Highly Sensitive Therapist Retreat

The Highly Sensitive Therapist Retreat is a dream - a transformative and educational experience where you can prioritize self-care while getting CEs and connecting deeply with your community!

Our ability to feel great empathy and deeply process is one of our greatest strengths as Highly Sensitive Therapists (HSTs), but can leave us feeling:

  • Empty, Exhausted, and Overwhelmed

  • More Impacted by Our Clients’ Experiences

  • Shame About Not Being Able to Do More

Managing our depletion and overwhelm is possible when we embrace our unique needs, prioritize a consistent self-care routine and spend time in community with other Sensitive People.

Although it’s essential to take time away to replenish ourselves, it can actually be a bit stressful for HSTs because we need quiet time and to not feel overscheduled, something rarely accessible at most overnight gatherings or conferences.

The Highly Sensitive Therapist Retreat was intentionally designed to be different:

  • slower pace

  • more downtime

  • private room AND bath

  • plenty of opportunities to replenish

Are You Ready to Feel Calm, Supported and Restored?

Sensitive Therapist Retreat Feel Calm Restored

Join Us for the 2019 HST Retreat in Phoenicia, New York

September 29-October 2, 2019
at the Menla Retreat Center

See what makes this retreat such a special experience that you don't want to miss...

Private Room + Bath
To ensure you have space to decompress, all rooms will be single-occupancy and include deluxe accommodations with private bathroom and organic linens.

Continuing Education (CEs) Included
10 CEs will be included at no additional cost for Psychologists, Social Workers, Marriage & Family Therapists, Licensed Professional Counselors and Mental Health Counselors.

Downtime + Self-Care Breaks!
Unlike other trainings, conferences or retreats, this event has been created with the needs of HSTs in mind with only two workshops per day and a four-hour afternoon break for lunch and self-care. During your self-care break, you can enjoy a yoga classes, guided or solo hike, spa visit, exercise at the fitness center or relax quietly in your private room.

Become Part of a Community
One of the five essentials to thriving as a Highly Sensitive Person is to spend time in community where we can enjoy the rarity of shared experiences. Being around others who deeply understand us and use the same language can be healing and transformative.

Ongoing Connection
To support the connections you make during the retreat, there will be an ongoing monthly video call and closed Facebook group just for retreat attendees.

Serene Natural Setting
Menla’s 325 acres of tranquil mountain forests and streams are tucked away in the priceless seclusion of the Catskills and feature a range of indoor and outdoor amenities to calm your nervous system.

Mindfulness Practices
Each day you’ll have an opportunity to immerse in self-reflective mindfulness practices such as gentle yoga, guided meditation or sound healing.

Spa + Bodywork Services
The Menla spa features 10 private therapy rooms, Ayurvedic steam box therapy, steam rooms, traditional Finnish and Japanese far-infrared saunas, deep herbal soaking tubs, two-person jacuzzi tub, rain showers, and some of the best massage and bodywork services you can find anywhere. A spa pass is included with every retreat ticket which provides access to the sauna or steam rooms. Bodywork sessions are extra.

Organic + Allergen-Friendly Menu
Designed around locally and seasonally sourced ingredients, including produce harvested from the on-site organic garden and local farms, Menla’s dining emphasizes plant-based dishes, allergen-friendly choices with meat options available at lunch and dinner.

“I would recommend this retreat to anyone who is an HST. This was one of the few events in my life where I felt accepted and could relate with every person in the room. Everything was planned with the needs of HSPs in mind, from the seating arrangements to the breaks in the schedule. They really thought of everything”.
-2018 Retreat Attendee

Learn from an HSP Expert: The Science and Self-Care of High Sensitivity

Our curriculum will be taught by HSP Expert, Alane Freund, MS, MA, LMFT who is a mentee to Dr. Elaine Aron and presents the material in an accessible and lighthearted way.

In this four-part workshop series, you’ll be able to more fully understand yourself as a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP), what self-care practices are essential and take away tools to use in your clinical work.

Through self-reflection exercises and small group discussion, you’ll learn strategies for HSPs managing overstimulation, assess for unique symptoms of anxiety and explore differential diagnoses.

Lastly, you’ll discover the five essential goals for long-term self-care that will benefit every HSP and why self-care is so essential for us.

10 Continuing Education Credits Included!

Meet Your Presenters

Alane Freund, Highly Sensitive Person Expert

Alane Freund, MS, MA, LMFT

Through two and a half decades as a therapist and working closely with Dr. Elaine Aron, Alane Freund, MS, MA, LMFT has developed and implemented programs for Highly Sensitive People, children, families, and the clinicians who serve them in her California therapy and team building practice, Heart and Mind Equine. An Advanced Certified Consultant on High Sensitivity, Ms. Freund holds Masters’ degrees in clinical psychology and school counseling. Ms. Freund specializes in family therapy and education with and about highly sensitive people. A skilled facilitator and therapist, an HSP herself, and the parent of a teen highly sensitive boy, she teaches workshops, offers consultation, and leads groups and retreats, including the HSPs & Horses retreats in northern California with Elaine Aron, PhD.

April Snow, MA, AMFT

April Snow is a psychotherapist in downtown San Francisco who specializes in helping Highly Sensitive Introverts discover the importance of downtime to conquer anxiety and live a life on their own terms that allows them to thrive. She is also passionate about supporting Highly Sensitive Therapists to have more sustainable practices by embracing their Sensitive Strengths and has created many resources for HSTs such as this annual retreat.

“I attended last year and it was such a meaningful experience for me. The amenities are amazing but it wasn’t even about that for me—it was the connections I made, feeling at ease in conversation with the other attendees (I’m someone who has struggled with social anxiety), and as a result of those connections and the content from the workshops, gaining the confidence that the trait IS real and valid and important. Also, April does an AMAZING job with all the little details in planning the retreat, which really helped with my anxiety." -2018 Retreat Attendee

Retreat Schedule

Each retreat includes space for reflection and downtime while creating opportunities for meaningful connection.

Sunday 9/29/19
3-6pm | Check-in + Spa Hours
6-7pm | Dinner
7-8pm | Welcome Session
8:30-9:30pm | Yoga Nidra
10pm | Quiet Downtime Begins

Monday 9/30/19
8-9am | Breakfast
9am-12pm | Workshop
12-1pm | Lunch
1-4pm | Self-Care Break (rest, spa, yoga or guided hike)
4-6pm | Workshop
6-7pm | Dinner
7:30-8:30pm | Healing Sound Bath (optional)
9pm | Quiet Downtime Begins

Tuesday 10/1/19
8-9am | Breakfast
9am-12pm | Workshop
12-1pm | Lunch
1-4pm | Self-Care Break (rest, spa, yoga or guided hike)
4-6pm | Workshop
6-7pm | Dinner
7:30-8:30pm | Guided Meditation (optional)
9pm | Quiet Downtime Begins

Wednesday 10/2/19
8-9am | Breakfast
8-10am | Checkout
10-11am | Closing Session
12-1pm | Lunch
11am-1pm | Depart

"I loved the retreat last year and am really looking forward to this year's retreat. As much as I got out of the first retreat, what I continue to get out of the monthly HST Retreat Zoom calls is even more impactful. Those calls are my "saving grace" each month. The support and connection is so powerful. I can't recommend the retreat enough!!"
- 2018 Retreat Attendee

All-Inclusive Sensitive Therapist Retreat

All-Inclusive Price Includes:

  • Private Room + Bath

  • Organic + Allergen-Friendly Meals from Sunday Dinner to Wednesday Lunch

  • All Workshops with HSP Expert, Alane Freund, LMFT and Discussion Groups

  • 10 Continuing Education Credits for Licensed Psychologists, Social Workers, Marriage + Family Therapists, Professional Counselors, and Mental Health Counselors

  • Spa Pass: Sauna + Steam Room Access
    (massages + bodywork extra)

  • Yoga Classes

  • Guided Hikes

  • Sound Healing + Meditation Workshops

  • Access to Menla’s Fitness Center, Tennis Courts, Pool (weather permitting), Gardens, Pond and Gift Shop

  • In-Room WiFi

  • On-Site Parking

  • Post-Retreat Bonus: Private Facebook Community for Retreat Attendees

  • Post-Retreat Bonus: Full Year of Monthly Online Gatherings to Continue Connection + Support

Retreat Cost

  • 4-Day Overnight Ticket = $2,495

  • 4-Day Commuter Pass = $1,495 (includes everything except room and board)

Sensitive Therapist Reflect

“Attending the Highly Sensitive Therapist Retreat allowed me to deepen my understanding of what it means to be a Highly Sensitive Person. It was really refreshing to get to talk to other Highly Sensitive Therapists.  We skipped right past the small talk and dove deep into conversation.  I really left the retreat with a knowing that my Sensitivity is a Strength, not something I have to hide.”
-2018 Retreat Attendee

Highly Sensitive Therapist Continuing Education

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the nearest airport?
If traveling from out of town, the two closest major airports are Albany International Airport in Albany, NY, and Stewart Airport in Newburgh, NY.

See the Menla Directions page for more information about transportation.

How can I get from the airport to the Retreat location?
Transportation to and from the Retreat will be the responsibility of each individual. See the Menla Directions page for more information about transportation options.

Do I need to rent a car?
Only if you plan to travel locally during the evenings or break times. All workshops and the dining hall are within walking distance from your housing location.

Can I arrive a day early or stay a day late to accommodate my flight schedule?
Menla does allow guests to book extra nights, based on availability. However, please be aware that unless the kitchen is open for another retreat, they will not be able to provide you with meals (and the accommodations fee will be prorated accordingly). Bring your own ready-made food.

Please contact Menla directly to arrange extended accommodations.

What type of food will be served? Can you accommodate food allergies?
Seasonal, organic, local and vegetarian foods will be featured at every meal. Vegan options and dietary restrictions will be accommodated by request. You can share your dietary needs on the registration form. Chicken or fish will be served at lunch and dinner.

Meet the Chef and See a Sample 4-Day Menu Here

How many people will I share a bathroom with?
None! All rooms include a private bathroom.

Do I need to bring my own linens?
All bedding and towels will be provided. We do recommend bringing anything you need to maximize comfort such as a favorite pillow. Toiletries will not be provided.

Will I be able to participate in all the workshops or have to choose?
You get to have it all with no decision-fatigue! We have created a schedule with the needs of HSTs in mind with only two workshops per day, so you can soak up all the insightful information and tools from every workshop.

Do you offer a scholarship or sliding scale rate?
At this time, we are not able to offer reduced fee slots, but hope to offer more low-fee options in the future.

If I choose the monthly payment plan, will my card be automatically charged?
Yes, your card will be charged on the same day each month, corresponding with the date of your first payment.

What is your cancellation policy?
Life happens! You’re so clear you want to be there, and yet something pops up. We get it. At the same time, we know you understand the challenges of planning a live event. If you feel you must cancel your ticket, our refund policy is as follows: Refunds less a $100.00 Administration Fee will be given for requests received in writing via email prior to June 29, 2019. Following this date, no refunds will be given due to our contractual obligations with Menla. Any questions about refunds or tickets shall be directed to info@hstretreat.com.

Past Retreats

Highly Sensitive Therapist Retreat Santa Cruz 2018
Highly Sensitive Therapist Retreat Dr. Elaine Aron

Santa Cruz HST Retreat: July 2018
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Elaine Aron


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