On April 22-24, 2022, the CLA Real Property Law Section will be hosting its first annual Real Property Health & Wellness Retreat at the fabulous Ritz Carlton, Lake Tahoe. We are excited that this will be the first event for our section to be focused primarily on wellness MCLE seminars and activities over substantive property law content. When Elizabeth Blair and I brainstormed this event, our goal was to break away from the typical tedious MCLE conference where attendees would be sitting in a room all day without much opportunity to network or get up and move. We wanted to appeal to a broader, younger audience, and shift the dynamic of what a legal conference could be.
A retreat focusing on health and wellness has also become a personal goal of mine since I became very ill in December 2019 and was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. Receiving the news that I had serious lifelong illness was devastating, and I was forced to stop all legal work for months to focus on healing since stress was a major trigger of the illness, among other things. The doctors immediately put me on medication, but I knew I needed to make permanent lifestyle changes if I wanted to provide the optimum healing conditions for my body. I turned to yoga, meditation, walking, read every book on healing Crohn’s, listened to every podcast on natural healing strategies, and completely cleaned up my diet and was able to successfully get into a state of remission, symptom free, within 6 months of diagnosis. Over 2 years later, I’m happy to report I’m still in remission but I’ve also taken steps to limit the amount of work I take on in my practice (which is hard to do as a solo attorney) and prioritize time for self-care and stress-management (something we busy lawyers aren’t very good at). We lawyers push ourselves to the limit and endure stress every day thinking that we are immune to the negative effects of stress and burnout, but we aren’t. Too often, we forget to focus on our personal health and well-being, which somehow gets brushed aside with our busy schedules. Our career doesn’t promote a healthy work-life balance, which is exactly why we wanted to create this wellness retreat to be a fun and intimate get-away for attendees with a focus on health and stress reduction.
Attendees of the retreat will be able to partake in complimentary yoga, a “core” workout class, meditation sessions, guided hikes, as well as happy hours, s’mores by the campfire, beer and wine tasting, and dinner on the Lake Tahoe ferry. We are excited to have keynote Michelle Galloway, an attorney who will be presenting her breakfast seminar titled “Practice Competently: Calm Your Brain and Body, Regain Your Focus and Well-Being” focusing on how to manage stress-triggers in the modern world. We also welcome esteemed speaker Greg Dorst with the Other Bar, who will be speaking on the topic of substance abuse in the legal profession, and Megan Moore, attorney and professional coach, who will speak on time management skills for attorneys. Our lunch keynote speaker is fitness professional Angel Chelik who will speak on the topic of creating and leveraging healthy habits in life. In addition, we will have two substantive real property law topics presented by speakers Anna Liu and Jeremy Olsan.
It is our belief that we can truly make positive change happen in our own lives, and in our legal profession through a bigger focus on health and wellness, and through this Real Property Health & Wellness Retreat. We hope to see you there!