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THE ZEN SPEAKER'S WRITING RETREAT

"Talent is helpful in writing, but guts are absolutely necessary."
Jessamyn West

 

This is for you, yes, you.

 

Imagine 11 hours of relaxation with space and time totally focused on your creativity. You’ll be in the heart of Las Vegas and feel like you’re a million miles from any troubles, challenges or expectations.

 

This is for you, yes, you.

 

You have information that needs to be shared in a way only you can. It may be a story that will let others know they aren’t alone; it may change the way your audience looks at an issue; it may move people to laughter, tears and then action; it may move people from a place of mediocrity to excellence; or it may bring them peace and joy. You have something to share in your unique voice.

 

This is for you, yes, you.

 

You’ve been asked to give a keynote and, although you’re excited, you keep procrastinating writing it. You have always wanted to give a TED talk but you don’t know if you would be good enough or your idea is right for that venue. You find yourself giving numerous short speeches: you introduce others, you give out donor/employee appreciation gifts or you accept awards—those short ones are more time consuming to write than a keynote! You just took over as President of your favorite nonprofit board and you want to blow their socks off at the first meeting. You’re often asked to speak. You turn down the requests and you think it’s because you’re afraid of public speaking; maybe you’re afraid of speech writing, too. Everyone, absolutely everyone, says you need to share your story.

 

This is for you, yes, you.
 

 

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” 
Maya Angelou

 

Take a deep breath. Now imagine yourself with a small group of 11 others feeling what you’re feeling. This time, though, it’s going to be different. No excuses. You’re in the right place, at the right time, with the right people. And you’re leaving with the speech(es) you’ve had in your subconscious for a long time. Out of your head, out of your heart, on paper and on the way to those who need and want to hear it. Finally. We will brainstorm, we’ll listen, we’ll write. We’ll laugh, we’ll cry (I hope because I love the catharsis of it), we’ll bond and we’ll write. We will be nourished by the food, the space, and the loving support.

 

This is for you, yes, you.

 

 

We’ll meet...

9 a.m.- 4 p.m. on Saturday, October 12

We will do creativity exercises and mind-map the speech you want to work on during our time together; we will break out into various areas of the retreat space to enjoy alone-time writing while being checked on to make sure you’re in the flow and not stuck in resistance; we will share any challenges and successes so we can decrease the first and increase the second; we will celebrate the progress you’ve made on almost completing your speech! 

9 a.m.- 1 p.m. on Sunday, October 13

We will continue opening our creative channels; we’ll complete our speeches; we’ll edit them to make sure it is your voice that will be heard loud and clear because you have an audience waiting to hear you—only you; and we will end by celebrating your decision to give yourself this time and by expressing gratitude to each other for the support you shared. 

There is a chance you’ll leave without a completed speech. Do not despair. If that happens, it will be because you were so busy ridding yourself of unspoken shame to make room for your creative soul to shine through. And now you are free. Free to write. And if or when you’re ready, free to speak.

This is for you, yes, you.

Limited to 12 seats.

11 hours of one weekend of your life that will change many of your future hours.

$1,500 is the investment in yourself.

If it isn’t for you, don’t force it. If it is for you, don’t resist it.

If I didn’t know from my personal experience how a well-written, well-prepared, authentically delivered speech affects the audience, I wouldn’t encourage this. But I do, so I am.

 

You knew from the beginning that this is for you. Yes. You!

Messages to You from Previous Attendees

“I attended the most INCREDIBLE writing retreat facilitated by my dearest friend, Amy Ayoub. Guided by her wisdom and insight, as she gently pushed us into a space of expansion. We each became better a version of ourselves. What a gift!” 

—  Rebecca Prephan