= Soulful Living
Reviewer: The Rebecca Review
"For I don't want to exist
as if in some mindless entanglement in a meaningless world. I
want to work myself like a silken thread in a web to which I
belong." ~Denise Bissonnette
Through creative writing, Denise encourages the individual to
traverse the unknown and to start a journey into the world of
soul. The place inside us longing to discover, inquire, solve
mysteries, be surprised, awaken to passion or live in a place of
fulfillment and purpose.
The feather on the cover seems to be symbolizing the
individual or perhaps a writing tool through which we
communicate. I also think this symbolizes our ability to fly.
This illuminating guide while help you live a more soulful life.
“The Wholehearted Journey” will encourage you to leave your
path in the world of the mundane and fly in the world of
The experience while reading this book is similar to being
captivated by a speaker who has found a way to communicate with
your soul. In fact Denise is an internationally renowned writer,
impassioned trainer and speaker.
In this work, she draws on an eclectic array of sources. Her
work is also enriched with quotations from inspirational
writers, teachers, poets, spiritual leaders and philosophers.
There are over 500 quotes! There is nothing I love more than to
find a book filled with stories, quotes, poems and divine
metaphors. Denise is not only a poet when writing her poems. The
way she sees life is truly beautiful.
I loved the themes of the 20
I Dedicate This Day: Bringing the Sacred into the Everyday
Unlived Dreams and Rising Bread: Shaping Fresh Hope from New
Arriving: Embracing the Unknown
Nurture Your Nature: Celebrating Your Gifts
Rekindle the Flame: Restoring Purpose and Passion
The Masquerade: Befriending Yourself and Others
New Wings: Moving Through Fear
Lessons from the Apple Tree: Accepting Change
Meadowlarks: Renewing the Joy of Giving
The Puppeteer: Pulling Your Own Strings
The Beauty of Today: Seizing the Day
The Journey to Belong: Employing Your Inner Compass
On Second Thought: Harnessing Perspective
At the Feet of the World: Becoming More Teachable
A Heart Contained: Choosing Joy
I want to Live in Color: Living Wholeheartedly
Not One Alike: Valuing your Part in the Whole
Rhythm: Cultivating Balance in Life and Work
Veil of Wonder: Seeing through New Eyes
A Pilgrim's Plea: Remaining True to the Soul
Denise starts each chapter with an original poem, she then
reflects on the concepts presented in the poem and presents
additional passages and quotes for reflection. There are stories
which present profound wisdom in only a few lines, quotes
teaching truly interesting concepts and insights to inspire you
in your own writing or journey. There is a page after each
chapter for your own notes.
Her original poems are something she receives, not something
she crafts. That is very true when writing poetry. While many
poets seem to be writing in a code only they understand,
Denise’s poems are written with an open heart and a focus on
Her creativity spills onto the pages in a refreshing stream.
Her focus is not only on the outer world. She has an honest and
deep desire to share what she has learned so the reader can
enter the inner world. The place where your most important
“For each of us must travel
the uncharted seas of our lives, alone.
yet, blessedly, together, side by side.
Trusting that inner compass of hope
and courage and imagination.
Never forgetting that
when we bring heart to the journey,
we make it holy.
When we bring heart to the journey,
we will not lose sight of the brilliant
stars in the immense night sky.”
What makes this book truly life changing is the “To Ponder
and Practice” sections. After reading each chapter you have
the opportunity to reflect on your own life and make notes that
will guide you to a more fulfilled existence.
Through the chapters, you will learn how to live in the hear
and there, dedicate your days, put your imagination to work,
kick the habit of comparison, embrace your limitations and
potential, celebrate the differences of your gifts, believe in
invisible forces, befriend the dragon, soar on wings of choice,
take the unknown one piece at a time, claim your power, seize
the present day, rest in the warm pockets of the world, harness
the power of perspective, recognize your teachers, cultivate
joy, refuse to be tamed by the world, practiced compassion, make
balance a priority, recognize your path and so much more!
I especially enjoyed the “lessons from the apple tree”
because my grandmother always made pies from an apple tree in
her backyard. There are actually two parts to the poem in this
chapter. One is written by Denise and one is “humorously”
written by the Apple Tree. In this same chapter, Denise gives us
one of many gifts. She retells a story she told to her daughter
about a rose bush. I found this interesting and meaningful as my
grandmother’s yard was also filled with rose bushes.
I spent about five evenings reading this book and found it to
be healing and inspirational. Each evening I climbed into bed
and lost myself in the pages for hours at a time. You could also
read one chapter a day for 20 days or only read one chapter a
week. Once you start reading this book, it will be difficult not
to want to keep reading all night long!
I think this book will come into your life when you need it
most. Don’t all books arrive just when you need them? I am
definitely going to add many of the books the author mentioned
to my reading list.
In fact, while reading this book, many things were going on
in my life and I found it very interesting how I would read a
chapter and feel as if this book had been sent to me by an angel
to help me understand certain situations. Part of the beauty of
many books is the thoughts you have while reading them. This is
a book that will inspire you to think beautiful thoughts.
Denise Bissonnette’s poems are also available on CD titled:
“Poems for the Wholehearted Journey.” I would encourage you
to also find the CD as it added to the entire experience. Denise
reads her poems beautifully and her voice is calming and her
interpretation is inspiring.
For spiritual beings desiring a more fulfilled human
A Practical & Creative Guide to Finding
a Soul-Satisfying Vocation
What Next? The complete guide to taking control of your working life
= Heading in a New Direction
Reviewer: The Rebecca Review.com
“Work is one of the most intimate expressions of our
identity. Bad work crushes us. It destroys our sense of
competence and spills over into all areas of our life. Great
work, in contrast, inspires us. It makes our souls sing. It
allows us to be the best we can be.” ~Barbara Moses
Whether you are just starting out and are looking for that
first job to start you on your career path or you are
considering changing careers in order to find a more fulfilling
work environment, I can highly recommend “What Next?”
When you start reading the introduction, you will be amazed
by the depth to which this book will take you. This is not a dry
how-to-find-a-job book, this is about finding a soul-satisfying
vocation. It is about finding work that not only provides a
sense of purpose, but allows us to express our values, talents
The two main ideas of “What Next” include developing an
independent attitude of being who you are by expressing your
authentic self and acknowledging that a good job is a right, not
Dr. Barbara Moses is a career expert who shows people how to
uncover the core themes of their present jobs and find a career
to help them become an expert in their field. She is known as a
“career guru” and her widely-read career column in the
national Globe and Mail shows her deep love for career activism.
In this excellent source, you will:
Find out why career decisions can be distorted by unhealthy
attitudes about money.
Discover your core interests.
Know how to express your authentic self in any work situation.
Find the information on how to avoid being a victim of age
Overcome fear and learn to find work in tough times.
The 5 chapters include information on how to:
1. Know Yourself – The author
starts with you, not with a list of jobs you might be interested
in. First, you find out who you are. It was enlightening to
discover my core needs in relation to the work environment. Do
you want to change the world? Help people become more
successful? Become famous? This is a book you will want to save.
Throughout each chapter, you can record your thoughts about
career issues. If you don’t know who you are by page 85, I can
tell you, you never will. This is simply brilliant information.
Dr. Barbara Moses will show you how to identify your
“motivational type.” Are you a sociability seeker, career
builder, authenticity seeker, personal developer, autonomy
seeker, novelty seeker, stability seeker or lifestyler. This was
all very intriguing. Once you have identified yourself, you can
research work environments that are the best possible match for
your “motivational type.”
2. Find Your Perfect Path –
Once you have discovered your “motivational type” you can
proceed with confidence to the rest of the book. You can then
start to figure out which organizational sector fits with your
personality. You will easily find one of the industry sectors
that really appeals to your ideas of a great job. This is the
chapter that discusses “changing your career.”
3. Find Great Work – Finally
you know who you are and you have your areas of interest all
mapped out. Now you create a powerful resume and cover letter
and start interviewing. There is also information about what to
do or not do when you lose a job. You will find out what
employers are looking for and discover how to “net” a job.
There are samples of a chronological and functional resume. The
interview section is quite interesting. I’ve been asked some
pretty tricky questions that I would have understood more fully
had I discovered this wonderful resource near the time of the
4. Overcome Career Challenges
– If you have started to feel that your work is meaningless,
you might be going through a career crisis. This chapter
discusses everything from being fired to overcoming boredom and
burnout. Are you feeling unfulfilled or do you have to deal with
a difficult manager?
5. Boost Your Career Intelligence –
Learn how to market yourself, overcome networking angst and be
kind to yourself. Throughout this book you will also find
diagnostic instruments, guided exercises, quizzes and
easy-to-follow samples, models and worked examples.
“What Next?” is an insightful look at how we can select a
fulfilling career. Barbara Moses gives you the power to find
your dream job in a contemporary employment landscape. This has
to be the most exciting book on employment I’ve ever
Beautiful Ideas for Reinventing Neighborhoods, July 24,
"Researchers have demonstrated that a feeling of community
reduces suburban depression."
The first pictures I observed upon opening this book were of a
lovely neighborhood in much need of comfort and the beautiful
results after the streets had been lined with trees. Sidewalks
had also been created and pathways up to each front porch
created a very inviting environment. The trees shaded the
walkways and people enjoyed riding their bikes down the streets.
The contrast was eye opening and the results very comforting.
You can imagine the people living in this area finally feeling
like they were home.
The contents include:
The Changing Face of Suburbia
Reinventing Our Neighborhoods for Health, Profit, and Community
Imagining a Sustainable Neighborhood
How to Remodel a Neighborhood
Germination: First Steps
Leafing Out: Bolder Ideas
Your Neighborhood Blossoms: Boldest Steps
Suburban Revitalization I: Can This Dream Become a Reality?
Suburban Revitalization II: Making Bold Dreams Come True
Taking Care in the Neighborhood
This book helps to emphasize the isolation of the typical
suburban house and shows how the community design seems to
emphasize private space instead of community. This promotes a
lack of connection. Could the way we live promote depression and
a lack of friendships? Could the way we build communities lessen
domestic violence, encourage community interaction and promote a
general feeling of well-being?
Like Feng Shui, this book gives ideas for building or restoring
neighborhoods to promote happiness and to reduce stress. While
some say we are not a product of our environment, it only takes
a little research to find out that where there is more hope and
a greater sense of community, humans seem to thrive.
"...research reveals that in a closely knit community,
levels of serotonin (a natural anti-depressant) are higher, so
the neighborhood is collectively more optimistic and
energetic." ~pg. 26
The transformations in communities is revealed in pictures that
explore the role of nature in our comfort level. Would you
rather live behind high brick walls or enjoy a more peaceful and
serene landscape of short fences and flowered walkways? In one
section, an alleyway between living spaces is transformed into a
little piece of heaven.
Some of the features include:
Ten Basic Design Principles for Remodeling Neighborhoods
How to Sponsor Community Dinners
Replacing asphalt with porous pavers - to reduce heat absorption
As a child, I remember two types of homes. One with a backyard,
tightly fenced in, and another with wide-open spaces and easy
access to walking through community spaces. I can tell you, I
preferred the latter.
This book is filled with wisdom and great advice for city
planners and I've seen the idea of producing an edible landscape
work efficiently in some areas. As a child we used to pick fruit
off trees on the walk home from school. It is a dream that can
come true and this book has many ideas that once implemented
will improve the lives of everyone in the community. By reading
this book, you may also decide to move to a location that values
~The Rebecca Review
Currently living in an area without fences and lovely tree-lined