United Methodist Agency CEO Opens Up About His Breakdown

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Junius Dotson's book Soul Reset debuts in time for National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.

Everyone needs to keep their soul hydrated and healthy in order to lead well.

Everything was fine … until it wasn’t. Junius Dotson’s new book, Soul Reset, details a candid account of the former pastor’s journey through grief, depression, burnout, emotional breakdown, and his journey to wholeness. Dotson’s journey has led him on a path of sharing principles and practices with leaders who have the awesome responsibility of guiding people. Whether you are leading a corporate team, a congregation, or your family, everyone needs to keep their soul hydrated and healthy in order to lead well.    

“It took an actual breakdown for me to realize that I needed a soul reset,” says Dotson, the General Secretary/CEO of Discipleship Ministries, an international agency of the United Methodist Church. “Understanding that anxiety, depression, and the inability to be vulnerable are leading causes of many problems we face, including suicide, it was imperative for me to come clean as a pastor and person of faith about my wake-up call,” Dotson adds. “My refusal to confront what was facing me created insurmountable anxiety in my life that turned into full-blown depression, and it nearly took me out.”

The title, Soul Reset, echoes the “return to factory settings” option on a computer. Sometimes when a computer – or a life – gets so filled with clutter and extraneous matter, the best solution is a hard reset, a process that restores the device to its original setting.

“It [a breakdown] could happen to the best of us,” explains Dotson. “I bought into the myth that what it took to be a strong leader was to never allow myself to be vulnerable.”

Dotson starts the Soul Reset book tour in Dallas, September 6–8. The appearances include half-day leadership summits, signings, and speaking to leaders and congregations about a plan to reset and reorder their lives around spiritual practices and principles. “We are going to have difficult seasons,” Dotson says. “But learning to walk through those challenging times requires us to be connected to a source greater than ourselves,” he said. The book tour and speaking schedule are available at SoulReset.org.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
A recognized visionary leader in church revitalization, the Rev. Junius B. Dotson is the General Secretary (CEO) of Discipleship Ministries, an international agency of The United Methodist Church. Prior to his present position, Rev. Dotson served as pastor of Saint Mark United Methodist Church in Wichita, Kansas, where he was instrumental in transforming the church into a 3,500-member multicampus congregation. Soul Reset is published by Upper Room Books, part of Discipleship Ministries.

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