Family Retreat:
Cultivating Self-Leadership

For Parents, Teens & Young Adults

with Jaclyn Long, MFT and Mindful Child & Family Staff
Jalene Salus, MFT, Travis Shubeck, PhD, & Justin Gillespie, AMFT

May 10-12, 2024 (Mother's Day Weekend)

Mount Madonna Retreat Center, Watsonville, CA

Cost: $350 per person + lodging. Full payment due by April 10.

Free Info Session:  Click here to view!

Registration: To register & reserve your spot, please pay the $100 deposit per person by clicking the link below. 

Lodging: To view lodging options, click here. When you're ready, select your lodging preferences by filling out this form

Please contact with questions.  

Join us for a nourishing & transformative family retreat at the beautiful Mount Madonna Retreat Center in California. This inspiring weekend workshop has been carefully crafted to guide you and your older children (pre- teens, teens and young adult children) on a journey of Self-Leadership. Our team of facilitators will lead you and your family members through experiential exercises to support all of you on your path together ahead.

You’ll learn tools such as the “You-Turn”, “Parts Mapping” and “Speaking for your parts instead of from your parts”.

This can be helpful when you find yourself getting activated during challenging interactions. These “un-blending” tools can help you move into a deeper relationship with these parts of yourself, so you can more effectively communicate your needs and truly listen - with a deep sense of calm, curiosity and compassion - to your loved ones when their parts get activated. By exploring these tools experientially, we’ll help you create opportunities for greater connection, harmony, and joy within your family. Our intention is to provide more than tools – we aim to provide experiences that can truly transform you, your loved ones and the dynamic between you.

How do I introduce this retreat to my teens?

We encourage you to connect with at least 5 other families your teen knows, and invite them to join you for the retreat. If your teen knows a few other teens who will be coming, it can make it more appealing to them. Perhaps the teens can camp in a tent together, while the parents stay in a lodge or cabin. This not only cuts the cost for you, it also offers a sense of adventure and autonomy for your teenager. 

We’ll have facilitators leading three different sub-groups for pre-teens (10-13), teens (13-16) and young adults (17-23+). Please note that age groups might be adjusted depending on the ages of those who attend. We'll do our best to keep friends in the same group together.

Parents are more than welcome to come alone, without your children, for any reason, including 1) if you have very young children but are interested in learning about parenting with Self- Leadership, 2) your teen / adult children are not interested in attending, or 3) your young adults live too far away to be able to attend, but you would still like to come. We warmly welcome you attending on your own! Great benefit can still come from attending this family retreat by yourself.

A very wholesome, sweet & supportive group of teens interested in Self growth & Self discovery is forming for this weekend. Join us!

In addition to experiential learning through group / family activities and separate sub-group exercises, you’ll get a chance to explore optional morning / evening movement opportunities. You can choose between hiking in the redwoods, dance, or gentle yoga.

For those interested in gentle yoga, the yoga mats and props will be provided. No previous yoga experience is necessary.

Nourish your nervous system, move through stuck emotions, and become more embodied as you connect with parts of you that have been seeking your compassionate presence with trauma-informed, restorative, and yin yoga led by Jaclyn Long, MFT, Certified Yoga Teacher.

When not engaged in the workshop or enjoying the delicious, healthy food, we invite you to explore the gorgeous hiking trails lined with redwood trees in the surrounding area. The vegetarian meals are lovingly prepared by the Mount Madonna staff with delicious vegan and gluten free options. Mount Madonna states "We serve vegetarian and plant-based meals with a focus on local, organic ingredientswhen possible. Our homemade meals are simple, with low spice and low sugar." The staff cares about your dietary needs, and we encourage you to make your needs and/or preferences known when you fill out the lodging form. Email with accommodation questions.



  • 3:00 - 5:00pm: Check-in at Community Building   
  • 5:15 - 6:15pm: Dinner
  • 6:30 - 8:30 pm: Opening Circle & Intention Setting in Conference Center
  • 8:30 - 9:30pm: Options: Restorative Yoga | Art | Night Walk


  • 7:30-8:30am: Mother’s Day Yoga and / or Dance | Hike | Art | Sleep-In
  • 8:30-9:30am: Breakfast
  • 9:30-10:30am: Demo: What Self-Leadership looks like
  • 10:30-12pm: Fishbowl: Integration
  • 12pm-12:30pm Goodbyes & Clean up
  • 12:30-1:30pm Lunch


  • 8:00 - 9:00am: Hike | Art | Somatic Movement & Dance | Sleep-In
  • 9:00 - 10:00am: Intro to Self & Parts
  • 10:00 - 11:00am: Breakfast
  • 11:15am - 1pm: Parts Mapping
  • 1:00 - 2:00pm: Light snack / break
  • 2:00 - 3:30pm: The “You-Turn”
  • 3:30 - 4:20pm: Speaking for not from parts
  • 4:20 - 4:30pm: Short break
  • 4:30 - 5:00pm: Q&A
  • 5:15 - 6:15pm: Dinner
  •  6:30 - 8:30pm: Reflections
  •  8:30 – 9:30pm: Options: Art | Restorative Yoga | Night Walk

Don't miss this opportunity to help your family heal and transform as you all learn the great benefits that come from getting to know the parts inside your system and cultivating Self-Leadership!

Click Here to register for our FREE Info Session on Wed 4/10 at 5pm!


What’s the minimum age?

Can my child attend if my child is close to the minimum age? We will do our best to hold the age boundaries, and will need to address this on a case by case basis. Please email with these inquiries.

My child / teen is reluctant to attend, but I would like to attend. What do you suggest?

Please see the section on “How do I introduce this retreat to my teens?”

How do I introduce this retreat to my teens?

We highly recommend inviting a few of your children’s friends to help make the retreat more fun and engaging for your kids, and also to help create more community around Self-discovery - both during and also after the retreat. Also, it might be helpful for your teens to know that teens 13+ and older will be given freedom of choice to participate in activities or not. Please note that pre-teens 10-12 will be required to stay in their small groups, but will always have the option to “pass” or to “choose to not participate” if they prefer. Every activity will be of choice - it’s just the level of choice that will be determined by the age group.

Is there wifi?

There is wifi in most guest rooms (not cabins), meeting spaces, and in the community building and cafe. Cell phone reception can be spotty, though texting works well. Verizon works best, AT&T is decent, and Sprint and T-Mobile are limited.

Will our dietary needs / restrictions be accommodated?

Yes indeed! The food is vegetarian with vegan and gluten free options readily available. You will have an opportunity to state your dietary restrictions when you pay for your meals & accommodations. Mount Madonna Meal Info

What do you recommend I bring?

Bring your own water bottles / coffee / tea mugs. Mount Madonna Center will provide cups but they are small. Towels are provided. Bring bathing suits for the hot tub, and maybe games for your cabin.

Is massage & bodywork available?

Yes - visit Mount Madonna's Wellness Center webpage here, be sure to book in advance.

Are there any rules or guidelines that I need to be aware of?

Quiet hours are 9:00pm to 8:00am. We do not allow alcohol, marijuana, illegal drugs, or pets. We do not allow smoking, except in the designated area. Please do not bring food of any kind to the Center. Please do not wear or use scented products or essential oils as many people are allergic and/or sensitive.

Our family is very connected. Do we need to have any problems to come on this retreat?

This family retreat is an opportunity to learn & grow together. There doesn't need to be any "issues" at all! Many of the families who are attending have great relationships with each other, and simply want to learn more about the Internal Family Systems of Self-Leadership, which is a helpful model of self-growth and self-discovery. This model also offers some helpful tools for navigating challenges that inevitably arise in even the healthiest and most functional relationships. So we hope you and your close-knit family will join us. We look forward to learning and growing together!