Hope for Life

Among the life experiences that inspired Jim Doyle to write, “Hope for Life: Being Your Best Self When You Need It,” was the love, care and compassion his family felt through CaringBridge during the health journey of his cousin, Rita. Jim also lost his son, Sean, at a young age, and more recently survived being struck by a distracted driver while he was out on a mid-day walk.

Each of these life-altering events reinforced Jim’s belief that hope—and resilience—can foster wellbeing. This is a central theme in the book Jim describes this way: “Wellbeing is a state of mind. Living with hope, faith, optimism, happiness and resilience can help sustain a positive mindset. How we respond to adversity in life is a matter of choice.”

The choices, according to Jim, are to give up—or to give in. He prefers the latter, which offers more chances for accepting adversity, without agreeing to it. “By choosing to put one foot in front of the other and move with momentum of life,” he writes, “we create new possibilities.”

Jim compares the give up/give in choices to the innate flight-or-fight instinct, and also introduces the concept of using hope and resilience to “go with the flow” in challenging times.

Through his family’s use of CaringBridge, Jim was moved to create a hopeful visual for being your best self in challenging times Here’s how he outlines the LIVE model:

L =  let go with faith

I = be inspired for self and by others

V = be vibrant with a vison for life

E = focus energy on the positive

He encourages readers to let go of limiting thoughts and behaviors and to have faith in a more uplifting and aspirational mindset. Over time, Jim believes people can be inspired by their own grace and also by seeing ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

Having a vibrant vision for life and energy to focus on the positive can be the outcome of giving in vs. giving up. According to Jim, this is the ultimate source of the hope and resilience that enables wellbeing.

Buy Hope for Life on Amazon.

— Book review by Patricia McMorrow, CaringBridge Staff