The Magazine for spa and wellness in Mexico, the Caribbean and Latin America​

ISPA 2023 Conference Highlights

ISPA 2023

Patrick danced an energetic welcome around the conference hall to kick off day one of ISPA 2023, he then welcomed Lucas Irwin to the stage who guided the audience through a short meditation and intention-setting ritual for the days to come.

Patrick then honored Nerio Alessandri, of Technogym, with the ISPA Visionary Award, who spoke about lifestyle sustainability of wellness and dedicated the award to the Technogym team and to his family, saying, “Let’s move for a better world!”

The keynote speaker, Neil Pasricha, joined us to talk primarily about happiness. Traditionally, we are told to ‘work hard, achieve success and then, be happy!’ However, this model is reversed, happy people, do great work and then achieve success! Having gone through a divorce and the loss of his best friend to suicide, Neil was desperate to find a way to feel better, he started a blog called ‘1000 Awesome Things’, which eventually gained traffic and got published into; The Book of Awesome.

He then started to take a deeper look into happiness. Remove your phone from the side of your bed each night and find just two minutes each morning to ask yourself:

I will let go of…

I am grateful for…

I will focus on…

Can you also take two minutes in the afternoon to take a walk in nature, to be around trees?

If you can also find two minutes in your evening routine, read two pages of fiction. Reading fiction allows you to live many different lives, it builds empathy, compassion, and understanding, the most important leadership qualities.


Day two

Day two at ISPA welcomed Erica Dhawan, author of ‘Get Big Things Done’ and ‘The Power of Connectional Intelligence’. We need to consider not only, how do we adapt to our ‘new normal’, but how do we create a ‘better normal’.

Fascinated by body language and communication, Erica learned that communication starts with new shared experiences, involving physical experiences that involve our bodies. With that, she taught everyone a quick Bollywood dance and had the audience up and moving for a 2-minute dance party, shouldn’t every meeting start this way?

How do we connect intelligently? This is the capability to unlock value by fully maximizing the power of relationships.

Key principles
1. Choose clarity over brevity
2. ‘Communicate your mind’ mindset
3. Hold your horses
4. Assume the best intent
5. Find your voice

Introverts and extroverts communicate differently, sending questions ahead of time allows introverts to think and prepare their answers and contribute more. We all have digital body language styles, natives respond differently to adapters.

Four Laws:
1. Value visibly
– Show appreciation digitally when needed, identify what tasks should be done in person
2. Communicate carefully
– Maniacal clarity avoids miscommunication
3. Collaborate Confidently
– Think beyond each person’s titles, inform the right people
4. Trust totally
– Have courageous conversations, what was missed? Play devil’s advocate.

Visit hybridtoolkit.com for resources.


Day three

ISPA 2023 day three started with Patrick Huey asking us to appreciate all the people behind the scenes, the ones that make us look good! The success and demand that the spa industry is experiencing now, should be celebrated, even through the struggles with supply chain and staffing we have experienced.

Amongst the many awards, Four Seasons Punta Mita was awarded in the philanthropy category for their Yappy Wellness program, an activity for guests to enjoy rescue dogs.

Deborah Szekely, at 101 years young, presented the Alex Szekely humanitarian award to Ben Nemtin.

Ben asked us, “What do you want to do before you die”, when his team asked themselves this, with two rules: pretend you had 100 million in the bank and pretend you could do ANYTHING! They came up with ideas like – go to space, star in a movie… they went on a road trip. 1 question, 4 guys, 100 things to do before you die. They created a list of 100 things to do before you die and started ticking them off the list and helping others complete theirs.

The most difficult item on their list: play basketball with President Obama! They finally achieved that goal, proving that anyone can do anything. Despite the many times they were told no, they kept going until they received their yes! The Buried Life series has helped people overcome limiting beliefs and accept who they are at any point in their lives.

Visit www.bennemtin.com/toolkit for the mental health toolkit.

Five steps to achieve your bucket list
1. Write your list
2. Share your goals
3. Be unstoppable
4. Take moonshots
5. Give to others


By Sara Jones

Author: Fabiola