The Road to Joy: Eight Pathways to Psychospiritual Transformation

by Kevin P. McClone, M.Div. Psy.D.,.C.A.D.C. Reviewed by Eileen Quinn Knight, Ph.D.

This book was finished after the pandemic began. The author is a clinical psychologist in practice for over twenty years. He brings his wisdom and experiences to all readers. The book is written for anyone desiring to discover their deeper calling and to embrace life more fully. The author speaks words of comfort, encouragement and hope to people who struggle with physical, mental, and emotional challenges.

The Road to Joy embraces eight core pathways which may be a useful resource going forward, It doesn’t seek to escape suffering but rather to discover deeper meaning in suffering amidst trauma and loss. It aims to discover the virtue of living out of one’s deepest desires and truest self which is all the more important when we are forced through suffering to reevaluate how we are all connected to each other.

McClone proposes action steps for our lives:

Finding your purpose. We do this not only for ourselves but for others to find meaning in their life and work by encouraging them to volunteer for good causes that are meaningful for them.

Cultivate a habit of identifying and expressing gratitude. This pathway certainly makes a difference in how our day unfolds. We are grateful to people for the ordinary tasks of life.

Develop a habit of sharing joy with others. Close relationships with family and friends provide love, meaning, and support and increase our feeling of self-worth. Creating new relationships is essential for happiness.

Be of service to others. It is amazing how performing small gestures for random people can bring you so much joy.

Be in the present moment. Pay attention to what you are doing, consciously create your life with each purposeful action. Meditate daily.

Challenge negative thinking and promote positive thoughts. As the Scripture states: “Think thoughts of peace and not of affliction”. Focus on what you and others are good at.

Do what you love and love what you do. Do something you love every day: reading, gardening, walking, teaching, and talking to others or a combination of those things you love.

Strive for balanced self-care. Being active makes us happier as well as being good for our physical health. Unplug from technology and get outside for a walk.

Bringing these eight core pathways together, we come home, to discover the full embrace of the transforming and merciful love of the God our understanding into the true joy of the fullness of life. Together, these eight pathways and their practical action steps can assist in guiding us to fuller living, one day at a time. This more authentic self, in turn, draws us to become free to love more deeply. When love and joy enter our lives, we are called to respond.

This book is truly written for everyone who appreciates the sacredness of the ordinary and everydayness of life. It challenges all to find what they are grateful for and then to live in that gratitude. Following the action steps gives us the structure we all need in this pandemic to have the hope and joy we need.

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