6 ways a digital nomad retreat can change your business and life

Your thoughts become your reality. 🔮

Back in November, I had a thought while in Bali:

This digital nomad life is pretty cool. What if I could help others experience this too... while helping them grow their businesses?

I shared this thought briefly in a roundup post of 2017 (check out #5 under "What I’m working towards this year") and then the messages hit my inbox:

"If you hold a retreat, I'd totally attend!"

"I would love to attend the retreat you’re thinking of running. Do you have a time of year in mind yet?"

6 ways a digital nomad retreat can change your business and life elise darma.png

"If you host it, I will come!"

Well that was unexpected.

A few weeks later, after a chat with my friends at Surf Office in Lisbon, I had a signup page launched and ready to go – sharing all the details of what would become the Surf 'N Work Retreat.

To my even greater surprise, by the time the early bird deadline hit, SEVEN people had signed up.

I guess this is happening.

Well, in a blink of an eye, June arrived and I found myself sitting on a stone bench in front of a café serving tosta mista, awaiting the arrival of the first attendee.

I wonder if they're nervous as much as I am.

The nerves disappeared once I met all the ladies who signed up for this adventure and realized how COOL they all were.

It was then that it hit me.

The idea that I had back in Bali had turned into a real. life. thing.

And that real life experience? It's hard to sum up in words.

(But I DOOO have a 90-second video. 😁)

To help sum up the experience, I turned to the attendees of the Surf 'N Work Retreat.

I asked them to share with me what they took away from the week we spent together in Lisbon.

So here are 6 ways an in-person digital nomad retreat can change your business and your life.

1. You'll create a new product or revenue stream

When great business minds come together, you never know how your business will change!

But what I DO know?

Your business will change for the better.

We're talking: new product ideas and new streams of revenue.

That's extra cha-ching we're ADDING to your business!

  Ruth Cooper-Dickson,    @ruthiecoops

Ruth Cooper-Dickson, @ruthiecoops

"The retreat gave me the exposure and time spent with phenomenal female entrepreneurs from all around the globe who have encouraged me to think outside of the box when it comes to the next stage of my business development.

As a result, I’m about to design, build and launch a unique product.

Not only that, the trip was hugely cathartic. Personally, I took onboard a huge amount of self-development over the entire week. Thanks Elise for a life-changing week."

2. You get strategies from an experienced group

You know when you ask for advice in a Facebook group and you get a ton of varied responses?

  • "100% – you need a website to launch your services."

  • "Pinterest is the ONLY platform you should care about."

  • "It's easy. Just pick up the phone and cold call people."

You're left with a lot of well-intentioned advice, but are still stuck on what move to make next.

Writer's block, analysis paralysis, fear of the unknown... whatever you call it, it sucks. And the best way to move past it?

Get help from people who've BEEN THERE, DONE THAT. 

Meaning, they are already at the finish line that *you* want to reach.

(That finish line looks different for all of us. So whoever you take advice from, choose wisely.)

  Andrea Arrizza,    @shadesofindigo8

Andrea Arrizza, @shadesofindigo8

"Before this retreat, I was suffering from a case of analysis by paralysis.

I lived too much inside my head in fear of making a mistake.

After getting in the 'hot seat' and sharing my struggles with a group of brilliant women, I gained quite a few insights.

One in particular stood out the most: trust the process.

Instead of focusing on the “what ifs,” I decided to focus on the end goal instead: finding out if the lifestyle is right for me."

3. You leave with a 6-month growth plan

Most in-person events go a little something like this:

  1. You commit to attend

  2. You attend and get all jazzed up about how your life is gonna change now

  3. You get home and you realize you have no plan of action to make that life change happen

  4. You go back to your old ways

With a digital nomad retreat, you get the opposite: you LEAVE with a growth plan in hand.

"When I decided to attend the retreat, I knew I would be six months into my business and was hoping it would be an excellent opportunity to review, recalibrate, reinvigorate and have a plan to move forward.

The Surf N’ Work Retreat did not disappoint.

The 'hot seat' sessions were especially valuable as I was able to get clear and unbiased feedback on my business.

And my 1:1 time with Elise left me with an exciting path to growth in the next six months."

4. You gain confidence and clarity

Hold on now!

Don't be so quick to brush this one off to the side like a crumb that's just fallen from your pastel de nata.

  • When you're drowning in options, you need → clarity.

  • When you're stalling on taking the next step, you need → confidence.

  • When you're feeling overwhelmed, you need → clarity.

  Erica Wildey,    @ericawildey

Erica Wildey, @ericawildey

I could go on, but I'll let Erica take it from here:

"Before the retreat, I didn’t have a business and felt confused and overwhelmed as to which direction to go.

The retreat has helped me gain confidence and clarity to drill down into a niche that I have expertise in and am passionate about.

I’m now working on an offering to launch and feeling excited about the next chapter."

...And I'm excited to see Erica TAKE OFF! 🦅

(Get it? Bird reference... 😁)

5. You'll experience personal growth – like WOAH

When it comes to describing the personal transformations that often occur when you try something totally new in life, I'm not sure I could do a better job than Alina.

Alina has her own story to share (which I can't wait to see happen on her Instagram and YouTube) but for now, I'll let Alina explain the transformation she experienced during the retreat.

"The Lisbon retreat was my best experience of my aware and conscious life.

  Alina Bivol,    @bivol_ali

Alina Bivol, @bivol_ali

Everything happens for a reason in this world so Elise brought together only phenomenal women who I resonated with so well. I was incredibly happy to be surrounded by people who surf on the same wave.

We got emotional, we discovered, we shared, we had fun, we enjoyed that fabulous, colorful city and we brainstormed about how to get our business at the level we want.

Going through this retreat, I experienced incomparable personal growth because I have been empowered and encouraged by successful, smart, beautiful women with a lifestyle that I admire.

Besides that, I got so many suggestions, ideas and inspiration from amazing Elise and the rest of the ladies who I already miss!

It was an unforgettable, life-changing experience, and the results are just starting!"

6. You'll feel more connected with people you've just met than friends you've known your whole life

Imagine this...

You've had a nugget of an idea for a while now.

And in the last few months, you've been putting that idea out there, slowly... bit by bit.

👉 On your Instagram, your personal Facebook profile and maybe on your website or blog, too.

But then, you get messages like these:

  • "Do you really have enough experience to be charging for that?"

  • "Oh honey, wouldn't a job with benefits be better?"

  • "You're just using your looks to get attention."

And the worst part? These comments and questions don't always come from strangers on the Internet... they come from the mouths of family and friends.

6 ways a digital nomad retreat can change your business and life elise darma lisbon retreat.JPG

(I have experienced this myself.)

On the flip side, imagine this...

You enter a room full of strangers.

But they're not just any group of strangers. They happen to be all women. (And all are a little jet-lagged. 😁)

More than that... they are all women who've taken the same leap that YOU have: they are putting themselves out there. They are taking steps forward even if it feels scary.

And they are doing all this to achieve what you want to achieve: freedom in creating life on your terms.

Now the comments are more like:

  • "You are amazing. You can do this."

  • "Your story needs to be shared. There are people in this world who NEED your example."

  • "You just landed a huge client!? WOOHOO! Keep going!"

Quite the difference, right?

What I saw to be the biggest benefit of attending an in-person retreat? 

YOU FEEL SUPPORTED LIKE NEVER BEFORE.

You tap into a community of people who *get it*.

Gone are the prickly comments, the undertones of jealousy and the backhanded compliments...

And instead, you're greeted with SO much love and support... from people who you've just met.

I know it doesn't compute. Sounds crazy, even. It's definitely one of those "you gotta see it to believe it" kinda things.

But that, to me, was the biggest and best takeaway from the retreat. 

There was magic in the room at times... and only myself and the attendees will really know what I mean. ✨


My next retreat is live… and guess where we’re headed: BALI.

Grab all of the info to the Bali February 2019 retreat below!

No exaggeration: it’s going to be IN-CRE-DI-BLE.

I don’t want to spoil any of the secrets, so check out the link below for ALL the deets.

Elise Darma

About the Author:

Elise Darmanin believes that "travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer." That's why she makes beaches, coffee shops and co-working spaces her office by working remotely while growing Canupy Content. Canupy is a social media and copywriting agency for small to medium-sized businesses. The Canupy team helps brands grow through social media marketing, copywriting and content strategies that inspire audiences and drive sales.