What happens at a men’s retreat?

Dudefluencer: Men's Retreat

Note: This post is sponsored by NealConlon.com

When people meet me for the first time, their impressions are predictable. “He’s a little loud; he’s a little rough around the edges.” I get it, I’m tall, got a bad-ass beard, the whole works.

However, there is a powerful thing that happens immediately upon spending a bit of time with me. 

You find that this broad-shouldered, tattooed, bearded, Marine Corps veteran is kind, honest, ethical, and deeply committed to his mission. He is passionate about personal development and helping men show up in today’s world with congruence, accountability, integrity, and healthy habits.

For the past two years, I’ve been facilitating men’s retreats and coaching on business and masculinity. After hitting a personal rock bottom, he has spent years investing in himself. Including spiritual work in India, sweat lodges, working with Tony Robbins, plant medicine, mediation, and yoga.

After speaking with thousands of men, I noticed trends in what men are/were missing in today’s world. I broke those down into the three pillars that make up the foundation of the men’s circles and virtual accountability groups I run: accountability, integrity, and habits.

I felt compelled to create a platform where men could have an open and safe place to share their challenges and have tactical practices to put into place to edit their lives to operate from a place of confidence.

Enter Press Forward.

Emergence is a three-day retreat where men get the opportunity to grow, push themselves, and eventually press forward to take back the power in their lives. That means self-reflection. That means feeling alive in their own skin. That means building and strengthening the relationship with yourself, your family, your friends.

Our three-day men’s retreat starts with a welcome meal and is followed by an opening fire ceremony. A bit nervous and anxious, I ask the men to form what is referred to as a container, i.e., the four agreements for the weekend.

1. This is a safe and confidential space.
2. We let men speak. 
3. We will support all men here. 
4. If you cannot commit yourself fully to the present moment, you do not need to be here.

As the men physically unpack, they often begin to metaphorically unpack and share their backgrounds, obstacles, and challenges in life. The next day provides adventure, compassion, and introspection opportunities.

Sometimes we go hiking or climbing. Other times we are meditating, practicing yoga, or participating in an hour of silence. Maybe it’s Wim Hof Breathe Work and a cold plunge. These activities are just the background to the real action- the introspection and self-reflection going on with these men.

By the second night at the fire, I noticed something about the men. They’re different. They’re open, honest, vulnerable, and ready to conquer their lives.

As the sun rises on the third and final day of our adventure, we begin by building a support system for everyone. We set goals together; offer counsel and support. They identify weak points in their health, wealth, relationships, and mindset. They map out a clear path forward. This time though, with a team of brothers to be part of the journey with them when they leave.

After a weekend of change, that’s when life truly begins for these men. They leave with a new support system and team in place, a new outlook on life, a new beginning. I make sure to follow up with them for several weeks after the event with virtual group calls, coaching, and counsel.

So if you’re feeling lost, want to join a team of like-minded, progress-driven men, then join me, and press forward.

To attend a men’s circle retreat, visit https://www.nealconlon.com/menscircle/

To find more details and learn more about me, follow me @iamnealconlon on social media.

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