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Blue Ridge Retreat for Genetic Counselors 2020 - registration now open!

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So many of us are stretched thin each day.

Whether we are content with our careers or are wishing for something to change, there are Things That Have To Be Done that distract us from making changes that would benefit us and everyone around us. Jobs to show up for, dinners to cook, and relationships to maintain – whether close or distant. Finding the time to shut off our computers and put our phones down - and to think about the future we want to create - can be impossibly difficult with all we juggle.

When I left a secure job at a reliable institution to start a solo specialty practice, I was not sure what the future would hold. It was an idea I had contemplated for two years before I made the leap. The planning and learning it took to be able to set off down an unusual path was spread out over months and years. It had to be done during the tiny bits of freedom I could grab between working a job and caring for a home and a growing family.

I continued showing up for my daily work, trying to bring my best to the team I worked with but continuing to feel like something was off. I had worked so hard to become a Certified Genetic Counselor, yet here I was battling discontent and negativity. I knew I could do good work, fulfilling work even, yet my best qualities and skills had been lost somewhere. The Sunday night dread was terrible. 

I remember thinking, I NEED MORE SPACE TO FIGURE ALL OF THIS OUT. More information would not help me take the next step. I needed to get my head in the right place, find the resolve to make the leap, and do it.

What I needed was dedicated time to work through the internal dialogue and get clear on my needs and goals; I needed to turn off autopilot mode. I now know after having other GCs reach out to me that the struggle I was going through silently was the same struggle others are going through right now.

So I reached out to Orchid Story founder Rachel Nusbaum and asked her to create with me an opportunity that I wish had been available back then. 

The Blue Ridge Retreat for Genetic Counselors will be a chance for you to come together with a small group of other genetic counselors, to work individually, together. To escape from your everyday. To reconnect with your purpose.

Perhaps you feel like there is something you are meant to be doing with your days but have not found your way there yet. Maybe you have a destination in mind, but haven’t had a chance to sketch out the steps you need to take to get there. Perhaps you have considered going back to school for another degree, or are hanging on to a job you don’t love, to push through a few years until you can retire and escape it all.

Rachel is a genetic counselor who also has set off on an unusual path, pursuing a passion to help others find meaning in their life stories by reflecting and writing about them. She and I have created a retreat experience that will allow you to capture time for yourself in a beautiful green space to explore the questions you find yourself asking yourself. 

We have designed the retreat specifically for genetic counselors, with a balance of activities that will challenge you to identify your unique skills and interests while still having space and time to rest and breathe. Although Rachel and I are co-leaders, we’ve been through growth journeys of our own and will be involved throughout the retreat, challenging you and providing encouragement as you move through the activities and experiences we have created for you.

Look ahead to May 2020 and mark your calendars for a weekend that can set you on the path to a future you create.

Here’s the link to request more detailed information: Request More Information

and here’s the link to hold your spot: Reserve My Spot

We wanted this retreat to be small enough for group discussion time, so we have only ten spots available. Is one of those spots for you? Don’t wait! Start creating your future with a time out from everyday life in the Blue Ridge Mountains. 

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We are looking forward to having you join us!

-Brianne Kirkpatrick and Rachel Nusbaum



Podcasts for the Genetic Counselor audience

Podcasts for the Genetic Counselor audience

I don’t know about you, but I love a good podcast! It gives me something to listen to in the car when driving into the city for an appointment, while out for a neighborhood stroll with my youngest, or folding my family of five’s never-ending laundry piles. This is a reason I am PUMPED that there are now FIVE podcasts in genetic counseling world that can be added to my list! Call me biased since I’ve had the great fortune to be a guest on three of them, but these recordings allow a window into the unique aspects of the work of genetic counselors. Click below to find out more about the topics and guests who have been a part of these podcasts!