing or reflecting.

Later in the afternoon there will be an optional workshop designed to inform and inspire you - we'll talk about Human Design, Astrology, Katonah Yoga and more!

Before dinner we'll do a short meditation so that we can all be more full present with our delicious, mostly organic and totally delicious meal.

After dinner there will be tea, tarot and good conversation, or quiet time and bed if you're feeling like that would be more supportive. One evening we'll have a new moon ceremony and one evening we'll go out on the town, but like everything, it's totally optional!

Does this sound like a dreamy schedule? Come with us!

Spots are filling fast (I intentionally wanted this to be a small, intimate group) so even if you're a little bit interested, check out the retreat details here today: http://www.emilynachazel.com/maine-retreat-2019

The website has all the must know info: dates, pricing, what's included, how to get there and FAQs (yes, all humans are welcome, sorry no pets or babies for this one). There's also the option to extend your retreat beyond the weekend and stay for some extra time in nature and, if you'd like, some extra 1:1 time with me!

Early bird pricing ends on 7/15 but I have a feeling many of the rooms will be fully booked by then so don't wait. YOU DESERVE THIS GETAWAY!!

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If you want to be there, I want you to be there! Please feel free to reach out to me with any additional questions, concerns, or anything that is holding you back from putting down your deposit today.


For details + to register, head here:

2019 Maine Retreat with Emily

You're invited to my happy place (RETREAT!)

My biggest challenge (in being a coach, an entrepreneur and a human in this modern world) has been learning to manage my energy. I’m a naturally energetic person (especially when perusing my passions like healthy food, yoga and self development), but even I have found myself burnt out, feeling stuck and unable to create or move forward with the projects I’m working on, both professionally and personally.

The modern world is fuller than it’s ever been with our always available information, endless work and infinite possibilities for growth and learning. This can be incredible – now more than ever we are empowered to pursue our passions and live our #bestlives. There’s so much energy and so much support around manifesting the life of your dreams.

However, it can be challenging to tune in and listen for what you really want amidst the noise of the day-to-day, and it can be challenging to find the energy to dream if you’re feeling drained from your very full life.

One thing I’ve learned is the importance of taking time off. Not signing out of email for the weekend (although that’s important too!), but creating space to physically remove myself from my work environment, to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and to immerse myself in nature, self care and meaningful connection with myself and with others.

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My family’s house in Kittery Point, Maine has been one place I’m fortunate to retreat to several times a year, and now you too can join me for a relaxing + restorative weekend in my “happy place.”

I’ve participated, co-hosted, supported and collaborated on over a dozen retreats throughout the last 5 years. This retreat is everything I would want in a weekend and I’m thrilled to invite you to join me for it.

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This all-inclusive long weekend is for creatives, entrepreneurs and caregivers (if you’re a teacher, boss, parent, or simply someone who cares for others as part of your job or life, you’re a caregiver!) looking to recharge physically, mentally and emotionally. We’ll enjoy delicious healthy food, daily yoga, and the peacefulness of nature. There will be optional afternoon workshops designed to inspire and restore you, and give you the boost you need to move forward with whatever professional or personal projects you’re working on.

There's also an option to stay past the weekend and either have more time to relax, or dive deeper into your goals and challenges through a special coaching add on. Think of it like a mix between vacation, summer camp and a mastermind. It’s going to be incredible and I’m almost looking forward to this time more than the retreat itself. Almost ;)

There are very limited spaces - 9 total, 3 of which have already been taken. If anything here sparks your curiosity, I encourage you to check out the retreat page for more details and register.

I can’t wait to welcome you to this special place, for such a special weekend in September!


For details + to register, head here:

2019 Maine Retreat with Emily

Never underestimate the power of this

Truth: I had a ton of resistance leading up to this past weekend's retreat in the Catskills. Even though I was cooking for the retreat, my mind made up all these reasons why I didn't need to go and why I shouldn't go.

Over the last 5 years, I've co-hosted, supported, helped organize and participated in over a dozen retreats. Each time some sort of resistance comes up. I somehow make it through and each time I'm blown away by the transformative power of a weekend (or week) away.

This weekend was no different.

Yogis do sunset in the Catskills - stunning!

Yogis do sunset in the Catskills - stunning!

The focus of the weekend was around self care: we meditated on what in our lives needs to go, we journaled on the practices or habits we felt needed to come in and we had real, honest conversations about our challenges taking care of ourselves as adults in the modern world.

Our three days in the mountains felt like WAY longer - there was time for all the things (yoga, healthy food, hiking, down time, sleep!). I felt myself shed an energetic layer of "stuff" I wasn't even fully aware I was carrying around.

The space and time for reflection also allowed me to get even clearer on my next steps: what's important to me right now, where I want to focus my energy and what I need to let go of in order for my goals to come to fruition.

Our weekend escape house - look at that blue sky!

Our weekend escape house - look at that blue sky!

As I've shared before, sometimes I feel like I'm just learning how to be a grown up now. Sure my parents, family and school taught me a lot of the practical steps, but as I walk through this 3rd decade of my life, I'm surprised at the emotional, mental and spiritual lessons I'm learning.

And while many of those lessons are learned in the day to day, the actual acknowledgment, processing and integration of those lessons usually occurs when I'm able to remove myself from my regular routine, like when I'm on a retreat or vacation.

I've said this after other retreats, and I'll likely say it again: never underestimate the power of a weekend away.

Whether it's a week in Sedona with your parents (major lessons there my friends - read this post if you haven't already), escaping the city for a quiet weekend in the country or renting an AirBnB for a night away from your regular routine, removing yourself from the distractions of your every day life has tremendous transformative and restorative power.

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On the bus ride back from the Catskills I was inspired to flush out all the details for an early fall retreat at my family's house in Maine. This is something I've been dreaming about for a long time (ever since we renovated the house 3 years ago). Even though I had other work to do, even though I was a little car sick from the ride, my gut said to DO IT and so I did.

This retreat is coming together (I promise I will be sharing details soon - it will be Sept 26-30 if you want to mark the date on your calendar!!) and I know none of this would have happened if I hadn't had the time away to recharge my body and my spirit.

Wildflowers EVERYWHERE! So beautiful.

Wildflowers EVERYWHERE! So beautiful.

One of my coaching clients joined us on this retreat. Earlier this week we had a call to recap what came up and how she wants to take what she learned in the weekend and bring it into her life.

My coaching for her (and what I do myself) was this:

  1. Create a small amount of space in your everyday life to retreat - Create some space in your daily routine where you disconnect from all the things (work, computer, TV, cell phone, friends and family) and reconnect to YOU. This can look like a yoga or meditation practice, nightly journaling routine or other ritual. Ideally this happens every day.

  2. Plan for regular, bigger retreat times. Aim to have a longer "retreat" on your calendar each week or month. Sure this can be a long weekend in Maine with a teacher who inspires you (!!), or a staycation where you leave the kids with your SO or parents and check into a fancy hotel, or a spa day with your best friend. But it can also be as simple as an afternoon where you turn off your phone and shut down your computer and are present with what's going on around you.

The important thing with both of these "retreats" is that you're able to tune out some of the noise of life (a lot of which comes from our technology!) and tune into YOU. Bonus if you can be alone and/or be in nature, but that doesn't have to happen every time.

So today I encourage you to look at your calendar. Do you have a true getaway planned? And if not, can you make the time and space for one, even if it is local, or more of a digital detox than a true vacation?

My next retreat will be in Maine - will you join me?

My next retreat will be in Maine - will you join me?

There may be resistance that comes up (I don't have time! It's too expensive! My family needs me!). This is NORMAL and likely means you're on the right path to something that your soul needs for change and growth.

And then I want to hear from you - what's your retreat plan? Are you going to join me in Maine in September? Is there another trip or vacation in the books? How are you going to bring this idea of "retreating" into your every day life? Leave a comment below and let me know!

For this past weekend's retreat I had the pleasure of fueling the group with delicious, healthy food. I put together a recipe book with all the yummy things we made including Paleo Banana Pancakes, Lemon Dill Salmon, Tahini Fudge and MORE!

Click here to download the Self Care Retreat Recipe Book.

Space to reflect

I had another blog post planned for today but when I sat down to finish it, it didn't feel right. 

I was planning to write to you about sugar cravings and some tips I've been sharing with my 1:1 coaching clients the past week (which I'll likely send next week because it is really, really good info!).

But something stopped me when I went to hit publish. I make most of my business decisions from my gut and so I knew I had to heed that hesitation and listen more closely for what wanted to be shared today.

So I took a minute and tuned in. I stopped what I was doing, took a few deep breaths and I asked myself "What would feel more in alignment here?" and the answer became clear.

Nothing new.

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With everything going on this week - the Jewish New Year, remembering 9/11, the hurricane (which hits particularly close for me as my grandparents live most of the year in Duck, North Carolina and I am actually supposed to be going down there next weekend) and the back-to-school/life/work really setting in, it didn't feel like this was a week to share or start something new.

It felt like this should be a week for reflection. For honoring where we're at right in this moment, for feeling gratitude for all the good in our lives (especially the things we take for granted on a daily basis) and for acknowledging our intentions for the year to come.

Holding space for reflection is so important, yet something that we often skip over in our fast paced lives.

We jump from one thing to the next and don't always allow ourselves to "digest" our life experiences (yes, experiences and emotions need to be digested too!).

Personally, I think a lot of the gut issues I've been experiencing lately are a result of this go-go-go mentality. Even if you love your job and fill your life with all things you enjoy, you still need space to just breathe and be.

Photo by Seana Pasic

So today (or this weekend) I encourage you to give yourself just that. Take a break and go for a walk without your phone. Sit on a park bench or your sofa without a book, cell phone or TV for distraction. Leave an hour of your day unscheduled (or if you tend to schedule EVERYTHING, block off an hour in your calendar to do nothing).

The most important part? Let go of your expectations of this time. Literally, expect nothing of yourself. Don't expect to feel amazing or rested or restored afterwards. Don't plan for revelations, insights or big emotional ahas (although those may naturally happen).

In that time, first just breathe. Let your thoughts wander. Allow your gaze to linger. Just be.

And then if there is something that you know you need to reflect on or simply be with, allow yourself to go there. Have your thoughts, feel through your feelings and let your body and your mind digest it all.

This is not a "to do" but if you do try this out or if something I shared above resonated with you, I'd love to hear from you :) Leave a comment below and let me know.

The best advice I received recently

Recently my gut has not been happy.

By recent I mean things haven't been quite right the past year, but the last few months I've been in a LOT more pain and discomfort. I tried to "fix" things myself - eliminating different foods, taking supplements, trying this and that healing diet, meditating more, doing more yoga - but nothing seemed to help. At all.

Which left me feeling frustrated, annoyed that I couldn't figure this out myself and honestly pretty angry at my body. Here I was eating so much healthier and being so much more careful with what I consumed than so many people, yet I was still in so much pain.

So I finally asked for help.

I went to see a GI and he's been sorta helpful. He ran some tests and suggested I give the low FODMAP diet a serious try, which I've been doing with some success.

But the best (and most surprising) advice I received around my current gut stuff came from Robyn.

We work together closely so she's seen me going through all of this.

 

 

After a particularly bad week I lamented TO HER:
"I'm tired of having to care about every little thing I eat. I'm tired of being more sensitive than everyone else. I just want to be normal."
Robyn's response?

"You ARE normal Emily.

There's just this one piece of you that needs a little extra care and attention right now."

 

She went on to suggest that I think of this piece of me (my gut!) like a baby and that I (the rest of me) needed to care for, protect and love this piece of me like a mother fiercely cares for, protects and loves her child.

This simple advice totally shifted my perspective.

First, I realized I was blowing things out of proportion.

Yes, my gut has been unhappy but my energy, my sleep, my skin, my mood and so much more have been good (for the most part). I'm not totally broken, there's just one piece of me that needs some extra support right now.

Second, it gave me a new way to look at my gut and how I needed to take care of it.

How does a mother treat a crying newborn baby? Well most often she tries to soothe the baby and would do anything in her power to find out what her baby needs to stop crying - out of fierce love, not just to quiet the cries (although I haven't been a parent and can guess that sometimes you do just want to quiet the cries...but that's not the point here).

 

 

Instead of being angry at my digestive system and avoiding certain foods as punishment, I'm looking at my gut like a little baby that I need to care for, love and protect like a mother would CARE FOR A SICK OR HURT child.

 

This shift has been profound for me.

Part of being an adult is learning to "grow up" - most of us are taught that we should get a job, pay our bills and be a law-abiding citizen, but there's more. Emotionally we must learn to take care of ourselves from a deep sense of self love. How (I assume) a mother or father feels for a new born baby. Unwavering, unapologetic, protective.

No matter how many loving parents, grandparents, siblings, partners, friends you have in your life, YOU must be your own best caretaker.

You must learn how to nurture, soothe and protect yourself, both physically and emotionally.

At 30 years old, even after a wonderful childhood and years of personal development, this is something I'm just learning. While there are still days where I feel frustrated with my gut for being bloated after one bite of gluten or having a stomachache so painful all I can do is curl up in a ball on my bed, I'm grateful for the piece of me for ultimately being my biggest teacher.

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Is there an area of your life or health that could use some unconditional love? A piece of you that maybe, like me and my gut, has been a point of prolonged pain, discomfort or chronic illness?

How can show that piece of you more care and love? Instead of judging, shaming and trying to fix yourself, how can you be your own best parent and nurture yourself?

<3 <3 <3