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An Interview with Renee Peterson Trudeau {Author of Nurturing the Soul of Your Family}

I had the opportunity to review the book Nurturing the Soul of Your Family by Renee Peterson Trudeau before its release last month and found that there was a lot of good insight there. For me, it affirmed my faith in God and got me thirsty to read more scripture, hearing the Lord talk back to me through the words of the Bible and nurturing my soul. Today, I am sharing some of Renee's passion with you in this interview. I hope that it gets you thinking about how you can de-clutter your life and get you hungry for nurturing your own soul, and the soul of your family. 
You seem very passionate about the topic of emotional well-being for families. What inspired the work you now do? 
My mom suffered from clinical depression and I grew up navigating a lot of chaos and uncertainty (part of this was due to coming from a family of nine). I never knew what to expect day-to-day and feelings of peace and harmony seemed fleeting and far between. My emotional well-being was entirely dependent on what was going on around me. I was never taught that it’s possible to experience inner peace even in the midst of disequilibrium. Nurturing the Soul of Your Family teaches parents an invaluable skill: to anchor within themselves and that they can experience happiness, harmony and well-being, even in the midst of mayhem.

You have worked with thousands of women at all life stages from around the globe for almost 14 years through your Personal Renewal Group program and workshops. What do they share are the biggest challenges they face?
Many women (and men) share they feel overscheduled, overworked, like they’re always rushing and life has become a giant to-do list. Overuse and misuse of technology is making them feel disconnected and it’s hard to unplug and just “be.” Due to an extreme lack of self-care — they’re parenting from an “empty cup,” feeling exhausted, and are concerned that they’re losing the ability to find joy in daily family life.

Your book outlines ten paths to peace to help readers reconnect and experience more peace on a daily basis. What are they?
  • Tapping the transformative power of self-care: attune and respond to your needs and desires 
  • Healing from the inside out: peace begins with me 
  • Unplugging to plug in: remember, people first, things second 
  • Unleashing the healing power of nature: the ultimate antidepressant 
  • Making time for spiritual renewal: return to the river within 
  • Loving the ones you’re with: spend time together (like you mean it!) 
  • Defining, celebrating, and honoring your family culture: what do you stand for? 
  • Slowing down: do less to experience more 
  • Exploring a new way of being: make hard choices, break free, and do it different 
  • Building your tribe: ask for and embrace help as you create your support network

If families were to just embrace three or four insights or strategies from Nurturing the Soul of Your Family that would make a big impact on their daily lives, what would they be? 
  1. Be open to a new way of being: Be bold, do it different. Be willing to take the road less traveled. Open up to the possibility that there is another way of seeing and experiencing life and begin to imagine what that would look like for your family. 
  2. Be compassionate and loving with yourself: treat yourself as worthy of the same self-nurturing, acceptance, and tenderness that are afforded your children. 
  3. Invite in playfulness and curiosity as you begin your journey; awareness is the first step towards positive change. 
  4. Get support — smart people do. It makes everything easier.

Having coached thousands of men and women around coming into greater alignment with how they desire to live and work, what is needed for change to occur?

Three things: Clarity and a vision for what they want (what does the life/career you desire look and feel like?), lots of self-compassion (making a life or career change is courageous work!) and taking deeply guided baby steps while getting lots of support (often we try to run before we’ve learned to crawl). Support could be from a friend, mentor, coach, a therapist, a minister or someone else. Learning to ask for and receive help can take years of practice; it’s like strengthening a muscle.

What’s the most important thing we should be teaching our kids right now around self-care and emotional health? 
As parents we spend a lot of time and energy around our kids’ cognitive and physical development, but we rarely focus on their emotional or spiritual health. Conveying to our kids-through our actions that they not only deserve and have permission to nurture their hearts and souls, but that it’s their birthright to do so — could be one of the most important lessons we ever share.

What is your greatest hope for families?
My greatest hope is that this book will inspire parents to new ways of being. That it will help them find their center and move through chaos and uncertainty with renewed strength and ease; live in greater alignment with their values and what matters most; slow down, live more intentionally and know what's best for themselves and their family; and release old fears and learn to live more in the present moment . And most importantly, that it will help them see that their family members can be their greatest source of joy!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Renée Peterson Trudeau is the author of the new book Nurturing the Soul of Your Family. A sought after life balance coach/speaker and president of Career Strategists, her work has appeared in The New York Times, Good Housekeeping and numerous media outlets. On the faculty of Kripalu Center for Yoga & Wellness, she leads life balance workshops and retreats for Fortune 500 companies and organizations worldwide. Thousands of women in ten countries are participating in Personal Renewal Groups based on her first book, The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal. She lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband and son. http://www.reneetrudeau.com


NURTURING THE SOUL OF THE FAMILY by Renée Peterson Trudeau 
March 1, 2013 • Parenting/Personal Growth • 240 pages • Trade Paperback 
Price: $15.95 • ISBN 978-1-60868-158-7
I love how Renee talks about unplugging and getting into nature to relieve stress. These ideas are so powerful and so simple. We've done so much to clutter and complicate life that we've lost the soul in our families. I pray that as you journey to a clutter free house and life, that you would take time to pour into yourself and fill your own cup before you can fully and effectively fill the cup of your family. My faith in Jesus has been my source of strength, my light in darkness, and my hope for the future. God's word {the Bible} has answered by prayers, guided my path, and cemented my values.

Renee asks an important question in this book, what do you stand for? I pray that if you don't know, you find the right answers from the right people. If you don't have anyone to ask. Ask me. I would love to walk with you through this journey.
Disclosure: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. All opinions expressed by me here are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


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