CRAZY BUSY ESCAPE 3-6th Sept 2020

Find freedom from your busy mind

Prioritise your health and fitness

Lift your leadership game

Take back control of your life!

Venue: Stony Bay Lodge Tora (only 2 hours drive from Wellington)

Starts: Thursday 3rd Sept 7 pm

Ends: Sunday 6th Sept 11 am

Hosted by Kerene Strochnetter (Mindful at Work) and Shirley McLeod (Yoga with Me)


Only $1,250 

$300 deposit to secure your place.

Only a few places left!

Strictly limited to 13 people! Bring a couple of friends…

 Long weekend includes:

  • 3 night’s accommodation and all meals (healthy, delicious primarily plant-based food!) at the stunning coastal lodge in Tora, just 2-hours from Wellington
  • Part one of ‘Crazy Busy My Off Switch’ programme. Make mindfulness a part of your daily routine without needing to meditate for hours! (details below)
  • Part two is self-directed using the mindful at work app
  • Personally signed copy of Kerene’s new book ‘Crazy Busy’ which supports the programme
  • Regular yoga and yoga Nidra practices – up to you what you join in with (Shirley’s a genius at accommodating all levels)
  • Shirley’s Yoga Deck cards to  continue your practice at home
  • Guided walks, with epic coastal views
  • Time chilling out, reading – or even swimming if you want!
  • BYO alcohol (this is not a dry escape unless you want to spend the weekend without?)
  • Quiet time! What we all need but rarely get – some space for complete silence.

In our experience, it’s easy to want to make changes but hard to keep yourself accountable. You’ll have the option to work 1:1 with Kerene and Shirley after the escape, or to join a group program to stay on track!

Is this escape for you?

  • Looking for a weekend escape to get some fresh air and to re-energise? 
  • Heard the hype about mindfulness but not sure if it’s for you?
  • Know you need to meditate but don’t like the woo-woo?
  • Feeling stressed and overwhelmed?
  • Looking for ways to improve your performance at work?
  • Love yoga or ready to give it a go?
  • Want a four-day break with great food and excellent company?
  • Take back control of your life, but unsure where to start?
  • Want to be more present and connected in your life? 
  • Relationship trouble? (just kidding, we don’t cover that!) 

What’s it like?

Yes, our past escapes have been women-only, but we’ve opened up our latest one to men, because, well, it’s only fair…

Can you see yourself in this picture?

We’d love to have you join us.

More about our Crazy Busy Escape (the deets!)

Stony Bay Lodge is purpose-built so you can relax and unwind in comfort. The moment you step inside, you’ll feel at home.

All meals included. Enjoy excellent healthy food. BYO wine if you want, or not…it’s up to you!

There’s a large outdoor entertainment area and accommodation for 14 guests.

Put your feet up and relax. Walk along the beach, or take a stroll over the hills.

The air is clearer, fresher, and Stony Bay Lodge has spectacular sea views.

You’ll have the opportunity to get out and about on gentle mindful walks. Enjoy the physical beauty of the environment without hiking for hours or needing any special gear (perhaps a pair of comfortable walking shoes for short walks or stay on the couch and relax if you like…).

Bring a raincoat if you’re an adventurous, outdoorsy type. All walks are optional.

Great company. You’ll be surrounded by like-minded people in a quiet energising place, so you can refuel, have fun, and share experiences while learning how to take back control of your life with yoga and mindfulness.

Escape from the hustle and bustle and distractions. Have some well-deserved ME TIME in a relaxing environment!

Kerene Strochnetter Mindful at Work

About Kerene

Kerene Strochnetter | Author | Mindfulness Trainer | Coach | Speaker

Kerene’s background as a Registered Nurse, Academic Leader, Principal Career Management Consultant, Coach and Mindfulness Teacher perfectly positions her to show you how you can use your mind differently, to create the kind of life that has you jumping out of bed every morning.

When you begin a mindfulness practice it’s vital to understand that you’re competing with your brain’s old hardwiring (your Default Mode). Kerene’s cutting-edge brain-based approach (informed by the neuroscience of mindfulness) shows you how to establish a regular mindfulness practice.

Being more ‘mindfully’ aware builds new wiring and changes your life.

Kerene is the Managing Director of Mindful at Work Ltd. She works with smart, successful professional people, leaders and businesses across NZ  – people who want to take off their ‘busy badge of honour’ and re-engage with their lives and careers on a different level.

Kerene’s focus in on peak performance, engagement and maximising health and well-being. She’s especially interested in aligning values with behaviours because that’s a real game-changer.

Kerene has two adult sons and two grandsons. She practises yoga at Empower Studio and has meditated daily (well, almost daily) for 10 years.

She began meditating after her life went belly-up (she’ll tell you about it!). She decided to put herself first!

If you had of told back then that she’d be teaching people to meditate today, she’d never have believed you. It was the science that got her hooked, and once she experienced changes in herself, she got serious about learning more and sharing it with other ‘crazy busy’ people.

Kerene can be found in her apartment most days, tapping away on her laptop, thinking up new ways to change the world (and herself), or in cafés with a good coffee, or walking along the waterfront in her fabulous city of Wellington.

She has a serious shoe addiction which she is not ashamed of and loves a good pinot noir.

Find out more about Kerene: Ask Kerene about the programme Cell: 0276244880

Shirley McLeod Yoga with Me

About Shirley

Shirley McLeod is Wellington-based project manager, certified yoga & mindfulness teacher, and mum of two.  Shirley is the founder of Yoga With Me, New Zealand’s largest teacher-led social media community for the encouragement of yoga, meditation and well-being.

In 2016 she developed and self-published the Yoga Deck – a set of 41 instructional yoga pose cards and 16 sample sequences – to share the practice of yoga with more people across Aotearoa and the world.  In 2019 she filmed a set of yoga videos to complement the Yoga Deck cards. Shirley collaborated with Jase Te Patu in 2019 to develop the Te Reo Yoga Cards, which were a finalist in the Ngā Tohu Reo Maori awards. 

Shirley was runner-up New Zealand Project Manager of the Year in 2013 and a finalist in the NZ Exercise Industry Awards – Body/Mind Teacher of the year 2016. 

She is currently an ambassador for Lululemon Wellington. Shirley works full time as a corporate programme manager in wellington, and manages her yoga and mindfulness endeavours around family and work commitments 

Find out more about Shirley: Ask Shirley about the programme

Email: Cell: 0272712201

What’s Yoga Nidra?

It is said that 20 minutes of Yoga Nidra is equivalent to 2 hours sleep! Shirley will take you through 45 minutes of deep relaxation to reduce stress and tension in the body, and help promote better sleep. 
iRest Yoga Nidra is an evidence-based deep relation and mindfulness practice that integrates Eastern yogic philosophies with Western medical science. It uses a person’s own senses, breath, body experiences, emotions, cognition and images to access a deeper state of awareness. It is the art of non-doing. The art of just Being. This is a sweat-free zone – You might even fall asleep.

Part one ‘Crazy Busy – My Off Switch’ Program covers:

  • What mindfulness is and the impact of being too busy and uncontrolled mind-wandering on your physical, mental and emotional health
  • The neuroscience of how mindfulness works and the benefits for your mental, emotional and physical health and well-being
  • How mindfulness counterbalances mind-wandering and creates the space for you to stay present, focused and resilient
  • Learn a range of simple formal and informal practices to take mindfulness out of the closet and into your life
  • Design your personal mindfulness plan and establish the guidelines to set a clear intention to grow yourself as a person and a leader
  • Understand the long term impact of chronic stress and how mindfulness counterbalances stress and builds resilience
  • How mindfulness reduces cognitive bias (we all have blind spots) and helps you be more flexible and innovative and find easier solutions
  • The science of mindfulness – research to debunk common myths and misconceptions
  • How to start practising mindfulness without sitting for hours, or running away to join a monastery!
Watch Video

What people say about this weekend away!

The retreat could not have come at a better time… the goal was to deepen my understanding of meditation, but little did I know it was going to change my perspective on lots of things!

Since the retreat I haven’t missed a day of meditation, life is happier, I’m more present, and relationships are deeper.

When times get ‘challenging’ there’s a tool belt I can utilise, and to always come back to meditation for clarity.

At a particularly busy time of the year, I’m a cool cucumber with so much creativity and focus… amazing!

I cannot thank you enough.

Christine Westbury

Founder Clean Mixes

The new learning in such a beautiful and peaceful location and the great group of women who all clicked so well. The compassion and acceptance of every individual in a safe space. I can do yoga! I loved every minute and am enjoying practising new skills and mindset.

I thought it was a great mix of mindfulness and yoga. I felt so relaxed the whole weekend and learnt so much! Was also good to know that having lots of thoughts is normal and I now have great to have strategies to deal with it.

Beautiful location and great accommodation. Hosts were all fantastic – Knowledgeable, engaging, fun and honest. I enjoyed learning new strategies to cope with all sorts of challenges in daily life. Including ways to be more mindful and how to focus.

There was loads of down time to process and do my own thing. Lots of good discussion and practice.

I’m noticing a change in me, calmer, listening more – not too busy or opinionated – and it seems a lot easier for me to just let my opinions go and just listen.

I’m hearing a lot more! Feeling more at peace by not getting involved in everything. I find I’m really present in my work.

I don’t find it hard to concentrate and am now making the effort to finish the current portion of the task and then lookup. I don’t check my phone much at all and can easily ignore it for long periods.

Thanks and will continue practising.

Julie McLeod

Director, Obertech Group Companies

Amazing location, great group of women, mindfulness, education and yoga…

Rachel McAuley

I loved the mindfulness workshops yoga and sisterhood. The food was amazing too.

Clare Whitworth

The venue added magic to everything – it made switching off a breeze, and deepened my experience of mindfulness learning and practice. Nature, mindfulness and movement – a winning combination in my books!

Valentina Vassiliadis

The pace, camaraderie, program, rest, food!

Hinemoa Shingleton

It was fun, neat people and really made you think!

Join Kerene Strochnetter and Shirley McLeod for a weekend away – chillaxing and learning how to bring mindfulness and yoga into your life, while eating good food, getting fresh air. 

Are you’re juggling a million things at once and stressed about meeting multiple deadlines? Or are you completely in the – ‘right here, right now’ – living mindfully and paying attention to the present moment?

The modern world demands more and more from us. Do you feel guilty about putting yourself first and taking time out, even though you know you must look after yourself before you can give to others? Do you try to fit in a bit of exercise and self-care on the side when everything else is done? No wonder we burnout! Stress is a common side-effect of combining a busy professional life with everything else.

Over time chronic stress changes the way you think (more negative, self-critical and problem-focused) until eventually you get sick, feel unhappy, and both you and your personal relationships suffer. And constant change and uncertainty in the workplace often compete with personal goals. You can’t think well under pressure, and you’re unlikely to show up as the best version of ‘you’ either at work or at home.

It’s common to try a variety of ways to numb ourselves so we can cope. Perhaps you self-medicate (drink too much alcohol) to take the edge off feeling stressed, or waste endless hours on Netflix, lost on social media, or watching mindless TV? It seems to work (up to a point) but do you really want to live a numb life?

Wouldn’t you rather feel energised and excited about your life, engaged fully at work and more connected to the people who matter?

We all know you can’t change the world or other people, so what can you do? You can change yourself!

Learn how to build inner resilience for whatever life throws at you.  Success (whatever that means for you) happens when your mind works for you, not against you!

This package is not associated with the Tora Wellness Retreats run in August by the Tora Coastal Walk.

Anonymous participant feedback about 'My Off Switch'

• Thank you for a wonderful course – I have totally embraced it. • I really enjoyed the course and got what I was looking for out of it. • The course has helped me to find that space for myself and put me on track to achieve my personal leadership plan. • Really great course, thanks so much! • I would really recommend this programme. Kerene really knows her stuff and is a great presenter. I have felt calmer since starting the programme and certain things have become much more apparent to me, especially how I am occurring to others – wearing my busy badge of honour and not being fully present. • I think mindfulness is a very important strategy for people to learn and apply both personally and professionally. I would recommend this course to anyone! • Was incredibly valuable. Great program, I have already presented this to my wider team. • Overall the course is great and has had huge benefits to my personal life as well. • I loved the programme – it felt like a real privilege to take part and I learnt a lot. I’d thoroughly recommend it to anyone. While I certainly haven’t ‘nailed’ practising mindfulness, I genuinely feel an impact on my level of calmness, the choices I make and how I react to things. • Love it. Worked for me thank you. • I found the programme fantastic. • Kerene is an incredible facilitator – she never missed a beat. I could not recommend her more highly. • Kerene was never judgmental or demanding and understood the workloads we were dealing with. I would highly recommend her courses to others and would happily take another with Kerene as a facilitator. • This has been a most enjoyable learning experience and an asset to my daily living. Love it thank you. • Kerene was fantastic! The course has encouraged both me and my wife to participate in other meditation classes. Well done and thanks! • I can once again provide very creative ideas to solve complex problems. I can find things easily again.