This annual retreat is coming back for the first time since the global pandemic. After the last two difficult years of living through the pandemic and experiencing unthinkable loss, Twyler L. Jenkins and the team are back. The “I Am THAT WOMAN” retreat is back to help you restore, renew, and refocus. The attendees should expect an intimate, luxurious experience and exceptional amenities. Twyler encourages women to be aware, be present, and dig deep into themselves through learning and self-discovery. Twyler Jenkins has been the President and CEO of Strategic Event Solutions since 2001. She started the “I Am that WOMAN” retreat back in 2018.
How did the retreat idea come about?
For her 43rd birthday, she decided to have a private dinner and invited 43 women who had influenced, inspired, and significantly impacted her life. Her goal was to do a “check-in” with herself after being in business for 15 years; she was thinking about her next step. She invited her Mom, sisters, friends, and mentor, Mrs. Jacqueline Jackson, wife of Rev Jesse Jackson. The dinner was a cross-generational event where the ladies shared powerful stories; they cried, laughed, and learned. Mrs. Jackson noted the value of having these women in the room to create a powerful experience. One thing led to another, and the first retreat was held five years later.
Do you think work/life balance is realistic?
You must be mindful and aware of your current situation to create balance. Twyler starts her day by being mindful with yoga, meditation, and prayer. She is convinced that this practice sets her day off with the right intentions. Similarly, this is how the retreat starts every morning for the attendees. The retreat is designed to help you take a deep dive personally and professionally.
What came from the relationship building and retreats?
The benefits of the retreat are life-changing. Most of the attendees agree that the retreat changed the trajectory of their lives after the retreat. Twyler knows how precious life is and is mindful of the friends she has lost due to mental challenges, health challenges, addictions, being caregivers, etc. We all fall short at some point, but she reminds the ladies to be determined and keep going because it will be worth it. She has noted an increase in her faith and a renewed tenacity that she carries into her business. She has first-hand experience of what happens when you don’t make yourself a priority.
Describe the “I am THAT WOMAN” retreat…
The retreat aims to provide an intimate, luxurious experience in a warm climate with fantastic amenities. Twyler secured world-renowned speakers to pour into the women for the first half of the day. In the second part of the day, the ladies get a chance to enjoy the resort, the spa, and other exceptional amenities. Most attendees include ladies in the C-suite, Executives, and other high-achieving individuals, who usually do not take the time to recharge due to their busy schedules. She realizes the virtual connections are great, but the retreat has a more significant impact in person.
What do you want people to get out of the retreat?
The retreat is an excellent time for total wellness, self-healing, and personal and professional goals assessments. Twyler wants the ladies to get a mind, body, and spirit check-in. She hopes the ladies get a deeper understanding of who they are, find their divine purpose, embrace what they learn, and then move forward with that knowledge. She wants them to embrace who they are and where they are. She hopes they have a life-changing opportunity and get to their “NEXT.”
What has been the biggest challenge?
The biggest challenge has been getting sponsorships. It is typically hard to get sponsorships when the organization or event is in its beginning stages. Additionally, getting marketing opportunities is challenging as well. Twyler is grateful for the partnerships with the AARP, Encore (audio/visual), and the Chicago Defender. Funding continues to be challenging, but she hopes the increase in social media and new outlets will help spread the word.
Describe your village, mentors, and ladies of influence.
Twyler has a fantastic village and support system, which has had a tremendous impact on her life. Her eldest sister is her number one supporter and best friend mentor and helps her with the business and the retreat. Her 81-year-old Mom is a huge supporter and will attend the retreat again this year. She has an awesome prayer line family who gives inspiring praise reports on Fridays. This combination of support has been instrumental, which keeps her motivated and determined to face challenges and obstacles.
Registration is still open for the “I am THAT women retreat” being held on October 27 to 30th in the lovely Marco Island, FL. For more information, please check out www.iamthatwomenmovement.org