The past 700+ days have been one massive rollercoaster.
Some of the change has been good. Some, well, let's just say it's tapped into an area we don't often explore, our soul...
✅ Our thoughts (and even our mindset)
✅ Our feelings (and how we express them via our emotions-- and whether we respond in healthy ways or over-react in unhealthy ones)
✅ Our will (including our desire to push forward or just settle back in despair)
We talk a lot about our bodies (physical health) and even faith (spiritual health). But, we often forget that this area is just as important, as the soul is our primary connector to the world in which we live!
We each have an “outer person” and an “inner person.” In some sense, we realize this.
But, most of us don’t realize we are comprised of a body, a soul, and a spirit— and that the soul and the spirit are two different entities. That is, the “inner person” can be subdivided even more.
We intuitively understand that in order to be healthy we must take care of our bodies. That’s a given. But we’ve also got to take care of both aspects of the “inner person.”
We often confuse “soul” and “spirit” as the same. Again, they are different.
Whereas the spirit is quiet, steady, and humble, the soul can become aggressive, outraged, and opinionated. Quickly. In other words, the soul is the internal part of us that’s still “in process.”
In part 1, Mind Shift, we’ll discuss some foundational issues related to soul wholeness. Specifically, we’ll talk about the importance of feelings— of embracing both the “good ones” and the “bad ones” and exploring how to read what they say to us. In doing so, we learn to let our feelings serve us rather than being hijacked by them.
Face it. Emotions are a big deal. Really big.
The problem is that we talk very little about them. And, we rarely train ourselves to leverage our emotions for our benefit and for the good of others.
👉 how to recognize your feelings (and, you’ll discover that there aren’t “good” feelings and “bad” feelings, just healthy and unhealthy expressions of them)
👉 how to read what your feelings communicate to you (they always tell you something about the situation)
👉 how to respond— without reacting— in a healthy way (for your own well-being and the betterment of others)
In part 2, Look Back, we’ll talk about the importance of dealing with past hurts, habits, and hang-ups. We don't want to dwell in the past— or dwell on it— but we do want to deal with anything which needs to be handled so we don’t continue replicating any bad patterns we can avoid.
You’ll only be as free in the present as the past you’re willing to confront, so we’ll jump right in and discuss ideas like:
✅ Post Traumatic Stress
✅ Triggers (and how to re-direct them)
✅ The fact that the past “rules” and “responses” you’ve created might have served you well— in one season— yet may need to adjust for the next
✅ How to “re-train” your brain to see things differently (often, the unhealthy comes in responding to the present as if it’s the past)
In part 3, Live Present, we'll discuss the value of being “all in” wherever you are. We’ll take an honest look at the importance of slowing down, and we’ll acquire some simple tools to walk in soul wholeness.
A few concepts we’ll explore…
🔥 In the same way we pause when we encounter physical pain, we should also stop when we experience emotional pain. This requires us to recognize that some wounds and scars aren’t visible— they’re invisible. Even though they remain unseen, they’re just as real.
🔥 Sometimes healing happens instantly. Other times, it comes as we choose to live well, with intention, over time. This is true in the realm of physical health, as well as mental and emotional health.
🔥 Restoration isn’t always a return to how things were. Many times it’s a move forward to how things should be. That often means “different” and “better” than you originally experienced.
In part 4, Lean Forward, we’ll tackle the topic of identity. You see, if we’re not confident in who we are as God’s children, if our value isn’t determined intrinsically from who He declares we are, then we’ll search for validation through externals. That is always a soul-wrenching, losing proposition.
❌ When life doesn’t go as planned, we begin doubting the reason— or merit— of our own existence.
❌ Furthermore, even when we “win,” we lose. Achievement always leave us empty and searching for more— unless our identity already stands secure.
Many of the issues which wreck our souls have to do with our identity— of seeking to “fill” something in ourselves. When we get this issue right, we can live from a place of overflow rather than position of constant striving.
⭐️ Goals and achievement look beautiful when pursued in the right way.
Whereas part 1 and part 2 of the book deal with self-awareness, part 5 addresses self-leadership…
❌ Our aim is not to silence the soul or squelch our desire to achieve.
✅ Rather, we want to leverage the gift of the soul— our minds, our will, our emotions— in healthy way, channeling them for our good and the betterment of others.
In part 5, Lead Whole, we’ll review several foundational concepts which encourage, equip, and empower us towards that end…
Dealing with my personal issues can be like playing whaca-mole— or whatever you call that game they have at Chuck-E-Cheese. Maybe you’ve experienced it.
You think, “Gee. Could we just have ONE season of life where we’re not dealing with SOMETHING?!”.
Maybe we can, maybe we can’t.
But… and this one’s huge…
Most of the stuff we see is a result of the stuff we don’t see. The inside.
It’s easy to look at the “bad fruit” in our lives, pluck it, chunk it, and move on. When we take that approach, though, we never get to the root of the problem, so the issues always re-surface.
When we deal with the truly DEEP work, the stuff under the surface… the work that takes time and effort and patience and cultivation… when we garden the soul, the transformation can occur.
It’s easy to gaze at the things we don’t want. Things like illness. Or financial lack. Or lack of purpose and identity and strife and emotional volatility. It’s easy to think, “Get rid of it! Smash it!”.
True fruit emerges from deep roots. Healthy roots.
Garden your soul. Go deep. Dig. Transform… and the fruit will come naturally as an overflow of what’s happening inside of you.
In this course we’ll show you that we each have the ability to stand “outside ourselves” and assess what’s happening in real time. If we don’t like the story we’re living, we can learn from the past. Rather than living from “rules” which haven’t served us well (or might have served us during a previous season of life), we can craft better responses for the future.
The book is 5.5x8.5, and has 474 pages.
With lots of pictures and graphics (80+), it's still a quick read.
The audiobook is the complete book- read by Andy. You can purchase it here.
The files can be downloaded to your devices and/or you can also stream them from this site.
The complete eBook (full-color, PDF) comes with the audiobook.
No matter how great things are going OR how bad they are, you're more the the sum of all your highest highs and certainly more valuable than the sum of all the deepest lows...
⭐️ we aren’t the value of our achievements.
⭐️ we aren’t the sum total of the cash in our bank, the appraisal number on our house, or the type of vehicle we drive.
⭐️ we aren’t the rank or title we’ve reached— or failed to reach.
Every situation... temporary. No matter how grand or how empty.
Our identity has been settled. You... are eternal. And full of glory. And ready to shine.
Maybe you’ve been through the grinder—
… the divorce, bankruptcy, foreclosure, ridiculed, shamed, questioned, doubted… OR even ALL of the above (or more)…
Where you are— in any of those cases— isn’t your identity. And, you’re free to move forward from those places to something much better.
Rome… might have fallen seemingly overnight (it didn’t), but there’s wide-spread agreement it wasn’t built in a day.
Neither is life.
The best things can’t be microwaved or short-ordered. The best stuff = slow-cooked. Over time.
And that’s why you have to go for progress, not perfection. That is, just moving a bit closer to your intended destination each day…
And it’s why you chart direction (as in, “am I moving in the right one?”)… not distance (“did I make it all the way?”— totally annoying when kids ask that in the car, right?, yet we crush ourselves with that question in life…).
Get up. And get going again. You’ve got it.
And, even if some of the closest people kicked you to the curb, there are strangers even cheering you from the sidelines, standing in your corner…