The polar vortex in 2019 landed Sara in a dark place. Although she had lived through many cold seasons before, this one brought a twinge more than any other; this winter stifled her business. It stifled her creativity and emotions in a way she had never experienced, in business or in her personal life. She felt isolated, she felt frustrated with her business, and she felt really cold.
As a private jeweler running a luxury custom jewelry business, Sara has encountered many ups and downs over the years. When it comes to creating the stunning pieces her clients cherish for a lifetime, her creativity is a key component to her work.
Sara felt like she was on an island with her struggles. That is, until she met Glen Dall.
It’s not that Sara was ever actually alone. She has plenty of supportive friends, many of whom are business leaders and CEOs themselves. But nothing truly changed over the hours-long happy hours except more talking over more cocktails.
Every day she was pushing a heavy boulder uphill, and every night it was slowly rolling back on her. Instead of more fight, she yearned for flight. She wanted to bail. She wanted to find peace and wellness.
When Sara found the support of Glen as her dynamic business coach, the boulder was lifted out of her path so that she could continue climbing up the mountain on a different, more scenic route.
After helping Sara reach the summer of her business, Glen realized business leaders needed a way to come together so that no one had to go through what Sara went through alone again. The concept was born for a retreat. Sara knew immediately that she would be the first to sign up.
“It’s important for us to step away from ourselves and our businesses in order to not feel disrupted or distracted when trying to do some real work internally and think about processes that are important, not only for business, but thinking: what helps me relax? What helps me resolve problems? What helps me work through issues?”
Costa Rica is a warm country. The weather is balmy, the people friendly and inviting. Sara went into the Scale Your Mindset retreat looking for a challenge, needing relaxation and hoping to learn something new.
As a world traveler, Sara experiences growth when she goes on holidays with family, friends, or on her own. Yet even on vacation in a tropical paradise, removed from the confines of business as usual, there are distractions. There is planning. There is traveling from one place to the next, the unending velocity of work draining precious mental energy.
From the moment she stepped foot at Imiloa Institute, everything was planned. With every moment laid out effortlessly in front of her, there was minimal exertion required for anything other than the crucial work at hand; not for planning the next meal, keeping track of a crowded calendar, or even determining what to wear.
Sara woke up with the sunrise to a stunning view of the vast Savegre hills without any distractions from a cell phone, slid into flip flops, and walked down to breakfast where she sipped coffee with like-minded people among toucans and butterflies while having honest conversations about life. The struggles and the joys.
Embarking on this journey in a new place with a group of people she'd never met before, who all shared common goals and carried the same passion for their respective businesses, seemed to result in a certain openness she hadn't expected.
Without preconceptions about who she was, Sara was able to show up as the version of herself that she knows the best; the shorts-and-flip-flops, all-encompassing version. Sharing the experience with people from all different walks of life and business backgrounds allowed for Sara’s mind to be expanded in a new way.
The combination of the three different coaches holistically blending spiritual and targeted emotional coaching with business coaching helped Sara to work through areas where she had been profoundly stuck. Facing and releasing these roadblocks slowly but surely helped her to uncover a new layer of authenticity.
These diverse workshops interspersed with liberating activities within the safe space created by Apex North forged a path to work on these fundamentals, linking it all back to how she runs her custom jewelry business. The tandem effort brought everything together through the coaches' own experiences; not just as professional coaches, but as dynamic, compassionate business leaders and CEOs themselves.
The “aha” moment for Sara came on day five.
Through a video journal she started on day one, Sara confides to her close friend on the other end of the camera that she doesn’t know exactly what she is going to experience, but that whatever is to come, she’s “all in.”
By day five, the worry evaporated from her now-tanned face, the results are palpable as she tries to put into words the life changing experience she walked through; that she was leaving Costa Rica with new tools, new lifelong friendships and a lot of growth. She had unlocked something powerful inside of herself that she hadn’t even fully known was there before.
As a city dweller, she had already recognized that her days were noticeably void of quality connection to nature, but it wasn’t until she was quite literally face-to-face with some of the most raw natural abundance earth has to offer that she realized how much it was affecting her.
Suddenly her mind was teeming with ideas again, creative inspiration for pairing gemstones and setting designs was overflowing. It wasn’t that she hadn’t been creating beautiful pieces all along—she was just realizing how much she had been exhausting herself, tugging relentlessly at a creative flow that was zapped because she wasn’t refilling the well.
She didn’t have to be in Costa Rica to reignite that flame. She needed to make connection to nature a priority for her professional inspiration and her personal well being.
More than anything, those five days in the jungle gave Sara the time and space she needed to tap back into the reason she started all of this in the first place—the devotion she has for her clients and her dedication to create beautiful, wearable art for them. She’d located an unending source of connection to her purpose that she can return to, again and again. Just as she can again return to Costa Rica and to the dear community that was born there.
“To take the time to work on myself and to scale my mindset was 100%, 125%, and then some worth it.”
Sara attributes the effects of those transformative days to Glen Dall; a coach, a listener and a friend Sara leans on: “He always encourages me from the bottom of his heart to reach out to him. Obviously within reason.. not in the middle of the night. But even then, if it was a necessity and I needed him, I know he would answer the call. If I can do for one person what Glen has done for me, it’s a domino affect. It helps people become the best version of themselves.”