Resilience Retreat: Tools to Manage Stress, Conflict, and Mental Health – PEN Special Event Nov 17

11/17/2020 | 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

In today’s environment, all of us are facing increasing levels of stress, anxiety, and work- (and personal) related pressure.  In fact, some experts estimate that 25-40% of Americans are suffering increased mental health issues related to the pandemic, job loss and the economy, racial inequities and/or the recent social unrest, as well as a number of other current challenges.  But we are still expected to perform in our roles as leaders and professionals (and as family members and contributors to society).

Fortunately, there are proven methods and tools to help us all improve our resilience, manage our stress and work conflict, and improve our mental health and overall well-being.  They can be learned, practiced, and perfected.  And their impact can be felt in better health, better productivity, and overall better professional and personal effectiveness.

The Performance Excellence Network is pleased to host a special one-day online event this November 17 – a Resilience Retreat, focused on tools to manage stress, conflict, and mental health.  The retreat will run 8:00-4:00 CT, with plenty of breaks.

The day will begin with a keynote discussion, featuring Dr. Amit Sood, Executive Director of Resilient Options and former Professor of Medicine, Director of Mayo Mind Body Initiative at the Mayo Clinic.  Dr. Sood will explore the power of gratitude, having a mindful presence, kindness, and developing a resilient mindset.  With decades of research on these concepts and more than 70 peer-reviewed papers and several books to his name, Dr. Sood is considered one of the world’s leading experts on resilience and wellbeing.

After the keynote, the retreat will feature three morning workshops and three afternoon workshops, each facilitated by leading experts in their fields – you choose the morning and afternoon topic that would benefit you the most, building your own day of learning, exploring, and developing resilience competencies that you can immediately put into practice.

The retreat’s topics/speakers are as follows (with details below):

Morning Sessions (all 9:00-12:00 CT) Afternoon Sessions (all 1:00-4:00 CT)
How to Live a Drama-Free Life Incivility in a Virtual World: Latest Research and Top 10 Tips to Turn this Around
Why The Brain Follows – The Neuroscience of Leadership, Us vs. Them, and Stress Management Increase Your Resilience with Practical Brain-Based Tools and Strategies
Rekindle Healthy Habits: Create Your Personalized Stress Resilience Roadmap Self-Care in a New Season — for Business & for Life


The Retreat is Wednesday, November 17 from 8:00-4:00 CT online.  Investment is $325 for PEN members ($300/each for groups of 3-4 registering together, or $275/each for groups of 5+ registering together); $650 for non-members.

We all are facing extraordinary stress in today’s challenging world.  Come learn how to maintain your sanity, improve your health and wellbeing, and increase your professional effectiveness in these challenging times.  Register today!

Retreat Details

Morning workshop options (all 9:00-12:00 CT)

Option 1: How to Live a Drama-Free Life

Everyday we respond to frustration in one of three ways. Two of those reactions threaten our equanimity and physical health. The third leads us to a drama-free life.

In this ground-breaking workshop, you will discover compelling solutions to the universal challenges of managing conflict, demands and disappointments. At the end of this session, many have asked, “Why didn’t someone tell me this before?!”

  • Learn how to create the outcomes you desire and deserve, and eliminate negative energy from your emotional repertoire.
  • Recognize the subtle patterns that turn disagreement into a debilitating power struggle
  • Eliminate “drama-venting,” and its toxic impact on your physical and emotional health
  • Discover the conditions of connectedness–an indispensable source of energy at the cellular level!

About the Facilitator

Anna Maravelas, Psychologist Emeritus and President of Thera Rising International, is the author of “Creating a Drama-Free Workplace” (Career Press) and her work has been featured in numerous radio broadcasts and print media including Oprah Magazine, Forbes, Leadership Insights, and Harvard Management Update. Learn why The New York Times named her, “The best source on workplace irritability and tension,” and FedEx purchased 2,000 copies of her book!


Option 2: Why the Brain Follows – The Neuroscience of Leadership, Us vs. Them, and Stress Management

This workshop is a set of three separate concepts, each about one hour in duration: the Neuroscience of Leadership, Us vs. Them, and Stress Management.  In the Neuroscience of Leadership, explore how leaders decide to lead and why followers decide to follow – how the brain structures that are involved in human emotions and decisions actually work, and how leaders can practice empathy and compassion.  In the Neuroscience Us vs. Them, learn more about how our hardwired minds are trained to categorize people based on race, gender, party affiliation, socioeconomic status, age, profession, work responsibility, or something we don’t even notice – and how this unconscious bias can be overcome to create more harmony.  In the Neuroscience of Stress Management, explore how the brain responds and even overreacts to fear, and explore scientifically proven ways of managing stress, increasing control and predictability.  For more information on each of the three modules, visit here.

About the Facilitator

Dr. Terry Wu received his Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Vanderbilt University. He has a 30-year career in Neuroscience. He started his own marketing firm over 18 years ago, giving his clients a strong competitive edge by applying insights from Neuroscience and Psychology. His combined knowledge and experience in both Neuroscience and business led him to conduct research on the Neuroscience of Leadership in decision making. He found that many Neuroscience-based sales and marketing principles can be applied to leadership. He often speaks about the science that guides how leaders should lead and why people follow.

In May, 2019, Dr. Wu gave a 17-minute TED Talk on Neuromarketing. His talk ( has been extremely well received by Neuromarketing experts as well as the general public. His talk has been raising awareness about this new, scientific approach to marketing.


Option 3: Rekindle Healthy Habits: Create Your Personalized Stress Resilience Roadmap

Create a personalized roadmap to help you reduce stress, rekindle healthy habits, and become more energized and focused. This engaging, experience-based workshop will introduce you to new stress resiliency tools that will help you to reset your nervous system and retrain your brain to respond better to life’s stressors. You’ll leave feeling refreshed, with a clear and practical, personalized stress resilience roadmap, that you can implement immediately — and finally stick with.

Learning Objectives:

  • How to recognize the stress response in yourself and others and how it impacts your wellbeing.
  • How stress makes us stronger.
  • How to find a mindfulness practice that works for you.
  • How to successfully implement small, daily habits that have a huge impact on your wellbeing.

About the Facilitator

Brianna Harrington is the founder of Seek United, an organization dedicated to helping people thrive. She is a passionate keynote speaker, consultant, and workshop host. Brianna’s quest to live better came after a major concussion and subsequent fight against depression and workaholism. Using personal stories and the latest research she teaches practical insights on how to successfully implement stress resiliency tools that positively impact your health, happiness, and productivity — at work and home.


Afternoon workshop options (all 1:00-4:00 CT)

Option 1: Incivility in a Virtual World: Latest Research and Top 10 Tips to Turn this Around

Last week I was talking with an organizational client who was lamenting having difficulty dealing with some behaviors in our new virtual world. Specifically, she was most concerned with the fact that some team members were engaging in passive-aggressive emails, rolling of eyes at remote video meetings, and being very condescending. While she acknowledged these were behaviors that occurred before COVID19, she noted that the behaviors were now much more pronounced, albeit subtle, than ever.

Whether or not incivility has worsened since quarantine is not the point here. What is important is that that leaders need a vehicle for addressing these virtually as this is our “new normal.” Because this “new normal” is likely temporary, there’s a tendency to stick one’s head in the sand and hope the incivility goes away. Hint: It doesn’t!

Objectives – at the end of this workshop, you should be able to:

  • Explain the latest research on toxic behaviors and its impact on performance in a virtual world.
  • Identify at least 5 strategies to address incivility in the workplace.
  • Describe 3 things you will teach team members about toxic behaviors in the remote world.
  • Build teams in at least 4 new and creative ways to impact team and organizational performance.

About the Facilitator

A 2005 Fulbright Scholar in organization development, Dr. Mitch Kusy is a professor in the PhD Program at Antioch University—an international program of key leaders returning to school for their PhD. Mitch has consulted nationally and internationally and has been a keynote speaker with hundreds of organizations—helping create work cultures of respectful engagement impacting individual, team, and bottom-line performance. He previously headed organization development at HealthPartners, as well as leadership development at American Express. His heavily researched evidence-based practices are part of all his workshops and are incorporated into his latest book, Why I Don’t Work Here Anymore: A Leader’s Guide to Offset the Financial and Emotional Costs of Toxic Employees. Mitch has also authored five other best-selling business books and is the proud recipient of the Minnesota Organization Development Practitioner of the Year Award. He resides in Minneapolis and Palm Springs.


Option 2: Increase Your Resilience with Practical Brain-Based Tools and Strategies

Feeling stressed? Having a hard time focusing? Feeling like it is more difficult to be your best self consistently at work and home? You are not alone – nearly 7 in 10 employees indicate these last several months are the most stressful time of their entire professional career. Neuroscience research is making it clear that change, especially undesired change, fear, and uncertainty can tax the brain’s resources, and reduce your ability to stay focused and sustain high levels of positive engagement.

Come to this cutting edge interactive workshop and discover how you can use new, innovative brain-based tools and strategies to bring your best self back online, while strengthening your resilience.

  • Learn about your BrainStates and how to effectively manage your state in the moment.
  • Understand the brain dynamics of fear and how it undermines your well-being, productivity, and engagement.
  • Take the BrainStates Awareness™ Profile and gain insight into your own BrainState tendencies and how to increase your capacity in seven neuroscience-based dimensions underlying BrainStates Management.
  • Increase your resilience by learning and practicing brain-based tools and strategies that you can immediately apply.

About the Facilitator

Shannon Murphy Robinson is a highly sought after keynote speaker, trainer, and consultant. She is CEO of BrainSkills@Work, a consultancy that applies neuroscience to help individuals be more inclusive, culturally agile, and more effective leaders.  Shannon brings a wealth of expertise in diversity and inclusion, intercultural management and leadership development. She is co-author of book Neuroscience of Inclusion: New Skills for New Times, and the BrainStates Awareness Profile. She has successfully created and implemented large scale training initiatives (20,000+ employees) to create inclusive high performing work cultures with companies like Deloitte, CHRISTUS Health, Medtronic, Deluxe, Barr Engineering, University of Michigan, Mayo Clinic, Boston Scientific, and others. She has an M.A. in Intercultural Management and Leadership Development. In May 2012, she achieved Advanced Certification as a NeuroBusiness coach at Harvard with Dr. Srini Pillay. She is on the faculty of the Intercultural Communication Institute where she teaches neuroscience of inclusion, and was adjunct professor at the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business Executive Education. Her infectious style and warm candor have made her a favorite keynote speaker, presenter and trainer.


Option 3: Self-Care in a New Season — for Business & for Life

Given today’s stressors, we all need to take care of ourselves and our teams — to find ways to promote wellness in mind, heart, and health.  Terri Mattson, founder of Beginning Today Lifestyle Wellness will explore three key concepts that reduce stress, promote wellness and resilience:

  • Setting Goals-Honoring Priorities – As Steve Jobs has said “Passion fuels the rocket, but vision – a big dream – points the rocket to its ultimate destination. Dream Bigger!” Terri will explore the power of setting – and remaining focused – on priorities and the impact it has to keep us grounded, focused, and resilient.
  • Say no to excuses and live with purpose – Terri will share what best fuels your body and how to put the fun in activity.
  • Mindset effects everything – What you think, you will become. Terri will explore the power of purpose, sharing how we all can become more mindful as leaders and individuals.

For each area, Terri will share tools and help us each practice ways to take care of ourselves.  Only you can decide what’s possible for yourself and for your life. The truth is that you are who and what you tell yourself you are, not what anyone else tells you.

About the Facilitator

Terri Mattson has been in the coaching field for over 14 years and founded Beginning Today Lifestyle Wellness in 2016. She is a Wellness Consultant for corporations and senior communities, is a Certified Integrative Wellness & Life Coach working holistically with mental, physical, emotional and spiritual wellness and is a health and wellness personal coach, mentor and author. After leading members to successful weight loss with a well-known company she founded her own business working with companies and individuals championing them in the journey towards best self.

She believes today is the first day of the rest of your life. As a motivational speaker, she is engaging and educates, inspires and motivates you to make big changes one small step at a time. Standing out as a company that cares is critical to keeping your top employees. Having a wellness program onsite engages, motivates and educates your team, transforming your work place to a work family. Terri is passionate about helping others be the best they can personally be beginning today. She lives with her husband and is the mother of four now grown boys.

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