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Published: June 8, 2024

Reconnect and Rejoice: Recap of IIN’s Inspirational Weekend

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After more than two years, IIN was able to bring our community together for a weekend of reconnecting, rejoicing, embracing, and learning. Over two days, IIN students and alumni experienced the essence of what an IIN education offers: a supportive and uplifting community of Health Coaches who are eager to better the well-being of the world through their work.

Jim Curtis, IIN’s head coach and head of brand, and Nora McCaffrey, IIN’s chief academic officer, hosted the event and wove the speakers together, bringing energy and excitement for attendees. The anticipation was palpable – everyone was craving connection after a tremendously difficult time. IIN is very honored to have been able to host this incredible event!

Day One: Functional and Integrative Nutrition in Practice

Lynda Cloud, IIN CEO

Lynda Cloud kicked off the weekend by asking everyone to be present and keep their minds open and expansive. She reminded everyone that in order to be present as our best selves and show up as our best selves, we must “fill our cups” accordingly. Caring for our own health is how we’ll care for that of others!

Joshua Rosenthal, MScEd, IIN Founder

Joshua Rosenthal reflected on creating the school we know today as IIN 30 years ago, including the many challenges he faced along the way ‒ from financial difficulties to pushback from healthcare professionals who did not understand what health coaching was. He emphasized how far IIN and our global community have come, as well as the tremendous impact our 155,000 students and graduates have had on countless people all over the world.

Mel Wells

Mel Wells, coach, author, speaker, retreat host and IIN graduate, shared her powerful story about how she found IIN. Her father had been ill, and she started reading voraciously about different diets and lifestyles that could potentially help him. Through that experience, she learned about IIN and enrolled, despite her financial constraints at the time.

Fast forward to today: She’s found massive success with coaching, speaking, and leading global retreats. She ended her talk with a grounding meditation, encouraging the audience to visualize their success.

“I had that feeling in my stomach...that my soul was leading me in the direction of my destiny. That my path was divinely aligned and I was meant to be here.” 

Maya Feller, MS, RD, CDN

Maya Feller, registered dietitian nutritionist, cookbook author, and IIN visiting faculty member, shared her experience in her early work as an RD and how she learned that even if she provided nutritional care that was rooted in scientific evidence, it had to be aligned with the patients she was serving ‒ or else it wouldn’t work. In other words, she needed to take social determinants of health into account so that she could truly serve her patients and offer patient-centered care.

She further spoke of the need for Health Coaches to become more aware of their own implicit biases and how those may impact their work with their clients. This means learning about the culture and ethnicity of their clients, where they live, what health resources they do or don’t have access to, and any other factors that make up their unique lives that could affect health.

“Social determinants of health are known as the conditions under which we live, work, and play and are directly linked to the variables that all people need to express health.”

maya feller speaking at miami 2022 event

Image source: Kendall King/IIN

Robyn Youkilis

Robyn Youkilis, Health Coach, gut health expert, and IIN visiting faculty member, guided event attendees through the afternoon, sharing her personal experience of becoming a successful coach and giving attendees opportunities to ask questions and share their own experiences. 

Andrew Weil, MD

Andrew Weil, MD, world-renowned pioneer and leader in the field of integrative medicine, and IIN visiting faculty member, spoke on the importance of the whole person in treating illness. As a fierce proponent for a more integrated healthcare system, Dr. Weil shared more about why the conventional medical and healthcare system’s failing and how Health Coaches can be part of the solution.

“We must look at the whole person, not just the physical body. We’re also mental, emotional beings, community members, spiritual entities ‒ and you have to look at those other dimensions of human life in order to understand health and illness.”

Daniel Amen, MD

Daniel Amen, MD, also known as “Doc Amen,” is an adult and child psychiatrist, author, brain-imaging pioneer, and IIN visiting faculty member. Dr. Amen dove into why brain health, mental health, and physical health must be addressed together and the profound impact our lifestyle behaviors can have on brain health.

Dr. Amen was referring to the many things you do every day that can affect the brain, from the food you eat and the exercise you do to the negative things you say to yourself and the destructive behaviors you partake in, like excessive drinking and smoking.

“The smallest thing people can do for their brain with the biggest result is to ask yourself this ‒ ‘Is this good for my brain or bad for it?’”

daniel amen speaking at miami 2022 event

Image source: Kendall King/IIN 

Melissa Wood-Tepperberg

Interviewed by Jim Curtis, Melissa Wood-Tepperberg, founder of Melissa Wood Health, creator of the MWH Method, and IIN visiting faculty member, spoke about facing obstacles; the importance of having a team of people beside you who believe in you and bring out the best version of yourself; and replacing the “compare and despair” attitude with a more effective mindset. She also led Jim and the crowd through a short arm workout that was a real burner!

melissa wood-tepperberg speaking at miami 2022 event

Image source: Kendall King/IIN

Jenay Rose

Jenay Rose, online business expert, creator of the BOSS Method, and IIN visiting faculty member, shared the ins and outs of sharing authentically on social media to grow your business. She emphasized the importance of creating a solid foundation for your online growth, including fully understanding who your audience is, why they need you, and how you can help them.

“Selling is serving.”

Day Two: Mental, Emotional and Spiritual Well-Being

David Lepp and Marit Tuisk

David Lepp, who has an extensive alternative healing background and regularly hosts sound baths and Yoga Nidra meditations, and Marit Tuisk, who’s certified in feng shui and Chinese energy medicine, kicked off day two with intention setting and a sound bath session. This somatic moment encouraged everyone to get grounded for the day and cleanse their minds and bodies to absorb everything that was to come!

“Allow that intention to drop into your heart space and sigh it out. Keep your eyes closed and take a moment to remember that vibration of love and light and inviting in unconditional love.” – Marit Tuisk

Joshua Rosenthal

Back for day two, Joshua spoke about key principles that make up IIN’s educational theory ‒ bio-individuality, primary food, synchronicity, and the ability to self-heal. These core concepts are simple yet powerful and are unique to IIN’s Health Coach Training Program curriculum.

He also facilitated moments of “paired shares” in the audience, inviting attendees to turn to their neighbors and answer a prompt about coaching. These microsessions during Joshua’s larger talk sparked moments of connection that allowed attendees to open up and feel heard and seen.

“Sometimes when slowing down and doing less, we’re more likely to be in the right place at the right time.”

joshua rosenthal speaking at miami 2022 event

Image source: Kendall King/IIN

Sah D’Simone

Sah D’Simone, spiritual revolutionary, yogi, mystic, artist, and internationally best-selling author, guided the audience through his somatic healing technique. Sah encouraged the community to reframe how they thought about healing as well as the need to embody healing instead of intellectualizing it. The technique he led the crowd through was energizing, heat building, and powerful, with affirmations along the way such as:

“I am open to miracles.”

Deepak Chopra, MD

Deepak Chopra, MD, world-renowned pioneer in integrative medicine and personal transformation, founder of The Chopra Foundation, author of 91(!) books, and IIN visiting faculty member, talked to the community about the future of well-being, including its seven major pillars: sleep, stress management, movement, emotions, nutrition and nourishment, biological rhythms and grounding, and self-awareness and realization. He dove into why we must release ourselves from our perceptions of reality to unleash our full potential, including realizing our greatest health and well-being.

“What are the tiny waves of the universe made of? Scientists’ best answer is ‘infinite possibilities.’”

Valerie Oula

Valerie Oula is the director of vibrational energy healing at The Well in New York City; founder of Modern Ritual NYC, a holistic lifestyle offering for mind, body, and soul; a meditation and yogic-movement instructor; a Reiki master teacher, and an energy medicine practitioner. Valerie spoke about the vibrations that make up our universe – everything has vibrational energy! Valerie led the community through a resonant-breathing session set to the tune of 32 metronomes, a wildly calming experience.

“Everything is energy, everything is vibration. Vibration is communication.
That’s why we say things are ‘a vibe.’”

Pilin Anice

Pilin Anice, skilled movement and wellness guide and performing artist, Health Coach, and IIN visiting faculty member, led attendees through an empowering moment of movement. Pilin shared with the crowd that despite being nervous to show up, she felt like she’d been called to be there ‒ and it echoed throughout not just her session but the entire weekend! Pilin got everyone up and out of their seats to feel the benefits that moving, even for a short time, can bring. 

Gabby Bernstein

Ending the weekend on an incredibly high note, Gabby Bernstein, renowned spiritual teacher, bestselling author, highly sought-after speaker, and IIN visiting faculty member, spoke about how to generate true confidence and continue to show up in the world even when you’re facing the toughest of challenges. Her vulnerability and honesty brought the crowd to tears, demonstrating that we must be willing to be imperfect.

“Confidence ‒ the resilient ability to come back to you.”

gabby bernstein speaking at miami 2022 event

Image source: Kendall King/IIN

Gain Access to These Teachers and More

The magic of the IIN community can be yours to experience when you enroll in The Health Coach Training Program. It offers more than 95 visiting faculty (including many of the speakers at our latest event!) and the most comprehensive holistic health and health coaching curriculum available.

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June 8, 2024

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