The Weary Human's Guide to Getting Unstuck and Reclaiming Your Path to Joy
by Rachel Macy Stafford
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Pub Date 28 Mar 2023 | Archive Date 29 Mar 2023
Sounds True Publishing, Sounds True
Reclaim Joy, Inner Freedom, and Zest for Life.
How often do you feel joy—a truly pure, unadulterated experience of ease, bliss, and happiness? In childhood, our joy arises in the moment, spontaneous and free. But as we become adults, we’re faced with the pressure of increased responsibilities, endless demands, and a barrage of breaking news. And along the way, we forget how to be present in our own lives.
In Soul Shift, Rachel Macy Stafford offers us a practical, inclusive guide to navigating a culture of distraction and depletion to find our way back to what delights our heart, makes us feel alive, and brings us peace. She illuminates how to embody the practice of presence, where we return home to our authentic selves and the joy found only in the here and now.
Like a wise, empathetic friend, Stafford accompanies you on a wondrous exploration of self-discovery. She walks you through a symbolic botanical garden made up of eight areas designed to help you practice: presence, worthiness, letting go of perfection, self-kindness, authenticity, forgiveness, looking after yourself, and cultivating your gifts.
Soul Shift helps you rediscover the joy inside you at a pace that is natural, with an approach that is gentle and practical exercises that are easy to follow. Here, you will learn how to:
• Release external measurements of success so you can focus on what matters
• Respond to life’s challenges with awareness and compassion
• Realign with your heart and the calm presence within
• Create a framework to center you when life steers you off course
• Experience the healing power of presence for yourself and with the ones you love
In practicing this work, “our innermost truths come to the surface,” Stafford writes. “Barriers crumble, the past loses its grip, and we are finally free to show up as our fully human selves and make our unique contributions to the world.”
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 13 members
I've been eagerly keeping an eye out for examples of my favourite non-fiction writers reflecting on their experiences and growth during quarantine and the COVID pandemic. Rachel Macy Stafford writes from the perspective of a loving mother grappling with distraction and overwhelm, and I always find her work intensely relatable because she has such high aspirations, while always remaining humble enough to recognise her own mistakes and stumbling blocks. While sharing her vulnerabilities so openly, she writes with beautiful ease and poetic charm. Like the best children's stories, her work is easy to read yet the simple format disguises the rich, complex life lessons on the page. The author uses the extended metaphor of a garden to explore the Soul Shift universe, and in much the same way as a garden through the seasons, I felt the bloom of life and the encouragement to rest.
If you enjoyed any of the author's previous work, you will love Soul Shift. If you enjoy reflective self-help that feels like a conversation with a loving friend or a kind teacher, this is the book for you. If you don't enjoy examples driven by the author's own family life, or religious overtones, this probably isn't the book for you.
disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book from Sounds True Publishing via NetGalley and I am voluntarily leaving this honest review.
As a long time reader and fan of Rachel Macy Stafford I really enjoyed this upcoming release. Stafford has a way of relating to people in a very raw and real way, her vulnerability inspires ones own deep contemplation about life and all the contrasting and competing goals taking place in our days. Stafford doesn't claim to have all the answers, she offers her own hard won experience has a guiding insight to your own life. Thanks so much for an advanced copy of this book!
I heard about Soul Shift and Rachel Macy Stafford from the On Purpose podcast earlier this month. The subtitle “The weary human’s guide to getting unstuck and reclaiming your pathway to joy” was very intriguing. Soul Shift did not disappoint. It was a very honest and practical guide through a symbolic garden. Focusing on eight areas towards finding joy: presence, worthiness, letting go of perfectionism, self kindness, authenticity, forgiveness, self care, and cultivating your gifts.
Thank you Sounds True publishing and NetGalley for an advanced copy. All opinions are my own.