“I will let people down if I break down; rest is for the weak; there won’t be ‘enough’ if I don’t keep producing; I will somehow lose my creativity...
What's the One Thing You Can Do To Take Care of Your Soul?
Leaders ask me this regularly. At first I thought there was no simple answer. But I’ve found there really is a framework to move toward soul health.
“What’s the one thing I can do to take care of my soul?”
Leaders ask me this regularly. At first I thought there was no simple answer. But over time I’ve found there's a way that’s helpful for leaders to think about the one thing that they can do. And—it's actually three things.
This three-part framework is the one thing you can do: A page. A person. And a plan.
What these things are doing for you are hitting three vital dimensions of your neuroscience, the way your brain is created, and ways the Spirit moves into our souls in healing and formational ways—restoring your soul.
1. PAGE: An invitation to reflection 📔
What’s a page? A page is an invitation to reflection. This could be in the pages of a physical journal, or could be digital. But handwriting harnesses both sides of your brain, and it’s valuable to take the time to write down your thoughts.
Use these questions to jumpstart your reflections:
- Which part of the Page | Person | Plan framework is strongest for you at this time? Which one is least developed?
- What's a metaphor or an object that reflects how your soul is doing right now? A few examples are: Do you feel like parched soil? Are there cobwebs and dust where fresh breezes used to blow? Are you sensing yourself immersed in God, like swimming deep underwater?
- Ready for more? Download our free 21-Day Jumpstart to Journaling
2. PERSON : An invitation to connection 💬
The person is critical to your spiritual development. And that person is an invitation to connection. Again, so much of our understanding of the brain and how we are shaped and reshaped happens in the context of relationships.
It’s vital for you to have a safe, third space—a place that’s not your family, that's not your work. You need a place where you can be received and welcomed. The good, the bad, the ugly—the good days, the hard days, where you’re not performing. We all need a non-anxious presence, somebody who’s just with you and helping you learn to pay attention to the work of God in your life in this season.
- Set aside 20 minutes this week to have a conversation with a family member, friend, or neighbor and share what you've been learning about your Soul Health. Ask them about their Soul Health. Talk about this journey and your hopes, fears, excitement, or ambivalence about it.
- Learn more about Spiritual Direction and schedule a free discovery appointment
3. PLAN : An invitation to intention 🗓
Again, harnessing the way the mind works, your brain will organize around a point in the future that you've identified as important. Because of this, it's vital for you to have a plan to care for your soul.
The ancients talked about a rule of life, the regula, the same word that was used to describe a trellis. A trellis is just a structure to hold the growth. And that’s what a plan does. It allows you to set your intention. It doesn’t cause the growth, it’s not the same as the growth, but it helps hold structure for your growth.
One of the first steps in creating a Soul Care Plan is to create space in your life. You need to have a clear picture of your current reality in how you have allocated time and attention. Then you can move forward!
- Take a look at your next 6-8 weeks. On a blank sheet of paper, list out all the time commitments you have already made: meetings, events, holidays, activities, and work projects.
- Circle or highlight the Non-negotiable Commitments. Non-negotiable can be family dinners, date nights, fun, hobbies, and rest.
- Cross out all the commitments that were made due to: Insecurity, people pleasing, the desire to feel wanted or needed, “opportunistic” but not strategic, or you're just not sure why it’s there
- Want to keep going? Discover our Soul Care Plan, a digital interactive workbook that guides you on a prayerful journey to flourishing in every area of your life.
Not sure where to start?