The Origin of Killin’ It Camp with Rebecca Sidoti | POP 776

A photo of Rebecca Sidoti is captured. Rebecca Sidoti is the owner of Mind by Design Counseling in New Jersey. Rebecca Sidoti is featured on Practice of the Practice, a therapist podcast.

Do you have other clinical or professional skills that you want to develop? Have you been thinking about what waits for you on the other side of your private practice? Are you waiting for an environment that can support you in skyrocketing your business?

In this podcast episode, Joe Sanok speaks about the origin of Killin’ It Camp with Rebecca Sidoti.

Podcast Sponsor: Level Up Week

A photo of the Podcast, Sponsor Level Up Week, is captured. Level Up week sponsors the Practice of the Practice Podcast

You’re probably entering that phase where you start to set yourself up for 2023, you’re thinking about what your goals are gonna be, what you’re not going to do, and what you hope to achieve.

But regardless of where you are within your private practice journey, I’m challenging you to make these last few months count, to dig deep, and to make next year the one for big changes within your business – and more importantly – within yourself.

So if you’ve been looking for a sign to either start your own private practice, grow from solo to group, or become a next-level group practice boss, this is it…and you’re certainly not alone, because Practice of the Practice is doing something we’ve never done before.

We’re so convinced that now is the time for you to grow that we’re dedicating all our resources to help you do it. We’re all in. Every single one of us. And we’re inviting you to go all in and level up.

From September 12 to 15 we’ll be running ‘Level Up’ week to help you decide what will work best for you in your private practice journey. There will be webinars, Q&As with experts, and a chance for you to meet your accountability partners, facilitators, and community.

So if you’re ready to make a change and level up, register at practiceofthepractice.com/levelup and follow our Facebook and Instagram pages @practiceofthepractice for live updates and event details.

Make September 2022 the month that you start your journey and level up.

Meet Rebecca Sidoti

An image of Rebecca Sidoti is captured. She is the owner of Mind by Design Counseling in New Jersey and she specializes in anxiety, trauma, OCD and phobias. She is featured on the Practice of the Practice, a therapist podcast.Rebecca Sidoti is the owner of Mind by Design Counseling in New Jersey and she specializes in anxiety, trauma, OCD, and phobias. Though she fully believes in the power of traditional therapies, she also provides Virtual Reality Therapy as a tool in session to help progress in exposure therapy, trauma-focused work, and distress tolerance.

Rebecca uses evidenced-based approaches, but her first and foremost is the “no-nonsense counseling” approach, which cuts out the rigid, too-clinical feel that therapy sometimes has and welcomes the raw human interaction.

Visit Mind By Design Counseling and connect on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

In This Podcast

  • Brainstorming what Killin’ It Camp could be
  • Design by survey
  • Creating a space for networking
  • Rebecca’s advice to private practitioners

Brainstorming what Killin’ It Camp could be

Knowing that there was flexibility and also a … breaking away from [what] would be a corporate-type of conference. (Rebecca Sidoti)

The organizers and creators of Killin’ It Camp knew in some ways what they didn’t want it to be; they didn’t want it to be 8-hours of sitting and listening with no respite or space for creative exploration or communication.

There was an urge to transition away from corporate America and to make this conference their own, and in a way that they would want to attend as a guest.

Design by survey

The Practice of the Practice team sent out a survey to all their intrigued participants, asking them to send in their preferences.

[Those surveys] helped to narrow down some of those options because we saw some beautiful places, but getting from the airport there was [not possible].

Some people specified that they wanted:

  • The event to be outdoors or to have a wellness balance
  • Someplace warm
  • To have transport and meals included

Creating a space for networking

Killin’ It Camp in 2019 had pop-up events, where people with skills just launched a little event on any given day and invited people to join them.

In 2022, this same principle will be enacted to facilitate a space of genuine curiosity, skill-learning, and networking.

I love the discussions around, “Yes, I have my private practice and I’m really good at filling my niche, but how do I take that to a broader audience beyond private practice?” (Joe Sanok)

What can you test that could take you beyond your private practice?

Rebecca’s advice to private practitioners

Everything is doable. Remember that! Start doing it, especially when you feel nervous.

Useful Links mentioned in this episode:

Check out these additional resources:

Meet Joe Sanok

A photo of Joe Sanok is displayed. Joe, private practice consultant, offers helpful advice for group practice owners to grow their private practice. His therapist podcast, Practice of the Practice, offers this advice.

Joe Sanok helps counselors to create thriving practices that are the envy of other counselors. He has helped counselors to grow their businesses by 50-500% and is proud of all the private practice owners that are growing their income, influence, and impact on the world. Click here to explore consulting with Joe.

Thanks For Listening!

Feel free to leave a comment below or share this podcast on social media by clicking on one of the social media links below! Alternatively, leave a review on iTunes and subscribe!

Podcast Transcription

[JOE SANOK] This is the Practice of the Practice Podcast with Joe Sanok, session number 776. I’m Joe Sanok, your host, and welcome to the Practice of the Practice Podcast. We have a unique episode today. We’re going to be talking all about Killin’It Camp, the event that we are putting on October 20th through 23rd in Cancun, Mexico. We have Rebecca Sidoti with us today, who is our conference planner. She’s a private practitioner in New Jersey, and she has Mind by Design, which is her private practice. We’re going to just be chatting about the process of setting up this conference, why we’ve done what we’ve done in regards to thinking about it, and hopefully you’re going to join us. Rebecca, welcome to the Practice of Practice podcast. [REBECCA SIDOTI] Hi, Joe. Thanks so much for having me. [JOE] Yes, this is so awesome. We’ve been planning this for a number of months and now to be really kicking it off for people and telling them about it is really exciting. [REBECCA] Yes, definitely. I’m excited to talk about it and even answer some of the questions I think that some of the guests might have. [JOE] Well, why don’t we just start with, tell us about your private practice and then we’ll dive into why Killin’It Camp was something you wanted to help out with? [REBECCA] Sure. So my private practice is in New Jersey. It is myself and a recent new hire, so it went from one to two. I specialize in treating OCD anxiety and phobias and the woman that will be working with me, she specializes in grief trauma and loss. So we’re, she was actually one of my interns many moons ago and I’ve kept in touch with her. So it’s really exciting as far as deciding to help out with Killin’It Camp. So two reasons, I like to organize things. That’s just something that I felt like, oh, I could help out. I could maybe put these skills to use, but also because part of my, maybe a little bit of a longer-term goal is to have some wellness retreats for, whether it be for clients or for business owners. Those details aren’t really hashed out, but the benefit of wellness retreats was something that I just, I really wanted to dig into more. Then as you and I got talking and we were really excited, I mean, we were just finding places all over the globe that were awesome and we’ll get into that a little bit too, of how we narrowed it down to Cancun. [JOE] Yes, yes. Well, and I think that now, maybe not more than ever, there’s been lots of times in history when people have been stressed, but for our generation in the couple years past the 2020 pandemic and with so much going on and so much pressure, and even just as I talk to therapists throughout this whole series, they’re stressed out they’re dealing with a lot of stuff. They have a lot of vicarious trauma and especially trying to do therapy during the pandemic when you’re trying to just keep your own family or your own life going, and then you have to support other people. I mean, that’s a lot for therapists to hold as a container for other people’s stuff. For you, just personally during the pandemic, how did therapy look for you in doing therapy with people? What was tough for you? How did you get through all that? [REBECCA] Well, I was in the middle of a job change right when the pandemic hit which was actually just, it worked out very well. I just got lucky. I had joined a group practice and so I was working with them, but they were also in this big transition to telehealth. So telehealth, it was, and what I was seeing, being an OCD and anxiety and phobia specialist was really a more difficult time with actually implementing some of those interventions that can be quite hands-on, whether it’s exposure therapy or mindfulness practice. So what I did was I just started researching other ways for engagement when trying to do ERP or trying to do mindfulness. I stumbled upon virtual reality therapy, which has now been my meat and potatoes, doing VRT. It was a lot of just going with the flow and trying to be open to like, what the heck am I doing? And hopefully this works, and it has, and it’s stuck even though we can be back in-person and all those things. Many of my clients are like, well, I don’t really have to. So we just have stuck with it. [JOE] Yes, I just am so intrigued by VR therapy, like that just, I feel like is going to be such an interesting thing as that emerges and as the technology emerges and there’s just so many different applications there that, I think we could spend the whole episode talking about that. [REBECCA] We could, I could totally nerd out. I could put my headset on right now, just like show you, it is really, really incredible. Seeing the results has just been such a confidence boost for myself, but also just I think for the field. [JOE] Will you bring your headset to Killin’It Camp so I can test it out? [REBECCA] Oh my gosh, that’s actually great. [JOE] Let’s do it. Oh, let’s do it. So virtual reality therapy training at Killin’It Camp right now. We just decided that. [REBECCA] Oh my gosh, that would actually be really, I have a lot of people, like when we’re in the small groups, they’ll message me and be like, wait, can you tell me a little bit about that? I’m like, absolutely. I love talking about it. [JOE] Well, okay, so let’s go back to, so you reach out to me and say, “Hey I’d love to help out with Killin’It Camp.” Then we start brainstorming about what we wanted and what would be different from 2019, what would be similar, what were the basics? We had done a bunch of research in regards to just reaching out to past people that came to the online one as well as ones that came to the in-person one and a few guiding things that I knew that people wanted, it was in-person this year. Assuming that there was nothing that from a Covid or pandemic standpoint that would limit that, they wanted community, they wanted connections and they didn’t want it to be like a regular conference. People, I’ve found are just sick of flying somewhere and then just sitting in a room and being stuck in a room and never really going outside, which I’m with you. I like nature, I like being outside, I like doing activities and I feel like the best times that I have at a conference is usually after the breakout sessions when you go grab drinks with someone or you’re sitting poolside. You’re just getting to know other people. That’s where we had started with just some of the core concepts. Now for you, what was exciting at the beginning as we were brainstorming what Killin’It Camp could be? [REBECCA] Well, I think knowing that there was flexibility and also this similar view of breaking away from just what would be like a corporate type of conference in a big hotel and just eight hours in a room or scattering around rooms and eating at your desk type of thing. We talked so much in our small groups and, I’m part of Next Level Practice and it’s talking a lot about breaking away from why we don’t work in corporate America really anymore and why we have transition and we’re trying to make it our own. So when we were talking and you had told me about the feedback from the guests from past Killin’It Camps and we put out some, like a survey to get some information for what people were looking for, they were also in that same boat of like, we left corporate America for a reason. We don’t want to sit in eight-hour meetings, or we want to be able to engage with each other organically while learning and getting information that really does help promote our growth, but can we not sit in a U-shape table and stare at each other. Then it was just picking out geographically what that looks like. That is also, I guess was part of the process to stay local or to branch out, which I guess I never even heard from you, like what your thoughts. We were just spewing ideas, but what brought you to say like, ah, we could actually venture out? [JOE] Initially we had Killin’It Camp at the YMCA, the Rockies in Colorado. I think they had a lot of really great things about it. It was secluded because Estes Park is a good hour and a half from Denver. There were a lot of logistical things like making sure people knew how to get from the airport up there because they’re not all going to rent a car. The YMCA is a non-profit and so a lot of their systems are much different than maybe a for-profit hotel. So even just being able to nail down what dates were open and when it was working, they mostly have youth groups or cross-country teams that are coming up there or different smaller groups. So I think in looking at, well, how can we make this as easy as possible on ourselves, that was part of it. Also, when we started to look outside of the US to see what we could get for almost the same price point as the YMCA at the Rockies. You and I, we are running some numbers in regards to like our top three places and seeing okay if we added flights and hotels and food and all this in there, Cancun was actually going to be cheaper for people than going to Colorado. We honestly had probably a good third of the people for the YMCA of the Rockies say that the food wasn’t that great it’s like a BB plus and that it snowed when we were there. So there was some older people that we had to walk. It wasn’t a long walk. It was maybe, I don’t know, a hundred yards from where we were actually doing the conference to where we would eat, but it was icy. It was dangerous and just it wasn’t what a lot of, especially the city folk thought of when they thought about going away for a conference. So, sure we called it Killin’It camp and it was going to be rustic and anyone that’s followed my work knows that it’s probably not going to be your normal or average, but it was worth trying something new. So I was totally up for going someplace warm. I have enough snow in northern Michigan, like 10 months a year, so someplace warm sounded pretty fun also. [REBECCA] Yes, absolutely. I think there was a consensus even when we sent out the survey. Everybody wanted outdoors and I think that speaks to pandemic, like we’re all still recovering, like we just want to get out but also that balance, like there’s a wellness balance where it’s like breaking away from just that routine. And Colorado is a wonderful place to do that, but might not want to be cold and that might not want to be icy. We got some pretty high feedback that it was like warm, we want warm, we don’t want to have to bundle up and warm and easy. I think that was the other thing too of just like, make it easy, make the meals involved, get us from the airport. We don’t want to have to like think about all these other logistics. And that also helped narrow down some of those options because we saw some beautiful places but getting from the airport there, it was like — [JOE] Oh, one that was beautiful, but it was like, it was what, three-hour drive from the airport. Once you were there, they had good food but they didn’t, I mean I think they had massages in a couple things, but when we looked at the actual activities, it was more limited. [LEVEL UP WEEK] I think it’s time that we speak about you and your goals for a minute. Hear me out. For a while now, we’ve been speaking about, about how to market your practice, how to grow your practice, and how to be a better boss and encourage a company culture but isn’t it time to start making it happen? I’m serious, I’m challenging you to just do it. Take that leap of faith, put yourself out there and level up in your practice. Think about it. You’re probably entering that phase where you start to set yourself up for 2023. You’re thinking about what your goals are going to be, what you’re not going to do and what you hope to achieve. But regardless of where you are within your private practice journey, I’m challenging you to make these last few months count to dig deep, to make next year the one for big changes within your business and more importantly within yourself. If you’ve been looking for a sign to either start your own private practice, grow from solo to group, or become a next level group practice boss, this is it. You’re certainly not alone because Practice of the Practice is doing something we’ve never done before. We’re so convinced that now is the time for you to grow, that we’re dedicating all our resources to help you do it. We’re all in every single one of us and we’re inviting you to go all in and level up. From September 12th to September 15th, we’ll be running level up week to help you decide what will work best for you in your private practice journey. There will be webinars, Q&As with experts and a chance for you to meet your accountability partners, facilitators, and community. If you’re ready to make a change and level up register at practiceofthepractice.com/levelup and follow our Facebook and Instagram pages at Practice of the Practice for live updates and event details. Lastly, before I jump back into this episode, I just want to say that I really hope to see you there, even if it’s just online. Remember that leveling up week isn’t about us. It’s not about me or about Practice of the Practice. It’s all about you and growing your practice, whether it be your first solo practice or growing you from group practice boss to reaching a national audience. Make September, 2022, the month that you start your journey and level up. [JOE] So we landed on the Club Med in Cancun. Let’s first talk activities, like you’ve been behind the scenes way, I don’t even know all the things that we can do there. You’re mentioning wellness. What things are we going to be able to do while we’re at the Club Med? [REBECCA] Sure. So this hotel, this hit our top list because of their wellness approach in a lot of, in a couple different ways. They have daily morning yoga, meditation, and mindfulness right on the beach. They have different wellness groups like workouts and things like that, but you can do it as part of the group and you also have the option of just using any of those facilities or whatever it might be, so even if we had our own breakout group or something like that can be done if somebody’s teaching mindfulness to practitioners who want to learn it. All is available and so they also really highly promote like at your pace. So even though there are times and structures to the groups and you’re welcome to join, it’s also available to you when it works for you. They are, it’s a family friendly resort, not just like kids are welcome. They have child free childcare for kids ages 4 to 11 or yes, 4 to 11 where it’s very structured events. The parents get like the itinerary of where their kids are going to be. There’s like the trapeze for the kids, they can go sailing, they have a one-to-one babysitter, mentor who helps them throughout the day. It helps too with that balance knowing like if you are bringing family, you can confidently participate in Killin’It Camp activities while the kids are doing what they’re doing. So it really promotes that work life balance. It’s promoting wellness and those other ways. Then the food like, that was a big thing, of a lot of feedback we heard from the guests was food. So they have, you can have your own individualized plan. When you arrive, the chef actually talks to the guests and gets an idea of what they’re looking for. We had a couple people say they’re gluten free, dairy free, keto vegan. When I reached out to hotels, they were like, yes, we have one meal plan and that’s it. So that was concerning and really just crossed them off the list. When we spoke with Club Med, they were like, oh yes, the chef’s actually very involved because of course part of our wellness is to make sure people are eating the food that makes them feel good. So everybody will get a chance to meet with the chef if they have any dietary needs or restrictions or wants or desires. Then the general vacation perk, which is like all-inclusive food and drinks all day, so you can eat when you want, drink when you want. It’s all there and it’s available. The restaurants are just like gorgeous. The lounge areas that we are going to likely be using for a lot of our breakout groups and things like that are really, really comfortable. There’s private parts of the island that Killin’It Camp is going to be granted some access to so that if we want to have like a less formal but more focused group, we can have that privacy. It really just had so many things that promoted the work life balance and getting away from our offices, our computer screens and things like that. [JOE] Yes, well and to really create that structure for people to open up to those activities and to that connection. So each morning we’ll have a kickoff for about 90 minutes where we all come together. We’ll also share where people are going to be, where they’re going to be talking and then also an afternoon before dinner, come-together also. That time between, for me really facilitating where those conversations happening, where are those trainings happening in location and in topic. So we have a bunch of great people that we’re listing out over at killingitcamp.com in regards to speakers that we’ve already engaged that we’ll be sharing and speaking and doing breakouts or large group session meetings. But then also what we did at the 2019 Killin’It Camp was called popup events. So similar to when you’re at a music festival, sure there’s the things that are on this main stage, but there’s also some dude host hosting a drum circle and there’s someone hosting a painting thing. That same sort of idea of you may have an idea as you talk to people and say I want to dig into SEO or I want to dig into cash-pay clients to have a process of where you let us know I’m going to be hosting this over in this space and we’ve already got five people that are going to be having this conversation, come join us. And having that ongoing developing schedule is really important to me and to us because that’s where the magic happens, where it’s, oh, I didn’t realize I wanted to learn this and these people are here that know this. Let’s create an event right now instead of some big process of breakout session application that happened nine months ago. To me I think that’s going to be the magic of it being this unique one-time event where people come together, we have some structure to it, but we also have some things that happen that we don’t expect. [REBECCA] Absolutely. That’s, I think part of everybody networking in that organic way, is knowing what is important for everybody to learn or talk about or help each other out with is going to happen because we’re sharing it it’s not just structured and we’re sitting through any programming that maybe isn’t relevant. So that’s really, really good. I did have a question about some of the programming. I know we’ve been talking and it’s quite possible we’ve had this through an email, but in regards to the speakers, so how are you choosing who is maybe like most fitting for this, for Killin’It Camp this year? [JOE] Thus far it’s been people that I’ve hand selected. In the past one critique that we’ve had both with our online and our in-person was how white our group was. Not that I just am looking at, I want diversity in thought, in experience, in life. So really, with the podcast I’ve met some amazing people that I’ve directly reached out to that I think really bring a culturally competent perspective to what we’re working on. That was one factor, for sure, of elevating voices that maybe aren’t always elevated, that aren’t just the ones that are in every single consulting circle. In the past a lot of my consulting friends or people like that are people I’ve invited in this time. It’s definitely people that are doing amazing work that I’ve got to know through the podcast that I’ve specifically invited. We haven’t done a speaker application but I do think that that could be something that we do at some point in the coming weeks in the lead up for some extra speakers just to get people there that we want to have speaking and to hang out with us. But I would say for the most part it’s been people that I’ve interviewed on the podcast that I specifically asked, and now that I have that core group, then we can go out a little bit more and have other people that will host popup events. [REBECCA] Oh, that’s awesome. Are there any popup events that you’re thinking about or brainstorming about that we might say? [JOE] Yes, Dana Carretta-Stein is someone that I interviewed for the podcast that also came to the first Slow Down School and to see what she’s done with Instagram over the last couple years. She’s the_EMDR_coach on Instagram and to really just see how she’s using reels and other things, I’m super excited about her. And she’s super practical, so to just sit down and like actually do a reel and walk through it. Sometimes that technology is so hard to learn something new and it’s just like, here’s exactly how you do it. So I think Dana’s someone. There’s a couple other people that are bringing some unique perspectives in regards to how they run private practice. For pop-up events, for me, I think I personally love the discussions around, yes, I am my private practice and I’m really good at filling my niche, whatever that is, but how do I take that to a broader audience beyond just private practice, even if maybe you don’t want to launch a podcast or anything like that to just say like, what would be a test you could do to go beyond just your private practice? I mean, that’s the stuff that lights me up to help people go national with things but I’m sure that you or other people have other ideas as well. [REBECCA] I think many guests are going to be very much aligned with that collaborative approach, because I think that’s what draws a lot of us to Practice of the Practice and Killin’It Camp, is that it’s a very open dialogue where our individual needs for our business or for ourselves or professional development is addressed and things grow from that. I think that’s really translating the Killin’It Camp too, so that’ll be really exciting to see. [JOE] Yes. Well, let’s talk about the money side of it for people. So throughout the month of August, you can get a $97 volunteer tickets. You can volunteer for four hours, helping us just keep things running, helping Rebecca do that, and Claire, our volunteer coordinator. Then it’s $197 throughout August, and then it goes up to $297 September 1st. So other than that, what other costs should they expect in regards to cost of the room, obviously, their airplane ticket, wherever they’re from, but talk about maybe cost of the room and transportation from the airport so people just have a general idea of how much it’s going to cost. [REBECCA] Absolutely. We were able to work out two separate plans. If you’re coming just alone, getting a single room, that is $240 a night for the room. You’ll see actually what, before I even get into that, Jess had sent out an email that has the calculator in it, which I feel like the next Steve Jobs after I was able to make a calculator in Excel. Anybody can use that to calculate exactly what the cost is before you go ahead to make any payment. But basically, it’s $240 a night for a single person. The roundtrip airport transportation is a flat fee of $30 for each guest. What’s called the membership fee is what’s getting us all those perks, the different activities, the food, the drinks and the space to hold these different events, the little private section of the island, which I hope to get more information about, and I’ll definitely share as soon as I know. That membership fee is $60 per person flat rate. For a double room it’s $200 a night per person, and then you can select if it’s a king-size bed or two twin-size beds. That has the same thing, the airport transportation fee and the membership fee. The price for children and teenagers is quite a bit lower. That information’s out there. Do you want me to pull that up? I can grab that. [JOE] No, I mean, I think it was like between $100 and $150 a night or something like that. So really, I mean, if you’re doing double occupancy, $200 a night per person, single, it’s $240-ish plus a couple of those fees to get to and from the airport and then that resort fee. So it’s super reasonable prices. We would love for you to head on over to Killin’It Camp to read more, to see our current speakers on there. Yes, I mean, I’m just excited about getting a group of people together to talk private practice and to go deeper with each other. Rebecca, one question I always ask is if every private practitioner in the world were listening right now, what would you want them to know? [REBECCA] I think I would want them to know that everything is doable. Everything is doable and I’ve learned that by thinking things were not doable until I started doing so. If anybody’s got great ideas or things are saying, oh, that might be too much or too crazy, it’s not and maybe even having a cohort to work with that always feels really good. So it’s all doable. [JOE] So awesome. Well, thank you so much for being on the Practice of the Practice podcast today. [REBECCA] Absolutely. Thanks for having me. I’m so excited for October. [JOE] Well, if you want to join us for Killin’It Camp 2022, it’s going to be October 20th through 23rd in Cancun, Mexico at the Club Med. You can grab your ticket, your volunteer ticket, or your regular ticket over at killinitcamp.com. That’s Killin’It, Killing, drop the G, so killinitcamp.com. I’m so excited about Level Up Week that is coming up on September 12th, 2022. It’s right around the corner. Make sure you sign up over at practiceofthepractice.com/levelup. If you are brand new and starting a solo practice, we have webinars for you that week. If you have a solo practice that’s going really well and you’re ready to add someone, we have webinars for you. If you have a growing group practice, we have webinars for you. If you’re ready to level up beyond group practice, we have webinars for you. From that, starting a practice all the way through, maybe exiting it, we have webinars all that week for you, and we’re adding more every single day. Make sure you sign up over at practiceofthepractice.com/levelup. Thank you so much for letting me into your ears and into your brain. Have a great day. I’ll talk to you soon. Bye. Special thanks to the band Silence is Sexy for that intro music, and this podcast is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is given with the understanding that neither the host, the producers, the publishers or guests are rendering legal, accounting, clinical, or other professional information. If you want a professional, you should find one.

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