Let’s Switch on Our Joy!

How To Connect With Your Spouse During The Holidays

Crazy Cool Families, Do You Want a Joy-Filled Family?  

Today we have a special guest, Chris Coursey! He lives and does ministry in Michigan and is all about relationships! Just like us! Chris is the author of The Joy Switch  and is what we are focusing today’s conversation on his book! He shares the incredible correlations between our brains and our joy. Let’s jump in!

The Joy Switch

Chris said The Joy Switch is an introductory book. His ministry partner (Thrive) trains on 19 different relational skills. The Joy Switch is a foundational skill we all need to start with. He calls is “Skill Zero!” This skill is all about learning to turn on your relational brain. He shared how the book helps you understand the right side of your brain, which they call your relational circuit.  

The right side of your brain operates as an engine, or circuit breaker. We have the ability to put too many things inside it. Chris explained we can learn to recognize if it’s on or off. If it’s on, we are curious, peaceful, and wanting to connect with people. When it goes off, we go into problem solving MODE. We start looking at the world as a place full of enemies, not relationships.  

“On” (Relational) and “Off”  (Enemy) Mode 

When someone is in off mode, it will affect their relationships. They can create “relational road kill” because they breeze past people with no regard for feelings. Usually people in “off” or “enemy” mode have little to no joy. The right side of their brain has shut off and their “relational circuit” is off. Without our right brain working well, it is really hard to have joy within relationships.

Basically anything can create this enemy mode feeling and it’s our job to learn to recognize when it is happening. Parents, we are invited to learn this skill and teach it to our kids!

“On Mode” is also known as “relational mode.” Chris said it this way, Joy is our brain’s sweet spot.” God designed us to live within a state of joy, peace, and life-giving interactions with our relationships. 

Questions We Cover About the 2 Modes: 

  • How do we live joyfully as parents?  
  • What’s the difference between happy and joyful? 
  • How do I stay in “relational mode” when trying to get things done? 
  • How do I help my kids when they are in enemy mode

Chris unpacked so many questions for us and we loved every word! He shared several practical ways his family practices self-awareness and turning on their Joy Switch when things feel off.

Listen to the whole episode to learn all of the ways Chris taught us to live joyfully!


  • I am the best version of myself when I am relational
  • In relational mode, we are be better reflections of who God made us to be (Ephesians 2)
  • Our facial expressions are so important (especially with little kids), so we need to pay attention to our face
  • Parents, we can learn the Joy Switch skills!
  • The best thing for me is to take care of myself first and switch back on our relational switch!  
  • The best thing you can do for your family is present the healthiest version of you!  

Connect With Chris and His Ministry Partner: 

  • Buy the Book! The Joy Switch: How Your Brain’s Secret Circuit Affects Your Relationships…And How You Can Activate It by Chris M. Coursey
  • Visit Their Website: www.thrivetoday.org
How To Connect With Your Spouse During The Holidays

If you have a question or a parenting issue that you’d like us to discuss in a future podcast, email us at [email protected].

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