Self-Care For Entrepreneurs // Retreat Yourself

By Kate Williams

As many of you know, my word for 2016 is 'nourish' and I wholeheartedly believe that taking care of yourself is a sure bet for entrepreneurial success. When you are stressed, exhausted, overwhelmed, overworked and stretched too thin, your body, mind and biz will suffer. So while it's not always possible to book a holiday or escape to the spa, this new business is just the solution you need. When I first heard about Kate's business, Retreat Yourself, I immediately knew I had to share with my Blog Society family....enjoy below and make sure to check out our giveaway to one lucky reader! (I've been lucky enough to see this box first hand and can say without a doubt it was jam packed with the most exquisite goodies I've ever seen!) x Jaclyn

Hi everyone, I'm so happy to be sharing my own story with you guys as there is no better time to talk about self-care than at the start of a new month and while the seasons are changing and I'm so happy tell you a little about my journey launching my brand new business (yes it's been a roller coaster!) The Retreat Yourself Box is Australia’s first seasonal health & wellness subscription box. It’s taken a spin off the usual subscription boxes we see on the market and created an entire experience, to really help you get the most out of your health and life. 

When you subscribe to Retreat Yourself, you receive a retreat on your doorstep at the start of each season (4 boxes per year) to help you get grounded, healthy & ready to transition to the season ahead.

The box is packed full of 10-15 sample and full sized health and wellness products worth well over $100. It also contains the RY Wellness Guide, which is a magazine style booklet containing loads of healthy recipes, stretches and yoga poses, lifestyle articles and beauty tips and tricks from health gurus across the globe. The box is all tied together with the exclusive Retreat Yourself day plan, which explains how to create your own health retreat at home, using the products and guide featured within the box. It’s essentially a health retreat in a box!

Having launched this Summer and selling out of the Summer Box twice, the Retreat Yourself Box has hit the ground running.

So why Retreat Yourself? And where did this idea begin?
Retreat Yourself was born just under a year ago. I was living in Melbourne at the time and had my heart set on starting an online coaching program for women which involved all areas of health – mind, body and soul, and learning to love #1. I was in the middle of doing an online business course called B-School, had just finished my personal training certificate, had enrolled at Beautiful You coaching academy to become a qualified life coach, and was going to combine them with my certificate in Holistic Nutrition that I’d gained a couple of years prior. I’d started my website and Instagram page, and was (and still am) a part of many different small business groups for female entrepreneurs who were starting or working in heart-centred business. I found that even though I was surrounded by so much support, I kept coming up against dead ends. 

Starting an online coaching program just wasn’t flowing for me, and I really wanted to reach people on a much BIGGER scale. Not only did I want to help women who were seeking my services, but also women who would never have ever considered hiring a coach to help them with their health and happiness. I was actually seeing a life coach at the time and I’d often have people say to me “but why Kate? You’re good at life!”. People just didn’t get it. The stigma that only people who were struggling with life should have a coach was surrounding me, and I felt as though it was holding me back and keeping me dead in my tracks. 

A few years ago I had a friend who had been receiving Bella Box. I thought it was such a great idea! Starting a health food box was then stuck in my head, but I was about to head off traveling again and was unsure whether I’d return. The idea sat dormant at the back of my mind for the next few years. In March last year whilst I was sitting at my desk doing B-School work on how to grow my coaching business, my mind started to wander. What if I could create a subscription style box that included the type of information that you’d get from a coach? That included products that ANY health conscious person would be interested in, and also encouraged self-care and looking after whole health? I literally sat there that day and the whole idea just came surging out. I knew what it was going to look like, smell like, I knew the name. I knew exactly what it was. It all made sense! And the best part? That I would be able to reach SO many people with this idea. It was a no-brainer. So that day I created a business plan, I started searching for a designer and I got planning. I haven’t stopped since! 

Helping women with their health wasn’t the only reason I started the Retreat Yourself Box. There are MANY angles as to why it began. I’ve never been a big believer in societies prescribed plan - having left New Zealand to explore new places when I was 20 years old; I studied the world instead of going to university. I didn’t believe in spending my youth studying something I may never use. I knew from a very young age that I wanted to help people, but wasn’t sure how this looked. All I knew was that the more I explored and discovered the world, others and myself, the more I’d learn where I wanted to be.

During the last 10 years of travel I have experienced some weird and wonderful things. I’ve spent time volunteering in Nepal, Zambia and Melbourne. I’ve done 7 ski seasons. I’ve backpacked through India, Mexico, America, Sri Lanka, South East Asia. I’ve lived in multiple cities and towns across Australia and Canada, and have spent some time living in Japan. My life has been anything BUT stationary. Even as the beginning stages of Retreat Yourself were implemented, I backpacked across Thailand and Vietnam, having email conversations with my designer as I trotted between different locations. People would often say to me, “I wish I had a life like yours”, and my answer was always – you can! The only thing between you and living your best life is YOU.

One thing that lingered over my head during many years of travel was the thought of “am I doing what I ‘should’ be doing?” “What if I don’t ‘succeed’ at life?” “What if I become a ‘nobody’?”. This pressure loomed over me like a dark cloud for many years during my mid 20’s, which lead me to Melbourne where I was going to get a ‘proper’ job. I somehow landed upon a good role in the corporate world as a Contractor Manager, where I was managing around 200-300 corporate contractors across 18 companies. My strengths certainly lay in the relationship building side of things, with coffee drinking and lunching becoming the usual. Besides the fact that it was great to escape the office, I really liked getting to know about my contractors lives – both at work, and at home. What I learnt during this time is that SO many people aren’t doing what they want to be doing in life. So many people are stuck in their usual comforts and are so paralysed by fear of the unknown that they stay stuck in something that may not be serving their highest good. When I’d chat to my contractors and delve a little deeper than the usual chit chat, they’d tell me that they wished they could start their own businesses, or spend their time creating things, or traveling, or doing what the loved. So why weren’t they doing these things? I’d often ponder to myself. It made me realise how difficult it can be for some people to follow their dreams. Lack of confidence and just general fear would keep them at a stand-still. This to me, was absolutely absurd. So when Retreat Yourself came up, I thought YES! This is how I can help those people who have taken the plunge to start their own small businesses to get their product out into the world and into the hand of potential customers. A HUGE focus of the Retreat Yourself Box is on small Australian brands and people who align with the ethics of Retreat Yourself. It makes my heart sing to know that I can be helping people from all angles.

I really do pour my heart and soul into this baby. I have a vision of impacting the lives of women across Australia, and hopefully one day – across the world. My vision for Retreat Yourself is huge and I will continue to work on it until women learn how to love themselves and put their health and happiness first. Why? Because at the end of the day, YOU are the only obstacle in the way of living your most fabulous life. When you learn to love and care for yourself, the world is yours.

Kate and I are proud to team up and be giving a way to Retreat Yourself box to one lucky and deserving winner. To enter all you need to do is tell is leave us a quick comment below and share your favourite means of self-care (ie. travel, massage, exercise, mediation - get creative!). PLEASE make sure you leave your contact email so we can get in touch with you! One winner will be drawn at random and announced via social media on Saturday 9 April. Entries close 7 April at midnight (EST). Good luck!

Kate Williams, Retreat Yourself  (*You can find Kate on Facebook, Instagram)