The Healing Emotional Pain Retreat is an extended version of our signature Grief, Loss and Difficult Emotions Retreat. The extra time allows us to have both a more relaxed pace and be able to include additional activities to deepen the experience.
This retreat is for people who have experienced losses or emotional upheaval:
The Healing Emotional Pain Retreat can help you find a new vision for your life. It can serve as a springboard for new energy, purpose and direction.
About 20 years ago I felt emotionally wounded and I needed a retreat like this, but I didn't know where to find it or even how to look for it. I was stuck in my life and work, and in my marriage.
I just couldn't change my old story, despite years of psychotherapy and other work.
But then, with the help of a wise therapist, I began to explore in-depth emotional process at different retreats and my old story began to crumble.
In its place was hope and a new sense of purpose.
I ended up quitting my job as a director for a health agency to focus on emotional healing. For the next few years I plunged into deep emotional work, and the results are these retreats that combine the best tools I've found. They go well beyond talking about issues, into where we are actually stuck, which is the feelings buried in our bodies.
Most approaches to working with grief, loss and difficult feelings focus on your thoughts. If you do a google search for "healing emotional pain" for example, you will come across a lot of pages focusing on different mental tips to help you with your pain. such as focusing on changing your thoughts and judgements. Here is an example.
The idea is that our emotions are based on what we think. But working on emotions through thoughts and feelings can be a difficult and slow process, and almost impossible for many people.
Our approach is different, it is much more direct and it works dramatically better and more quickly: We focus on your feelings, your emotions, and help you feel them fully.
At this retreat we create enough safety and support so that you can experience and move through your emotions. Emotions change as you allow them to express themselves. You immediately feel better, freer and more alive. You get relief.
Most of us can't do this on our own. We need help. That is why we offer these retreats.
When we are caught up in uncomfortable feelings like grief, anger or anxiety, our brains try to manage the feelings by avoiding them. We suppress these feelings in our bodies and end up trapped in our heads. Or, if we are too filled with feelings, we feel like we are drowning in emotions, unable to do anything.
It takes energy to suppress our feelings, so we can find ourselves exhausted and listless, and even depressed. At the retreats we reclaim that energy and it becomes passion, vitality and aliveness.
The power of a loving group combined with skilled facilitation supports us to do the deep emotional work in a way that is much easier, quicker and less painful than trying to do it ourselves. We can go much deeper with a group of fellow journeyers compared to working one-on-one.
To set the stage for the deep work we first spend some time to create a safe environment. This safety helps our brains and bodies to relax which is the first step in helping us work with feelings.
At the Healing Emotional Pain Retreat we create safety through a variety of activities. We eat together and get to know each other. Activities are carefully designed to help each person connect with everyone else. We agree to strict confidentiality so people can feel free to talk about their lives without fear.
During the get to know each other phase, participants learn and begin to practice specific Skills of Loving.
By learning and then practicing these skills we create a powerful, healing environment where everyone feels accepted and valued. We create a safe container.
That takes us directly into the next part of the retreat.
The heart of the Healing Emotional Pain Retreat is where each participant spends time in the center of the circle with Jon. When it is your turn, Jon helps relax and breath deeply, deep into the feelings inside your body. You start to let those feelings come to the surface.
Jon is skilled at helping people feel their feelings and safely express them.
With the power of a loving community, participants just let go into what is arising, and to work those feelings through to the other side. There is a natural body wisdom that we each can access as we learn to trust our body's wisdom.
Often the emotional pain is layered, with one feeling closer to awareness that others, so as it is released other feelings can be experienced and also transformed. Grief, fear and anger are often intertwined like this.
We go from pain to joy. The uncomfortable feelings, when expressed, change and move naturally in the direction of healing, towards the source of all feeling, which is love.
It is hard for our brains to accept that they are not in charge of everything. Many of us want to know ahead exactly what is going to happen. But the mystery is that much of the work happens outside of our brains, in our bodies, which is where we hold these uncomfortable feelings. As the body releases we feel better, and our brains gradually understand what has happened. This is experiential learning. It is about the power of love to transform even the darkest emotions.
The last part of the healing emotional pain retreat is focused on integration. Each participant starts to develop a plan for their future that incorporates their learnings from the retreat. We gradually move from the depth work of the weekend to our day-to-day lives. We practice grounding skills, including helping to clean the retreat space which has served us well.
The retreat is open to all those who can benefit, regardless of their spiritual beliefs. People attend from all sorts of religious and non-religious backgrounds, and all are welcome.
Here are some of the benefits people have experienced from the Healing Emotional Pain Retreat:
The retreats are limited to 10-12 participants. The fee includes shared housing and all meals, except for the first night's pot luck. It starts on Wednesday at 5 pm and ends on Sunday by noon. (Florida retreat ends at 10 am.)
For participants who snore or want more privacy, there is an option to stay at a local motel–contact Jon (see below) for more information.
You are encouraged to register early as most of our retreats fill well ahead of time. A deposit of $300 reserves your space and it is the date we receive your deposit that determines your enrollment. The remainder is due at the retreat.
Refund policy for the retreat: your deposit will be refunded, minus a $75 administration fee, up to 21 days before the retreat start date. After that, the deposit will be forfeited.
A short phone interview (10-15 minutes) is requested to help you and Jon decide if this retreat work is appropriate for you. You can reach Jon by sending him a message (see bottom of page) with your phone number and the best times to call.
Jon Terrell is an expert in helping people love more fully, for deeper, more trusting relationships in all areas of life. Jon believes that most of us carry around old emotional wounds that, when healed, opens us up to the joy and light available in each present moment. For his full bio, go here.
"It was a miracle. Thank you so much for having all of us into your home and creating such an amazing and healing experience. I went there with intentions for myself and didn't want to leave without healing in my heart and change in myself.
I don't know where to start with how life changing and powerful what you are doing is to me and everyone else. I know what I saw and witnessed in each person's journey there changed them. I saw a different face and hope and glow and love in every single person when we left. It was soooo beautiful!
I know I am changed and that I will never be the same. I found what I was needing in my heart and soul for so many years. I just couldn't do it all alone. I needed what I experienced there with everyone and I know I need to continue with this connectedness to keep elevating to where my soul and heart long to be.
My heart is still overflowing with love and warmth it's truly perfect.I can't wait to come back!!!"
Michele Smith, CT.
"That was the best weekend of my life!! I feel quite different; the "worthlessness" is gone and I'm seeing through new eyes, feeling through new emotions and my bod feels good! I'm keeping the flames burning here and at the same time relaxing into it.
Before I came I was truly depressed. The loss of my job and closing of my beloved business had me very worried. I had personalized those losses and began to think and feel myself as worthless and unable to work my way into another career. I just didn’t have the energy. My interactions with other people were dull and fruitless. I felt that I had nothing to bring to the table.
At the retreat an unwinding occurred and I found my Deep Self again. Because of the work we did I became very strong in myself and found that creative, joyful self. I wasn't afraid any more! It really was as though the sun came out and I was filled with joy. Life is richer.
Since my return home, I have kept that kernel of joy and found that I am much more capable in my life. I’ve had several job interviews and I continue happily searching for what I want to do next.
One of my very good friends remarked, “You’ve changed, you are like yourself, only more.” And that’s what it feels like to me also. I’m no longer stuck in discontent, but expanding from solid roots into this incredible life.
Thank you, thank you for your love and guidance, for fathering and holding me in that delicate place."
Michele Warren, Boulder, CO
"Jon created the most safe, sacred and powerful container which certainly enriched the weekend for me, along with the incredible encouragement from Jon and everyone. It made for a mind-altering and energy-moving experience, far exceeding my expectations! Under the grass there is GROUND and I will hold onto this how ever fast the earth spins! I am so grateful."
Scott Barber, VT