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Co-Women event review: 5Rs in July

Last month, Co-Women founder, Jo Child, hosted and facilitated her flagship 5Rs event alongside Co-Women member, Sally Garozzo. Co-founder, Becky, was one of the attendees, and reviews this unique networking and circle event for the blog today…

Several members who have attended 5Rs in the past have raved about it, so when a date was set I (not to be a massive cliché) moved a hair appointment I’d originally booked so that I could be at this instead. When the day arrived, our group gathered at Hove’s Float Spa in order to re-set and re-energise ourselves, ably assisted by the fact that it was a gorgeous summer afternoon.

Jo opened the event with a statement I really appreciated: often at mindset events, you’re asked to “leave everything else behind”, but Jo acknowledges that this isn’t possible or, frankly, welcome in her eyes. It’s too much to ask most people to not bring their baggage with them, as it’s part of who we are and is what’s often led to us needing a re-set in the first place, so let’s bring it along and unpack it, rather than try to squish it down further.

We started with a dance and a shake to get some feelings out of our systems in quite a visceral way. If you want to try this at home, the chosen track on this occasion was Little Girl Gone by Chinchilla (a favourite of mine this year, as it happens). Then we moved on to some laughter yoga, which I always find a bit bizarre, but does tend to be quite effective! You tend to become uncertain as to whether you’re following the instructions or laughing just because, which I think is the whole point.

The next part was one of my favourites. Split into small groups, we were given the opportunity to shout our feelings, literally get things off our chests which have been annoying us with our groupmates not being allowed to judge us. For some people, this will have surprising results. I wasn’t shocked by one of my own statements, but the room did go a bit quiet when I shouted, “I’m child-free and I’m sick of hearing about your fucking kids.” If I remember correctly, someone else in the room who’s child-free clapped, which I appreciated.

We took a break and everyone ended up outside in the sunshine chatting and getting to know each other better, before heading back to another activity. This time, we were split into different small groups and provided with a list of prompts to discuss. We were also free to add some of our own. My favourites among my group were, “if the world were run by women, what would change?” and, “what are your thoughts on your romantic partner preventing you from seeing people of the gender you’re attracted to?”.

With the original 5Rs element done, Sally took over facilitation duties and led us through a human sound bath. I’d had no idea of what to expect from this. I attended my first ever sound bath last year, and enjoyed it, but this was different – rather than external instruments making the sound, we as a group made them with our bodies. It was an incredible experience, and the silence when we were all brought to a stop was profound.

The event closed with a guided meditation led by Sally. My busy brain tends to really struggle with meditation, and I’ve started to be able to feel less like I should follow strict rules and instead do what I need to do. I found that space with Sally’s guidance, accepting that I would dip in and out of that focused state, and that as long as I eventually brought myself back to the relaxation, it would be ok.

From comments given at the end, it was clear that lots of attendees got a huge amount from the session, which is impressive in three short hours! It was lovely to be among like-minded people and escape the pressures of the outside world for a while.

If you’re sad to have missed out, make sure you sign up to the Co-Women mailing list so that you can be the first to hear about the next one!

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