5 Women Physician-Founded Wellness Retreats You Need to Check Out
We’re 18 months into a generation-defining global health event, and physicians and healthcare workers have never needed support like they do now. As summer comes to a close and we look forward to fall and winter, slowing down takes on a new meaning. Sometimes we need something more than a good night’s sleep, meditation, or a relaxing walk. Physicians — especially women physicians, who take on extra burdens at home and at work — need and deserve time to process, heal, and reset. We hope this list of physician-founded wellness retreats inspires you to invest in yourself.
Institute of Physician Wellness
The Institute of Physician Wellness was founded by Dr. Kathy Stepien, MD, FAAP, in 2016 to help physicians get closer to the things that matter most: meaningful work and living your best life. Dr. Stepien (a board-certified pediatrician) began this journey to help manage her own burnout, and since that it’s grown into a movement to transform medicine. This resonates more than ever with physician burnout at critical highs, and Dr. Stepien’s program offers coaching, training and retreats designed specifically to help physicians create a balanced, meaningful life.
The retreats are opportunities to reset, connect with other physicians, and prioritize yourself, while benefiting from physician-specific programming like one-on-ones with physician life coaches. Check out the schedule for this year: the Physician Wellness Fall Retreat 2021 coming up in October at the Miraval resort in Lenox, MA.
The Women Physicians Wellness Conference
The Women Physicians Wellness Conference offers three different retreats, based on women physicians’ needs: whether seeking to develop their careers, reflect on their success and chart a path forward, or connect with other women physicians. These conferences take place in beautiful, tropical settings (Aruba, Grand Cayman, and Amelia Island, FL) and seek to help women physicians find community, clarity, and career development.
Dr. Erica Howe, MD, founded the Women Physicians Wellness Conference in 2018 in order to bring women physicians together to connect and inspire them to find the courage to define success on their own terms. Dr. Howe is a prolific speaker, as well — she’s given more than 200 talks across the world on gaining clarity in your clinical career, time management, and boundary setting. Check out their 2022 schedule here.
Mindful Coaching + Yoga Retreat for Women Physicians
Dr. Jessie Mahoney is a woman, physician, mom, wife, certified yoga instructor, and creator of a five-day wellness retreat that focuses on mindfulness and yoga. In Santa Margarita, CA, guests are immersed in a peaceful, nourishing environment designed to replenish. Dr. Mahoney has been offering life coaching to physicians since 2018, when she found herself dissatisfied with her career and life. Now, she helps others with a mindful coaching practice that includes clients from varying walks of life — from fellows at Stanford and residents to dentists, attorneys, physical therapists, parents, and spouses. Learn more about Dr. Mahoney’s journey here.
Women Physicians Adventure Retreat
If you’re looking for something a little more energetic, Dr. Kristin Yates has created an adventure-filled getaway that’s even open to partners and kids! Over the course of a long weekend, attendees play, learn and connect in picturesque New Hampshire. If you’ve read this far in the post, Dr. Yates’ story will be a familiar one: despite a high-achieving career, Dr. Yates found herself in serious need of a reset to align her life with her core values. Today, she helps working moms with high-stress jobs recalibrate and listen to their inner wisdom in order to become more confident, fulfilled and balanced. The most recent retreat was just this past August 2021, but we’ll be keeping an eye out for future retreats. In the meantime, check out her Imposter to Unstoppable podcast, as well as her Conscious Confidence course.
The Centre for Physician Wellness Retreat
The Center for Physician Wellness was founded by Dr. Irina Mihaescu, a psychiatrist in clinical practice, in order to help physicians find more joy and meaning in medicine. Through training and coaching, their mission is to teach physicians the tools and skills to not just survive as a physician, but to thrive. The Healer Physician Retreat offers deep rest and rejuvenation in Northern California, where Dr. Mihaescu is joined by other women physician leaders in a five-day retreat focused on yoga, healing and alignment. With mineral springs, old forests to explore, and the stunning Mt. Shasta nearby, this retreat offers nourishment and rest.
We hope these resources help you consider what you really need to replenish — we love the mission of women physician-focused retreats, but even a weekend away alone or visiting friends might be exactly what you need right now. Whatever it is, please take time and create space for yourself.