Soul Shift: The Weary Human's Guide to Getting Unstuck and Reclaiming Your Path to Joy
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.”
Praise for Soul Shift: The Weary Human's Guide to Getting Unstuck and Reclaiming Your Path to Joy
“Stafford shows refreshing vulnerability and skillfully locates meaning in the everyday.” —Publishers Weekly
“As we face more and more demands for our time and attention, it’s easy to be distracted from what we value most in our lives. In many ways, we’ve become disconnected from what gives us joy. With Soul Shift, Rachel Macy Stafford has created a hope-filled path to help us rediscover what it means to truly thrive.” —Arianna Huffington, founder and CEO, Thrive Global
“Reading this miraculous Soul Shift book by Rachel Macy Stafford will plant a loving new voice in your head and cause your heart to mightily expand through the guided processes in the pages. These guided processes will literally lift and reshape your soul.” —SARK, succulent wild woman, PlanetSARK.com
“Rachel Macy Stafford is, above all else, a spiritual guide and a compassionate healer. Her books are the kind that take people by the hand, and Soul Shift is no different. Indeed, it is a guide for all of us, and if we take Rachel’s hand and let her lead the way, we will find transformation on the other side as we enter into her stories and experiences, carefully curated for us to find healing in ourselves and in the world. This book is a safe place to pause, assess, and enter into care for ourselves and one another, making room for the soul shift we so desperately need.” —Kaitlin Curtice, award-winning author of Native and Living Resistance
“Rachel Macy Stafford is not only an incredible person and gifted storyteller, she is unapologetically honest about things that most people hide. That is what makes her writing so powerful and life-changing. Soul Shift is filled with practical takeaways from a self-help perspective, but it doesn’t read like one. It’s a book that offers guidance without saying where you ‘should’ be. Read it. And start your journey of self-acceptance and relational healing.” —Joshua Becker, author of Things That Matter
“In Soul Shift, Rachel Macy Stafford shows she is a beautiful balance of inspirational writer and pragmatic teacher. Rachel does not lecture, shame, or claim to know all the answers; she accompanies readers on a unique journey of self-discovery. Page by page, we learn how to reclaim our uninhibited, carefree, curious childhood selves so we can remember what brings us joy, peace, and fulfillment. Soul Shift is a trusted guide for weary humans everywhere.” —Shefali Tsabary, PhD, New York Times bestselling author and clinical psychologist
“Rachel Macy Stafford has the unique ability as a writer to invite you into a safe space that allows you to let down your guard and get curious. Through her combination of vulnerability and timeless wisdom, Rachel writes in a way that provides a respite, a retreat even, from the world. Soul Shift is a book you will want to revisit and an experience through which you will find yourself changed—an incredibly rare combination. The best teaching returns us to our own knowing, and Soul Shift reminds us of what has always been true. Rachel invites us to survey our lives in the way that only a truly safe person could—with the promise that we’re not alone and there’s hope for us in the process. Rachel is a guide whose hand you will be grateful to hold, and one who teaches you to lovingly trust and take your own. There is healing in these pages. As a practicing therapist, I’m always looking for books that can be companions for clients doing the brave and hard work of changing their lives. I know I’ll be reaching for Soul Shift regularly.” —Monica DiCristina, MA, LPC, therapist, author, podcast host
“Rachel Macy Stafford understands at her core that the love and patience we give ourselves can transform us from the inside out. Don’t just read Soul Shift, do Soul Shift. And as you do, listen to her words, receive her invitation to embrace courage, and open yourself up to the truths that rest inside of you.” —Krystle Cobran, diversity, equity, and inclusion executive and author of The Brave Educator
“Our culture is ripe with the stark messaging that the only way through life is either to toughen up or to lose ourselves in others altogether. But Rachel Macy Stafford invites us to a different path. With profound gentleness, Rachel invites us into the way of deep compassion and fierce kindness for not only others—but also for ourselves. I am thoroughly grateful for the invitation Soul Shift provides.” —Aundi Kolber, MA, LPC, therapist and author of Try Softer and Strong like Water
“Rachel Macy Stafford never fails to meet me where I am emotionally, offering novel, simple ways to think and feel about big emotions and life changes. Her perspective is a real gift, one I recommend enthusiastically and wholeheartedly.” —Jessica Lahey, New York Times bestselling author of The Gift of Failure and The Addiction Inoculation
“This book is a gem. Rachel’s focus on taking small, actionable steps to shift how you feel, how you think, and ultimately, the path you choose for yourself, is refreshing and practical, and she guides you along with such genuine warmth.” —Nataly Kogan, author of The Awesome Human Project
“Once again, Rachel has created a safe, inviting space for us to be where we are—a place where we can be seen and held with a softness that soothes the soul. Truly. Her honesty and generosity in paying forward what she’s learned along the way builds a bridge for us to meet [our] truest selves with the kindness and compassion we are worthy of—which for some of us, myself included, is a new skill. There’s a gentleness and ease inside her stories that allow the reader to really feel the shifts. Soul Shift offers us a roadmap to reflect and realign with what matters most, with steps that feel empowering.” —Samantha Arsenault Livingstone, OLY, MEd, Olympic gold medalist, high-performance consultant, mental health advocate
“With the pressure to live in a state of constant distraction, Rachel Macy Stafford’s invitation to stop missing our lives is vitally important. Soul Shift inspires us to reflect on how we spend our days and recognize the power of presence to help us authentically connect, listen, love, and heal. Read this book now. Thank me later.” —John O’Leary, bestselling author of On Fire and In Awe
“Life is endlessly shifting beneath our feet. The changes keep coming in waves, unending. The only unchanging thing is Love—our need of it, our desire for it, our capacity to give and receive it. In her newest book, Rachel Macy Stafford helps us make a crucial shift back towards the only thing that truly matters: tending the soul.” —Christina Crook, award-winning author of The Joy of Missing Out and Good Burdens
“Rachel Macy Stafford has a way of awakening us to things we need to change in our lives without making us feel guilt for the time we spent getting it wrong. This book propelled me to make real change once and for all. The way she urges us gently but urgently is an art form that only RMS can do! Soul Shift is thought-provoking and inspiring, unique and universal. I’m confident everyone who reads this book will begin treating themselves—and the world—with more kindness, compassion, and ease.” —Mallory Ervin, bestselling author of Living Fully
“If you are looking for the book equivalent of comfort food—with a gentle energy boost, a heavy dose of compassion, and zero guilt—Soul Shift is it!” —Samantha Ettus, bestselling author of The Pie Life