While so much of what happens at a Campowerment women’s weekend happens because of the (wild, wacky, wonderful) Campers who show up to play, a huge part of the experience is contingent upon the Experts: those gifted thought leaders + warriors who show up dedicated to helping Campers (YOU!) elevate your lives.
During my 34 years in TV, I met a lot of people who were making jaw-dropping strides in their respective fields. I stayed in contact with many of them, and knew I’d be back in touch when time and place and, most importantly, purpose could collide.
When I founded Campowerment five (and a half) years ago, I already had a deck of empowering, inspiring people I knew could bring insight to women who needed it. The right ones, well…the rights ones always make it happen…and now here we are, 80 Campowerment Experts (25+ retreats) later, with some new game-changers in tow, who I’ve met along the way.
Our plates are so stinking full, we don’t really deal with the issues that challenge us until they’re on fire. Sometimes, we have more than one blaze needing to be extinguished, but we’re so focused on the one with the biggest flames, everything else gets stuffed down to the bottom of the list. That’s why we bring such a large array of Experts to our Campowerment weekends: because you often don’t even know what you need to be looking at until it’s in your face, with a solution being offered.
Here’s why I tapped this coterie of Experts for our Poconos camp September 21-24. These Experts trailblazers in their fields who are ready to help Campers like you, reach your full potential…
I’ll bet almost every one of has a book within us, if only we took the time to write our stories. So many past Campers have shared stories of pushing through challenges, of love and loss and bravery, often found or found again at Campowerment. That’s why I invited Alicia Dunams, an author trainer, who teaches people to find the stories that live inside them, and figure out how to begin the process of creating and selling their story. Alicia’s been running her popular “Bestseller in a Weekend” seminar all over the globe, and she’s bringing a slice of that insight to our September program.
For those of you who just want to get better at getting your thoughts out of your head or your heart and onto the page, my mom — whom I have come to share with the world — will be back wearing her Journaling Counselor hat. Even if you don’t think you can write, Grandy can teach you how to awaken your inner voice, to start manifesting your dreams and writing your legacy.
As Grandy likes to say, “growing old is not for sissies,” so I asked Brooke Steiger, Nurse Practitioner, to teach us how to ease into aging by talking about preventive and restorative medicine. A former Oncological Nurse, Brooke wanted to help people find ways to avoid getting sick, which led her to the innovative practice that is Evolved Science on NYC’s Fifth Avenue. Brooke takes an integrative approach to health and wellness, blending Western science and technology with Eastern modalities and holistic, alternative methods, that make sense of everything from inflammation and allergies to gluten and gut health, depression, sleep and all those other health issues you know it’s time to wrap your head around.
Then there’s esteemed Author and NYC Family Therapist Lois Nachamie, talking about the full family life cycle—from birth to death. She’ll help you prepare to take charge of the tough stuff that goes along with caring for your aging parents, while working out those parent-child issues that kept you stuck for so long…you know, the ones you may be passing down to your kids without even realizing it.
For those of you dealing with loss retroactively…or grieving over loss that’s coming, I’m so excited to introduce you to Suzanne Wachtel, a Grief Therapist who invites you to open up and share those feelings you keep locked in the vault that is your heart. She’s not talking in theory; she’s faced some big sh*t herself, so believe you me: she walks her talk…and in her deep diving she can help you release some of the things you not even realize are still weighing you down.
So many Campers (and Inner Circle members) are asking about how to recover from profound loss, we doubled-down in this arena, and invited Denna Babul, the founder of the Fatherless Daughter Movement, to join us at camp. Denna lost her own father as a child, and as an adult, is still learning how to turn the pain of that loss into power. She’ll will help you harness your own resilience to propel yourself forward.
Coming to take a completely different approach to dealing with life’s stuff is Debra Borden, “The Sous Therapist,” a LCSW who infuses psychology into the traditional cooking demo, and can show you how the culinary arts can help you heal. This interactive Workshop will give you a (tasty) new perspective, and get you thinking about your life in a deliciously innovative new way.
Whatever stuff Campers come to work on, Handel Group Senior Life coach Marnie Nir is coming (back) to Campowerment to remind everyone of this: if you’re not 100 percent happy with where your life is right now, there’s no maybe about it, it’s definitely YOU. I love Marnie for many reasons, but mostly because she has zero tolerance for excuses. She’ll help you re-boot your life, re-examine existing relationships, and make plans to look for new partners, through the lens of your three Hs: your head, heart and hoo-ha. She’s also talking about how to have those difficult conversations you keep avoiding. Yes, those. Marnie’s Workshops are not for the faint of heart, but often they’re where shift happens.
Since we’re talking about ‘hoo-has’… I invited our favorite SEXpert Freda Hobbs to the East Coast, to make the mountains shake with laughter and turn the topic of sex on its ass. Freda’s a “shoot from the vajajy” life coach and a booming entrepreneur who’s a gifted educator, making the sex conversation accessible to everyone. Let’s be honest: we could all use a sexual-energy boost. She’ll teach you to stop putting everyone else’s needs first, and answer those questions you’re too embarrassed to even Google, in a group dialogue that’s open to everyone.
I wanted all activities to be open to everyone, which is why yoga instructor Heather Berg is coming back to the Campowerment.. She calls her classes a work-in, instead of a work-out, and her classes are open to yogis of all ages and stages. She’ll also be teaching a class or two on the lake, on standup paddle boards. No experience necessary.
She’s a big-time spinning teacher at Equinox gym, and she’ll have your head spinning in her hilariously fun cycle classes at camp: Mychal Ertel’s is coming back by popular demand. No one does it like Mykey. She blasts the best work-out music, and provides positive feedback to inspire and empower you…trust me, she makes sweating fun, even when you thought you’d rather sleep in.
Think you’re too stressed out to sit still and meditate? Mindfulness/Meditation Instructor Anne Sussman, (we call her “Sussy”) swears she can teach you how. It’s not easy to shut down your brain and calm down, but Sussy will get you started, or teach you how to deepen a thriving practice. I now start every single day with a guided meditation…I don’t even brush my teeth till I take 15 to start my day going inward. You can too.
I’m really excited for you to meet Mercedes Soler, a fellow Network Journalist who covered the Globe across the sea of microphones from me. We even co-authored a book together back in 2005 (she was one of my original Miami Bombshells!), and she taught me so much about accessing my connection to Spirit. Mercedes was on assignment in Peru when she stumbled upon the shamanic mysticism in the Andes, and at camp, she’s going to help us create a traditional Andean ceremony that involves making an offering to the Universe in exchange for help or guidance.
Leslie McGuirk is a renowned and gifted astrologer and author…a Human Designer who can help you understand how the stars aligned the moment you were born and how to know what to do with that information to help guide you now. She’s the best Western astrologer I have ever met, and the information she shares will encourage you to grow past your astrological chart, and teach you how to understand the four elements (Earth, Fire, Water and Air) to help you better communicate.
More down to Earth comes Regina Bedoya, who will help you better understand your relationship to money. Money is an energy and a tool, and in this Workshop, you can begin to understand why some people attract it, and others don’t. If you want to better understand the psychology of saving vs. spending to working through feelings of abundance and scarcity, this one’s right on the money.
Of course, no retreat would be complete without Peggy Fitzsimmons, taking you into the woods to rediscover your true self. After getting her Ph.D from ASU, Peggy spent four years at the Omega Institute in NYC, helping people connect with their true selves. At Campowerment, she can empower you to connect with your inner voice and unearth what is hidden below…by taking in the gifts of Nature to help ground you.
Our retreats have always been ‘choose-your-own-adventure’ by nature, and this time, there’s so much to choose from, you’re going to want to let your heart guide you. I am so proud of the Expert lineup we’re bringing to our program in the Poconos and can’t wait to dig into all of it! If you’re already registered, keep an eye out for the schedule to drop…if you’re not, whatcha waiting for? Register to re-ignite your life with us at Sept 21-24 Campowerment in the Pocono Mountains at Camp IHC!