Once travel resumes, wanderlusters will be looking to nourish their mind, body and soul by integrating movement, nutrition, connection and adventure into their life.
What do you do when you’re suffering work-related burnout and an existential crisis? If you’re former clean-tech VCs and athletes John Stanton and Robin Connelley, you create Chōsen Experiences. Held in luxuriously lush private accommodation on the spiritual island of Bali, and led by a team of wellness and performance experts, Chōsen offers a variety of experiences, the key of which is the seven-day Life Optimization programme. The programme encompasses flow-state awareness, functional movement, adventurous wellness, and mindfulness.
“We create emotionally and physically powerful experiences that lead to deep learning,” says Stanton. “The programme is neuro-designed to give attendees, who normally deal with high levels of stress, the space for reflection and learning.” Basically, it’s aimed at those experiencing challenges in balancing health and longevity with achievement and solving big problems.
During the programme, participants also learn about optimal nutrition, movement, connection, communication, neurological inputs from the environment, and activities that promote neuroplasticity. “The wellness and performance aspects are designed to get attendees to a place where they can define their own ikigai, or ‘reason for being’, a key aspect of wellbeing,” explains Stanton.
The programme is challenging, although in what exact ways depends on the individual. For some, it will be the physical components, while for others it will be the emotional reflection. There’s also lots of laughter, fun, and play. “What’s so incredible about this type of learning is that the breakthroughs are amplified when everyone is on the journey together,” says Stanton. “What you take away from repelling a 30-metre waterfall or a conversation about ikigai will be personal, but the impact of hearing other’s experiences, and the connections formed, cannot be understated.”
Both the accommodation and the location play important roles. “Like the rest of the programme, optimal recovery is vital to reaching a point of breakthrough,” explains Stanton. “The accommodation is part of how we down-regulate our attendees’ nervous systems – well-appointed, amazing beds, being in touch with nature, all-natural toiletries, food from our partner organic farms, and so on.” He adds that there’s simply something special about Bali. “That je ne sais quoi is why we made this incredible island our Asia hub.”
There are numerous off-site activities that allow participants to visit untouched areas, interacting with nature in adventurous ways. The long-lasting impact on each attendee is referred to as the Chōsen Effect. Stanton concludes, “You leave feeling like you can overcome any challenge, with a calm confidence and a plan to incorporate the skills learned.”