The pandemic has rattled us, changed us,
exhausted us, shaken us.

And for many of us, it's brought up questions of "what do I really want?"

If you are exhausted, scattered, and wondering what you want to bother about, this is the retreat for you.

How often have you tried to settle down, to listen for calling you, only to get distracted again by work, making dinner, checking social media or Netflix?

How often have you craved time to truly unplug but then wondered: how do I actually do that? I can't seem to stop.

Or perhaps you are good at stopping but you get confused about how to trust what's calling you?

If you crave refueling, creative play, and getting clear on what's next, come spend time in beauty, silence, and community with me and a small hand-picked group of amazing women.

“Jen is one of those special individuals who not only wears a cloak of many colors, but utilizes her colorful cloak to warm others. Besides being a great storyteller and teacher, she is also a master retreat leader. Heck, she wrote the book on it! She knows what a woman needs on retreat. She knows we need community and solitude, rest and activity, laughter and silence, attention to body and mind. She understands that we need a safe container, comfortable surroundings, nourishing food we don’t have to prepare, and permission to put outside commitments aside in order to dive deeper into our creative work. For as long as I am able and she is offering them, I will be giving myself the gift of Jen Louden retreats. Will you?”

– Mary Montanye, author of Above Tree Line: A Memoir

Join us in North Carolina at the fabulous Snow Bird Mountain Lodge for 5 nights and 6 days devoted to finding or resparking your creative joy and desire!

The Snow Bird Mountain Lodge provides a wonderful location for us to reconnect with our desires and find our next why bother stage. 

The Smoky Mountain vistas provide the perfect backdrop to relax, reflect, and connect. Whether it's sitting in front of the fireplace, lounging on the porch, or finishing up another healthy delicious meal, you might hear yourself think, “I could get used to folllowing my desires.” And that, my friend, is exactly what this retreat is all about! 

Retreat Schedule:

8 am: Dance Yourself Awake  (movement to help your imagination and heart open and get your heart rate up, always optional like everything in the retreat)

9 am:      Healthy delicious Breakfast is served. 


10 am -  12 pm.    Meditation and workshop time.  Go inward to explore questions about your priorities, your values, and your desires. Play with creative ways of seeing and thinking. Strengthen your self-trust. Amplify the whispers of desire.  


12 pm:   Lunch!   Enjoy a quiet meal alone or dine with like-minded explorers.

1 - 3 pm:  Free time. Enjoy the resort amenities with a hike or sit in beauty read. Nap. Listen to your heart. One afternoon Jen will offer an optional writing workshop for any writers on retreat.


3  - 5 pm.    Explore concepts from Jen's work like Conditions of Enoughness, Signature Themes, self-trust, Shadow Comforts amd more through photo desire walks, black out art, image alchemy, ad-lib style journaling, and other creative fun ways that trick your brain to see in fresh ways. Plus: it's fun. You need fun.

5 pm More free time! Unplug. Slow down. Be.


8pm:     Dinner is served.  More amazing healthy food to savor. 

After dinner:    Gather around for stories and connection before a good night's sleep. 

Everything on the schedule is optional. This is your time to follow your desires. 

On our final day together, September 9th, we’ll enjoy our normal morning session and a leisurely breakfast before you head home.

The retreats I create are among the best on the planet.

Wow, that’s a bold claim.

Okay, I can’t know that for a fact, but what I do know is hundreds of women over the course of 20+ years have told me, “I have been to so many retreats and yours are the best.” I can’t wait to share this brand new Desire Retreat experience with you based on my new book, Why Bother? Discover the Desire for What’s Next! 

Every morning we will start with (optional) Dance Yourself Awake. After breakfast, we will spend the morning in session together including time for silent reflection, trickster prompts, outdoor explorations, and small groups.

Lunch will be followed by supported free time with fun and silent options.
We will come back together for another group session mid-afternoon.

After dinner there will be time for guided meditations, creative silliness, and council.

On our final day together, September 9th, we’ll enjoy our normal morning session and a leisurely breakfast before you head home.

I love this book like I love my closest girlfriends, because just like them, it is funny and smart and brave. Like them, it is comfortable with the mess and the vulnerability--in me and in life. Like them, it digs into the details, the nuances of how we forge our paths, the stuff it often seems like no one is willing to talk about. Whenever I put it down while reading, I craved going back to it, for more mentorship and comfort.

It's a truism among us personal growth writers to say that everything we are writing about has been written about a thousand times before, but I'm telling you - this book is important, and it has never been written before.

-Tara Mohr, author, Playing Big: Practical Wisdom for Women Who Want to Speak Up, Create and Lead

Join me and a group of like-minded, no-advice giving people for a retreat like no other.
What will be different for you after this retreat?

  • You'll know what is no longer yours to bother about and you’ll start to let it go
  • You'll see where your identity and self-concept need to shift for your next “why bother?” to take shape
  • You'll have given voice to your signature themes and identified next steps to explore
  • You'll have touched oneness through your body, through stillness, and through self-compassion
  • You'll know you are seen and that you belong
  • You'll have a clear idea of how to use Conditions of Enoughness to continue your exploration
  • You'll have played, created, wondered, and experienced moments of awe and soul reconnection
  • You'll know your desires matter

Most importantly?

You’ll have rested deeply.

You will know the spaciousness and time your body and mind

need to calm down and listen honestly.

Registration Requirements

This writer’s retreat is open to women and anyone who identifies as female, is ready to co-create the retreat with me and the group by showing up fully, following guidelines, and bringing an open mind and heart.

* To attend the retreat - you must be vaccinated.

More on the Money Stuff

You’ll stay in charming lodges, nestled among trees and gardens.

You'll have the choice between three different room types but all are single rooms with your own private bath. The cabins are beautifully decorated, homey, and surrounded by nature.
Your retreat includes all meals, all supplies, all activities, and single room + bath.

To select your spot, choose a room type below. You'll be taken to PayPal to place your deposit and
then automatically redirected to a brief application.

Why the different room types?


Need to cancel after paying in full? If you cancel more than 90 days before the retreat begins, we will return your payment minus the non-refundable deposit. The non-refundable deposit is the equivalent to $650. If you cancel within 90 days of the retreat, we will not refund any monies, but you are welcome to sell or give away your spot to someone, contingent upon approval of the guest by Jen.

What about the coronavirus?

We will follow the CDC’s guidelines for coronavirus so for example, if you need to cancel because of your age or underlying health conditions, or if domestic instructions from the CDC change to restrict travel, we will waive our refund policy.

To attend the retreat - you must be vaccinated. 

These retreats are for: 

  • Anyone in a transition of any kind: career, family, divorce, empty nest, retirement, before or after grad school, you name it
  • Anyone craving new creative life and spirit
  • Anyone who feels they can’t settle down long enough to truly listen to what they want and need
  • Anyone who is afraid to discover her desires
  • Anyone who keeps putting her career, her family, her friends, her parents, her pets first
  • Anyone who is willing to co-create with me and the group, to show up bravely and fully, and to take responsibility for her experience

These retreats are not for: 

  • Anyone in crisis; this retreat is NOT a therapeutic retreat and is not suitable for anyone whose life is in a meltdown
  • Anyone currently suffering from an episode of serious depression
  • Anyone who needs to emerge from this retreat with a clear plan for immediate action; especially in regards to earning money
  • Anyone who will not or cannot participate in small group sharing (carefully created small groups with a very specific container and guidelines)
  • Anyone who isn’t comfortable with a range of life experiences and people
  • Anyone who can’t maintain silence or an advice-free zone

Who Is Jen?

Jennifer Louden is a personal growth pioneer who helped launch the concept of self-care with her first best-selling book The Woman’s Comfort Book. She’s the author of 7 additional books on well-being and whole living: The Couple’s Comfort Book, The Pregnant Woman’s Comfort Book, The Woman’s Retreat Book, Comfort Secrets for Busy Women (The Comfort Queen’s Guide to Life in hardcover), The Life Organizer, A Year of Daily Joy and her forthcoming Why Bother? Discover the Desire for What’s Next. There are about a million copies of her books in print in 9 languages. 

Jennifer has spoken around the U.S., Canada, and Europe, written a national magazine column for a Martha Stewart magazine, been profiled or quoted in dozens of major magazines, and appeared on hundreds of TV and radio shows and podcasts, even on Oprah. Her books have been published by Harper, Random House, New World Library, National Geographic, and herself. Jennifer has been teaching retreats and leading workshops since 1992, and creating vibrant on-line communities and innovative learning experiences since 2000. She married the love of her life at 50, and is the very proud mom of Lillian and very proud bonus mom to Aidan.

Jen’s superpower is loving you into doing. She thrives on helping you believe in yourself by taking action on your writing desires. She is a master at creating safe grounded space for real work and lasting breakthroughs to happen.

I know you will cherish your week with us – it truly is magical.

With love,

What's next for you is going to stun you, thrill you, and of course, frighten you. But you are going to be so ready to open to it all. 

So ready to get your bother on.

Because when you show up for this retreat with an open heart and mind, wonder-filled goodness and inner miracles are going to happen. 

I can't wait to see the desire, the self-trust, and the faith this retreat awakens and restores in you.

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