Jo Child is the founder of Co-Women, the social club for Sussex women in business, and facilitator of joy for the women in her member community. We caught up with Jo to find out about her flagship event, 5R’s and why she is so passionate about prioritising joy for self-care.
OK, I have to share this with you because I’m so excited to bring you an event which I guarantee will balance your mood, boost your mental health, improve your relationship with yourself as well as with others, revive your energy levels and give you newfound creative energy for your business! 5R’s is an event I’ve curated to completely reset your wellbeing in just a few hours, and I’m certain that this is an event you’ll want to return to again and again to restore equilibrium and feel fantastic.
The name comes from how the event is structured into five sections; Release, Revive, Refuel, Request/Recommend, and Restore. Let’s start with Release. I spend an enormous amount of my time researching the science of joy and happiness and this is what I know to be true:
Toxic positivity is damaging our basic foundational need to express human emotion safely. The Dalai Lama recognises that to experience authentic joy, we must experience the whole spectrum of emotions and claims that “without the dark, there is no such thing as lightness”.
The truth is that society teaches us “don’t be angry”, when in fact anger is a necessary human emotion like any other and often a valid reaction to an act of injustice and wrongdoing, insofar as the amygdala in our brain recognises an action by another is wrong and warrants recognition, with hope we might avert the same circumstance in the future. It’s the choices we make around how we channel our anger that can prove detrimental when not properly resourced, leading to feeling “out of control”. Ignoring and compartmentalising the emotion of anger is to suppress a very real part of ourselves and that is simply not healthy.
The well being space has been more recently acknowledged as a tricky industry to navigate, with many supposedly trusted spiritual “gurus” pushing the Law of Attraction agenda. It’s true that positive thinking greatly impacts our perception of the world and therefore can influence the decisions we make which in turn bring us a successful outcome. It’s equally true that, as with most things in life, we must apply common sense and balance to the proceedings. There is no shame in experiencing a negative emotion, and you are certainly not attracting bad juju by experiencing a natural response of sadness or anger to a situation that understandably warrants it. If it helps, consider that the insistence women should always stay positive is to also stay quiet. Ask, believe, receive? More like smile, say less, don’t make a fuss. But the patriarchal argument is one for another day. I digress…
In this dichotomy of recognising valid emotions and yet striving for positivity and goodness, what is one to do? Following my research it became very clear to me that an outlet is required to release these emotions safely, without judgement and essentially, without engagement.
So, coming back to 5R’s and the first section of our event, Release. We are going to utilise our voices to speak our truth, verbalise those irks which we each have, and release them safely in order to make space for joy. This is not a space for validation and engagement because you don’t need it. Your peers are simply holding space where you are safe to just, say it. And in saying it, it dissipates. With those feelings gone, the remaining sections of the event have your full attention and you have capacity to fully benefit from them.
With the space created you’ll be taken on a journey of mini exercises to fill your heart soul and mind with energy, inspiration and joy.
The first half of the day focuses on your serotonin levels with dancing (Revive) and laughter yoga exercises (Refuel) to make you feel uplifted. Both of which have both positive emotional and physiological effects. Dancing shakes out the tension we hold in our bodies and moving around keeps oxygen feeding all those lovely hormones that make us feel great. Laughter reduces adrenaline, lowers blood pressure and significantly reduces cortisol, the stress hormone. Furthermore, laughter with others is bonding from a scientific perspective. According to research by Professor Sophie Scott, we recognise our peers far quicker by their laugh than by their speaking voice! Humour is a social event that connects us and separates us from any other mammal. While other species laugh, it’s only humans that laugh more when in the company of others.
Following this we’re topping up your reward chemical dopamine by giving you a chance to offer advice to your peers and reach out for support yourself, with nourishing conversations. This will be a time to really bond with each other and there will be question prompts available to help you along. This is such a healing and rewarding part of the day and will increase your body's production of oxytocin to boot!
There will be intermittent coffee breaks and time for lunch and then the final part of the day Restore is pure restorative bliss! My special guest Sally Garozzo will lead a human sound bath designed to help us feel connected on a very deep and spiritual level, and then a quiet meditation will follow to bring the day to a peaceful close.
I really believe this is the routine well-being reset that all women will love and receive huge benefit from, and because I’m so convinced and passionate about this, I’m putting my money where my mouth is! First of all, I’m offering the first mega five hour version of this event for just £5! (£7.50 for non-members) Additionally, if you don’t absolutely love it, I will even refund you! This event should be accessible to everyone and I’m so lucky I can bring the first one at a price that’s entirely manageable by most people. It will never be this price again so if I’ve intrigued you, grab a ticket now while they’re still available. (At the time of this blog going out, 25% tickets have already sold)
Head to www.co-women.org and over to our event page to book.