Jun 03
June 3, 2013

My Trip to Sedona

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Over memorial weekend I went on a trip to Sedona, Arizona with 60 entrepreneurs. While I had met a few people that were attending the trip, I basically didn’t KNOW anyone. I went into it with an open mind, knowing that I was having the opportunity to connect with many like-minded individuals.

I arrived in the evening on Friday night just in time for dinner. I will try to give you the full list of activities we did, as well as the conversations I had. At dinner I sat at a table with 5 others I had never met. We talked about what we do, where are from, and bonded over the common feeling of moving from hunger to satisfaction. Tired after dinner and the long day of traveling, two new friends walked me back to my hotel. We laughed a lot from the restaurant to the hotel and I knew at that moment it was going to be a great trip!

DAY 1 – Saturday: I woke up early and went on a hike with many others. I observed myself as I was a lot more outgoing in a group environment. I extended myself to others and I asked questions to get to know them better. I also was open to sharing more about myself.

This group was particularly interesting and interested. We all were entrepreneurs – ranging from different levels of success. Some sold their company for 250 million while others were just beginning to start their companies. But, we shared the bond of being driven, innovative, slightly type A and wanting to make a difference in the world.

We attend a workshops which included a vulnerability exercise. We were invited to share something that makes us vulnerable. A very successful entrepreneur who is a millionaire shared how amazing his life is but sometimes he just doesn’t feel loved. Another shared that his father passed away when he was 12 and that he feels sometimes he finds himself with older businessman feeling like that son that just wants to say, “yes.” I shared about my days in my early twenties of anxiety and depression which included taking ambien to help me fall asleep and drinking lots of alcohol in social settings to alleviate anxiety. I’m surprised I didn’t end up in the Hialeah drug rehab program. In addition a person shared how she has a million dollars worth of holdings in businesses but she is so cash poor she has to ask her mom for money from time to time.

So often as entrepreneurs and human beings we spend time comparing ourselves to others while we are suffering with our behind the scenes reel of knowing the truth of our situation. Sometimes even feeling like a fraud to the world. But the truth is, we all share struggles no matter how “successful” we are. There’s a saying from AA that says, “don’t compare your inside to someone else’s outside.” This was relevant here. Challenges run through all of our lives no matter what and we can all connect on this human level.

After this exercise, I noticed I immediately felt close to everyone in the group. I also felt like I could relate in some way to everyone in the group. So often we hold back and end up keeping ourselves at a distance from one another. Not opening our hearts only makes us feel more isolated and alone. Vulnerability is the pathway to living a more connected life .{TWEET IT}

After the vulnerability workshop, we went to an extreme ropes course. Doing an activity like this is a a doorway into how you handle fear. Do you just go for it, or get afraid and stop? Are you afraid of falling or do you trust yourself?

Life is a course, how do you want to travel through it?

After the course, being hungry and tired, I went back to my room, showered and got ready to go to dinner. Dinner was amazing and it provided more opportunities to engage with new people and make new friends.

DAY 2- Sunday: We began the day with another morning hike. The natural beauty in Sedona is just breathtaking. The red rocks made me feel connected to the earth. It’s very different than seeing buildings in New York 😉

We  then attended a Law of Attraction workshop. We discussed how our emotions provide us information to what we are attracting in our life. In a very basic way – if you are feeling good, you are more likely to attract good into your life. It put us more in touch with ways in which we are  thinking about lack instead of what we want to attract. I collaborated with some of my new girlfriends on the trip and we asked each other questions to help one another focus more on what we want rather than what we don’t want. 

What areas of your life are you running away from? What are you running towards?

After the Law of Attraction workshop we attended a course called Tactivate. Tactivate is a course developed by special operation veterans to relate military teachings to entrepreneurs. For example, making sure you have situational awareness, how to be calm under pressure and pivot in situations you are stuck. We learned how to put on a tourniquet and carry people if they were injured. These were very practical skills and I am glad to have the as part of my life skills.

Sunday night dinner was very enjoyable. Chef Caen Conte and Joy Houston did a fabulous job making a delicious and healthy meal.

Day 3- Monday: Time to go home. Had a great breakfast with new girlfriends and made plans to see each other soon. I packed my bags feeling exhausted, fulfilled and complete.

I learned a lot on this trip and it will hold a very special place in my heart. The power of community is strong and it has been something missing in my life. I also have been missing good close girlfriends and feeling a sense of belonging.  I came home from the trip not only KNOWING myself more but KNOWING others more. I met incredible people that I am able to call my friends. After I got married in April 2012, I made a commitment to myself to make new friends and go on a trip by myself at least once a year. I forever want to be expanding my sense of self.

When was the last time you connected or called a friend?

When was the last time you stepped out of your comfort zone to get to know yourself more?

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