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Van Moody, international thought leader, people scholar, faith leader and bestselling author, established himself as a thought leader on relationships with his first book, The People Factor and now with the follow-up book, The I-Factor, he examines the most important relationship you’ll ever have, the one with yourself and how it impacts every other relationship in your life.

He shares with the reader how to get out of your own way in order to have the relationships you desire most. This applies to all relationships: intimate relationships, parent-child relationships and even business relationships. The principles Moody shares in The I-Factor are applicable no matter where the reader is in his or her life.

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 In addition to being a bestselling author, Van Moody is a prolific speaker and a core team member for the Dr. Oz Show, where he contributes on health from a relational perspective, ending toxic relationships and how the right connections can elevate your brand and catapult you to the next level.

A native of Atlanta, Georgia, Moody has studied at some of the most respected academic institutions in the world, including: DePauw University (Greencastle, IN), Harvard University (Cambridge, MA), Oxford University (Oxford, England), and the Interdenominational Theological Center (Atlanta, Georgia). In March 2006, Moody established The Worship Center Christian Church in Birmingham, Alabama. This thriving church, which began with 70 members, now serves more than 8,000 members in the form of two locations, six weekly services and an online campus viewed from as far away as Kuwait.

With his unique ability to understand and communicate timeless truths in highly relevant, contemporary ways, Moody challenges and equips audiences to fulfill their potential and live their purpose. Van Moody resides in Birmingham, Alabama with his wife, Dr. Ty, and their two children, Eden Sydney and Ethan Isaiah.

One question lies behind every struggle we face: How do I deal with myself? Behind all our stumbles, behind each of our missteps, behind every one of our failings lies an inability to handle what Van Moody calls the “I-Factor.” More than self-worth or self-respect, beyond even character and perception of purpose, the I-Factor is about managing yourself–your whole life–well. Do you have a healthy I-Factor? Take the assessment to find out!

HOW HEALTHY IS YOUR I-FACTOR?\

What was the greatest motivation for you to write this book? 

In my last book, The People Factor, I write: “Every relationship you have influences your life. There are no neutral relationships. Each one lifts you up or weighs you down. It moves you forward or holds you back. It helps you or it hurts you.”

All of these statements are true, and I believe them as strongly today as ever. But I wrote The I Factor because I also understand a parallel truth about relationships: It’s your relationship with yourself that trumps every other association in your life. Everything I believe about the power of relationships with others, I believe even more about your relationship with yourself.

It can be the most dangerous relationship you ever have, or the most awesome one. It is the difference-maker between success and failure. No one can derail your destiny as quickly or effectively as you can. On the other hand, no one can position you for success and for the fulfillment of your dreams as well as you can.

Over the past few years, I have been astounded at the overwhelming amount of stories about people who were gifted and talented and had so much opportunity in front of them but they failed only because they could not manage themselves well.

My goal in The I-Factoris to put a stop to the sad stories of defeat that seem to be more and more frequent these days. I want to see people become the main characters in their own success stories and not suffer because of internal issues that keep them from fulfilling their destinies.

I want to know how I can talk to people better so my relationships with people are better?

Start by listening more. The best communicators are active listeners. When the people you are in relationship with know that you are willing to listen to them more than talk, they will feel more valued by you and as a result desire greater relationship with you. Every great relationship requires give and take, deposits and withdrawals. When you listen more, you give more and make the kind of deposits that people really appreciate.

What’s the best approach when your heart has been broken multiple times, Pastor Moody?

The best approach is to forgive. One of the biggest reasons people live in bondage to past failures, past mistakes, past relationships or past opportunities is that they don’t forgive the people who have hurt them or held them back.

Unforgiveness keeps people trapped in their past and unable to move forward because it prevents them from assessing the present appropriately and from seeing the future clearly. The moment we choose not to forgive is the moment we bind ourselves to the past.

Are your books The People Factor and The I-Factor, biblically-based, spiritually-based, psychology-based or a combination of all 3?

They are a combination of all three.

How do you reclaim or find yourself after a failed relationship?

You reclaim yourself by first understanding that your identity was never based on that relationship. Your “Who” is not based on your “do” or even what has been “done” to you! Your value and your significance has nothing to do with anything outside of you.

Who you really are and why you are so valuable is who you are on the inside. Your identity is not based on what you do, your circumstances or even what has happened to you. Who you are is much more significant than any of those things. When you know this you can find yourself and move on.

How do you do things for yourself without feeling selfish when you have family with needs?

They only way to be healthy and beneficial for all of the people who need you is to periodically pour back into yourself. You can only drive a car so far on one tank of gas. After a while, the car will be empty and need to be re-fueled in order to keep moving. You are the same way, you have to intentionally do the things that re-fuel you so you can keep going and be healthy for you and the people who depend on you.

How can I begin to feel who I am?

You have to “Peel The Onion”. The process of discovering your personal identity is one of the most rewarding journeys you will ever take. It’s not easy, but when you begin to find out and tap into who you really are, apart from all the trappings of your life, The results will invigorate you, empower you, and take your breath away. This process is very similar to peeling of an onion. When you peel an onion, you remove one layer at a time until you get to the core of the onion, which began as an onion seed.

Just as the onion started with a seed, you also started as a seed, biologically speaking, the seed of life. That seed carried everything about you, and the unique DNA code of who you are—your identity—was in it. Over time, many layers have piled on top of that unique identity, layers of experience, layers of fear, layers of disappointment, and layers of so many other things. Getting back to the core of who you are, the seed, allows you to live from the healthy place of your true identity. Do that and you will begin to feel who you really are.

Pastor Moody, do you think that The I-Factor would help or be beneficial to someone who is suffering from depression?

Absolutely! In fact one of the best stories someone shared with me recently is that they had struggled with depression for much of their life until they heard The I-Factor message and read the book. This person is now depression-free because of this life-changing message.

Does it help you discover your purpose?

The I-Factor will absolutely help you to discover your purpose! You cannot adequately answer your “Why” question, which is what purpose is all about (Why Am I Here? What Am I Created To Do?), without first answering your “Who” question (Who Are You? What Makes You Special and Unique?). The I-Factor deals with the deeper “who” questions so you can step into your purpose, your “why”, with boldness.

PHOTO: Van Moody promo

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One thought on “Get Well Wednesdays: How To Have Healthy Relationships

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