Retreat Preparation

IMPORTANT: please do the following now:

  • Bookmark this page now so you can return to it later.
  • Forward the address of this prep page to your partner.
  • Send us you and your partner’s contact information using this form →

How Your Retreat Is Confirmed

Specific dates for a retreat get reserved by submitting pre-payment using a sign-up page. On the sign-up page, you specify the starting date and length of your retreat.

As a reminder, here are the sign-up pages for the different retreats we offer:

After submitting pre-payment, usually, you could consider your retreat dates to be confirmed. This is normally always the case.

However, if payment was significantly delayed after initially discussing dates with us, another couple may have in the meantime reserved the same dates. If there is a problem like that with your reservation, we will quickly get back to you.

So, rule of thumb, if you do not hear back from us within 24 hours of submitting payment, you can assume your retreat dates have been confirmed.

Notice of confirmation also appears on the payment receipt that is automatically emailed to you when you submit payment for your retreat. We also auto-send a separate email of confirmation. If you did not receive these, check your email spam folder.

During the Coronavirus crisis, we are conducting all retreats virtually using Zoom online interactive video. No retreats are being conducted in person in California.

Retreat Timing

Private Retreats typical full-day schedule (Pacific Time):
— Morning Session 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
— Afternoon Session 2:30 PM – 5:30 PM

With online Private Retreats, you may schedule your work with us to fit your specific timing needs. And you can spread a series of 3-hour sessions over many days.

The tasks below are to start helping you now…

The tasks below are suggested for you to prepare for your retreat. Don’t think of these as “homework” to do for us. Think of it as starting your retreat process now.

The tasks below are designed to help you and your partner to better understand each other, to help you each begin to see what’s really under your negative communication patterns and to give you some basic tools and information that can potentially start improving things now.

However, no worries if you don’t have time to do these tasks. Your retreat stands on its own, and its outcome will not depend on you doing this work. It’s up to you.

That said, we strongly recommend doing as much as you can! If you only do one thing, do the personality type testing (#2 below), and do it as thoroughly as you can! You will be starting your retreat now, and probably get much more out of it when you come.

1. Your retreat goals

Make a list of the three top goals you have for the retreat. Put these in as positive a form as possible. Here’s an example:

A couple wants to stop getting so upset with one another. The positive form of the goal is what? To start communicating in a way that feels open, safe, inviting, and healing.

Really think about your goals. Then write them down and bring them to the retreat.

2. Your personality type

Determine your personality types to see how differences between your personalities as partners come into play in creating friction in your relationship, and what to do about it.

Get information and knowledge about this, and it starts to change how you see and understand each other (and yourselves too).

This test includes vital audio recordings that describe the personality types in-depth.

The test starts with what we call “teaser” tests. These are superficial do not generate highly accurate results.

It’s important that you take the test all the way to where you listen to the audio descriptions to confirm and deepen your understandings of your personality and that of your partner.

So yes, share your results with your partner. Listen to the audio descriptions of each other’s personality types.

Start your personality test now →

3. Read Five-Minute Relationship Repair

If you really want to get an in-depth head start on your retreat, get the book Five-Minute Relationship Repair. Read it, and do as many of the exercises in it you can. It will help you identify the root cause of any reactive pattern of poor communication you fall into. It will also give you tools for repairing that pattern — tools that we can further apply and deepen in working together at your retreat. Any time you spend with this book will move you forward now and benefit what you get from your retreat.

We highly recommend getting the physical book, and purchasing it at as they share profits with local bookstores. There are e-books at apple books,, and (Note: We disavow the audiobook, an embarrassing narration produced without our knowledge that utterly fails to convey the tone of the book).

Purchase Five-Minute Relationship Repair at now →

There is a Workbook that accompanies this book. Do as many of the exercises as you can. This will dramatically increase your knowledge well before we meet.

The link below is to a PDF file. You may know how to click on the link to directly download it to your computer. But if you just click on it, your web browser will show it to you, and then you can save it or print it from there.

Download the accompanying Workbook PDF file here →

4. Self assessment

If you do the previous step and do the exercises in its accompanying Workbook, you can skip this step (it is redundant). Compared to this step, the step above offers far more self-assessment and knowledge, so we recommend doing the above over the brief self-assessment in this step (though that does take more time).

But if you don’t do the step above and the exercises, then here are a few pages to fill out. The material in these pages will help you better identify your patterns of poor communication and negative cycles you fall into.

The link below is to a PDF file. You may know how to click on the link to directly download it to your computer. But if you just click on it, your web browser will show it to you, and then you can save it or print it from there.

Either way, print up these pages, making two copies — one for each of you. Fill in each of the pages. Then bring these with you to your retreat.

Download your self assessment PDF file here →

5. Send your contact info

Please make sure you have sent us you and your partner’s full names, birth dates, email addresses, and cell phone numbers you will have with you when you are here.

If you haven’t done so above at the top of this page, then use this form →

6. Make your final Private Retreat payment before you arrive

If you opted to make a half payment to reserve your Private Retreat, please remember to make your final payment before you arrive.

Use the appropriate link below to get to your correct payment page:

Do your best with the above preparatory tasks, but certainly don’t worry if you cannot get to it. Doing the things above will give you a head start, but a retreat stands on its own, and our time together will be powerful either way.

We look forward to our time together in your Couples Retreat.

If you have any questions, call 707-536-5781 — or use our contact form →

Warmest wishes,
Healing Couples Retreats