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About "Getting to the heart of the matter" retreat.

Getting to the heart of the Matter is a relationship retreat open to ANY intimate couple.

Whether in an intimate relationship or not, we have all been hurt in connection with others and we all have healing to do. The more we protect ourselves from further hurt, the less we can receive the love that is available. 

In a safe and relaxed environment, this retreat will offer time and space to explore the U-turn question "who am I in relationship?"

There will be presentations, group experiential exercises: done individually or with your partner, and group discussions. Facilitators are present but not intrusive. 

The retreat will offer opportunities to explore:

  • The energetic connection between your mind and heart.

  • Protective impulses that keep you from the connection you want.

  • Basic human needs for contact, love and safety.

  • Tools for regulating the body and mind.

  • How learning to change your conversations will change your relationships, inside and out.

Experiences include: 


- Meditation, 
- Movement
- Time in nature
- Self-reflection
- Journaling
- Sharing and experimenting with new behaviour
- Laughter and play


For more about Toni Herbine-Blank, check out her website at

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Retreat Leader
Toni Herbine-Blank

Toni Herbine-Blank MS RN is a senior trainer for The Centre for Self Leadership. Her expertise is in the use of IFS with couples and has developed trainings and retreats presenting these nationally and internationally. She is an experienced group leader with a reputation for being compassionate and empowering. 


Shelley Hartz

Shelley Hartz, RN, MSN, CS is a psychotherapist in private practice in Littleton, MA. Her practice of IFS over the past 15 years includes assisting with many IFS and IFIO trainings. She also co-facilitated the IFS Women's Retreats. Shelley's passion for healing and self-nourishment draw on the support of the natural world, music, play and the capacity of the human heart to love. 

What the couples from our previous retreat had to say

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Our retreat experience was outstanding! Ciara from Souliology was masterful at taking care of the details so that the group could be fully present with the content. Toni, the retreat leader, was so excellent, I really don't have good enough words to describe. Far above and beyond our expectations, and we came away deeply nourished and enriched. Simply wonderful! - Eleanor, Seattle, WA, USA

Souliology - You did a great job putting together this retreat and then taking such good care of all of us. You made me in particular feel very comfortable and glad to be part of this experience. A heartfelt thank you!

What a wonderful experience for my spouse and I to be in retreat with Souliology. The space created was lovely and the healing between us was tender, authentic and deeply meaningful. Thank you Toni for offering us your IFIO teachings that supported our journey along the way. This was a wonderful way to bring my spouse into the IFS community :-) 

We greatly appreciated all the time, attention and care Souliology put into the retreat and helping us get a taste of Ireland. And the workshop with Toni Herbine-Blank was incredibly rich and moving - we thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

This was a wonderful, deepening experience and it helped us tune in to each other and listen in a different way. Slowing down, getting away and investing this time in each other is priceless!!! Highly recommend! Faye & Nate ~ Hawaii, USA

Retreat Particulars

Please be advised that this is not a formal training about couples therapy and is not intended as a training on how to guide this work for other people. This is strictly a retreat for your personal growth and well-being.


The retreat will take place over 5 days starting on Monday evening, May 5th, 2025 and concluding Saturday morning May 10th after our morning session. 

Retreat cost: €4500 PER COUPLE

The retreat cost includes the retreat itself with Toni Herbine Blank, 5 nights ensuite accommodation in a beautiful beachside hotel in a charming fishing town in Portugal and 3 delicious meals a day Tuesday - Friday. An evening meal is included on Monday night, the first night of the retreat and a full breakfast is included on Saturday morning, the last morning of the retreat. The retreat cost assumes couples will be sharing the same room. If separate rooms are required, you will need to pay an additional charge for a separate room. Please advise on the registration form.

There is an afternoon off on Thursday, May 8th, 2025 to allow participants to process, rest and relax in the leisure centre, explore the local town or for those who seek a little bit of adventure, venturing into Lisbon City for the afternoon. 

This retreat is limited to 18 couples. If you are interested in participating, please register your interest. You will then be directed automatically to a registration form for completion. Only applicants who complete a full registration form will be considered for this retreat. Once your registration is approved we will advise you formally and it is only at this point that we will request a €1500 non-refundable deposit to reserve your place. We require a minimum of 16 couples for this retreat to proceed so please do not make travel arrangements to the retreat venue until you have been formally advised in writing that the workshop is proceeding. Thank you.

Any travel costs to the retreat location in Portugal, is the sole responsibility of the participants.

Please note that this retreat is currently planned as an in-person program. Any changes due to COVID-19 restrictions or any other global emergency will be posted here as soon as they become available and you will be notified by email for those registered. 

IMPORTANT: Please read our FAQS page on this website for further guidelines and general information which you may find useful. If after reading the FAQS page you have any further questions, please feel free to email us at

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