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THRIVE Training

Joy-based relational skill training for thriving relationships!

THRIVE Training equips you with relational skills that even the best families may miss or overlook. Careful study of Scripture and of how the brain is configured led us to identify 19 brain-based relational skills that provide the full range of life functions for our minds and relationships. When we lack these skills, pain, addictions, conflicts and other problems prevail.

If you feel pushed beyond your limits by someone else’s anger, fear or even joy, for example, you know what it feels like when Skill 9 is missing. Perhaps your parents were not fully equipped or lacked the time to practice a skill with you. Whatever the case THRIVEtoday gives you the strategic training you missed growing up and changes patterns that were handed down for generations, all for under $20 a training hour! It’s hard to hire a life coach, counselor or consultant for that price.

Upcoming THRIVE Training

March 1-6, 2020

July 19-24, 2020

October 11-16, 2020

What makes THRIVE Training special?

THRIVEtoday is all about joy! The video will help you understand why joy is such an important factor in our training.

Much of the latest trend of techniques and theory designed to make us better parents, effective leaders, and competent counselors lack a solid understanding of the right hemisphere of the brain that drives much of our behavior. This leaves those of us trying to apply their methods empty and disappointed.

You may be disheartened by the results you have seen from seminars and even spiritual experiences in the past and you know something must be missing. You may have learned wonderful ideas, felt deeply moved, inspired, anointed and even healed. Your desire to change has never matched your ability. There may be something missing that words and will alone cannot achieve.

We liken ministries, businesses and Christian leaders to farmers looking at plows. They look for better and better plows but never notice that when the person with a tractor sells his plow to a man with a mule it does not work the same. We thrive when we build emotional capacity or, as Jim DeGolyer, a missionary from Ecuador, puts it, we need “right-hemispheric leadership development.”

For this reason, THRIVEtoday has the vision to develop the capacity of leaders, pastors, counselors, teachers, and ministers, not just improve their tools.

4 Relational Skills Training Tracks

THRIVEtoday offers four skill training tracks that grow in complexity. Each Track starts with a 5-day event where you experience hands-on training that teaches you skills to practice with your training partner for an entire year, so you will be prepared for the next Track.

• in Thrive: True Identity you will learn practical skills to start your joy
• in Thrive: Track One you will learn how to increase your joy
• in Thrive: Track Two you will enhance your return to joy skills from negative emotions
• in Thrive: Track Three focuses on how to pass on the skills to others

For the first time ever we have a new Training Track for THRIVEtoday called True Identity. In Thrive: True Identity you learn, practice and apply several of the 19 brain skills to your life with no prior preparation and without the partner requirement.

Thrive: True Identity is where you jump start your experience with joy using a variety of relational brain skills from appreciation to rest with engaging exercises to increase your ability to lead an Immanuel Lifestyle. All of this means you live peacefully and joyfully with the comforting awareness of God by your side. Your normal everyday life is transformed into a new normal of joy and peace.

Learning new brain skills require time, practice and interaction. While we wish you could learn new brain skills by reading a book or watching a video, this is not how God designed the relational wiring in your brain. Much like going to the gym to exercise, brain skills are learned with hands-on exercises in shared states of joy. Thrive: True Identity provides new exercises for you to learn new brain skills so you start experiencing serious joy. After all, joy is supposed to be your natural state for life, relationships, faith, and your emotional and mental health. If joy is not your “normal”, then Thrive: True Identity is for you!

Thrive: True Identity has two unique features:

  • You do not need a partner. Yes, we said it. You are free from the partner requirement.
  • There is no required preparation. You register now and show up in July.

Where to start?

Some of you already have a partner. This means you have options! You can attend Thrive: True Identity or you can sign up for Track One on Joy and Rest – which is still the natural place to begin for pairs. A number of you have graduated from all three tracks of THRIVE and while you can repeat any track you like, Thrive: True Identity may be the refreshing week you need right now to bolster your skills, practice new exercises and apply the skills in fresh ways to specific areas of your life. Here is a list of the four training tracks so you can pick the option that’s right for you:

Thrive: True Identity – Easy entry because anyone can attend with no partner requirement and no preparation required.

Thrive: Track 1 – Joy and Rest – The starting point for partners, preparation required.

Thrive: Track 2 – Return to Joy – Partners who completed Track One, preparation required.

Thrive: Track 3 – Solutions for Pain – Partners who finished Tracks One and Two, preparation required.

What does Thrive: True Identity cover?

Thrive: True Identity retrains your brain focusing on:

  • Eating: using food to build my joy.
  • Resting: inserting rest into my life.
  • Praying: interacting with Immanuel (God with us).
  • Belonging: keeping relationships bigger.
  • Playing: adding play to my life and relationships.
  • Giving: giving from the heart Jesus gave me.

Although Thrive: True Identity is separate and distinct from the regular training tracks, it does join the three tracks at times throughout the day during the training event.


There is no required preparation for Thrive: True Identity. Go ahead, break into your happy dance as you hurry to register for the next event.

The fun begins at Track One where you learn how thriving is directly related to how well you synchronize your personal and relational rhythms. Thriving is the visible sign of a well-synchronized life. Being disconnected and off-line will tire us out and reduce our energy level. Track One provides a solid dose of joy & quiet training combined with an introduction to many of the 19 brain skills. You will practice Immanuel moments and learn how to restore your relational circuits, and much more. In Track One you build joyful skills to grow!

It is important to recognize that the first year of training in joy and quiet can make people quite aware of the missing love and attachment in their lives. We purposely do not try to provide or create temporary bonds and relationships at THRIVEtoday to fill this need. Our goal is to strengthen existing bonds, so bring someone with you! Building joy can trigger pain if you recently experienced loss or feel lonely.

If you want to learn how to play the violin, climb a mountain or pick up golf, you need to prepare. You begin with careful study and review of the essentials in order to successfully learn about your new hobby. Eventually, you need to pick up the violin and practice. Sooner or later you have to grab that golf club and hit the ball down the green. At THRIVEtoday we want you fully prepared before you attend. It is for this reason you have two ways to learn the training. Step One includes reading materials and videos along with online curriculum to apply the theory to your life. These materials ensure you have the Scriptural and theoretical basis for the hands-on practice with your partner at THRIVE Training. The first block starts with hands-on training and exercises. There is no time for teaching or application during the training. Each training track has specific steps for preparation.


Track One preparation (prior to attendance)
1) The Life Model: Living from the Heart Jesus Gave You book by Friesen, Wilder, Bierling, Koepcke, Poole.

2) A personal assessment of your earned maturity based on the above book or chart here.

3) Transforming Fellowship book by Chris Coursey

4) Joy and Quiet: THRIVE @ Home Online Course (includes embedded lectures). Includes 6 hours of Jim Wilder videos and 88 discussion questions totaling approximately 25 hours of preparation. The THRIVE Online course is likened to getting a degree in relational skills. You have the “classroom” portion with the course while the THRIVE one-week training is your hands-on, interactive training lab. Learning the theory and applying the material to your life takes time. Don’t rush your learning experience!

Recommended (but optional) preparation

-Share Immanuel booklet by Coursey and Wilder

Now that you have practiced one full year’s worth of joy and quiet, you are ready to tackle Track Two. Here you discover how the painful failure to thrive impacts your life and relationships. Failure to thrive means lives spent in pain, fleeing pain, or rigidly avoiding any risk of pain. This failure to thrive emerges from a badly developed and poorly trained control center. Recovery consists of identifying the breakdown in the growth process and repairing the disruptions. We will learn what happens when we fail to keep our personal and relational rhythms synchronized. In Track Two you will bolster your ability to employ the 19 Relational Skills.

Year two requires more capacity from participants. Each participant will need experience with joy and have enough capacity to deal with unpleasant feelings like sadness, anger, fear, disgust, shame, and hopeless despair in moderate doses. We will teach a cohesive approach and introduce simple repair skills. Track Two is for those who have previously experienced the joy practice at Thrive: Track One as well as the Basic Thrive Skills Guide. In Track Two attendees enjoy daily Preparation Groups as part of the 5-day training. These are blocks set aside for attendees to discuss and identify how Skill 12, Acting Like Myself, relates to Scripture and each basic emotion the brain knows. This kind of training helps us develop a powerfully clear sense of our true identity and how it still works when we are upset or suffering.

Participants generally maintain child or higher maturity, even though they may have remedial work to do with returning to joy from the big six emotions. This training is designed for partners so be sure to bring a safe partner you trust.


1) The Complete Guide to Living with Men book by Dr. Jim Wilder (This resource is out of print and must be obtained by request via email: info@thrivetoday.org)

2) The Developing Mind by Daniel Siegel, or Parenting From The Inside Out by Siegel & Hartzell (Parenting is an easier read)

3) Basic THRIVE Skills, Mastering Joy and Rest 52-week Skill Guides are distributed at Track One Training.  Extra copies available for attendees through Deeper Walk International.

4) Return to Joy: THRIVE @ Home Online Course (includes embedded lectures). Includes 6.15 hours of Jim Wilder videos and 84 discussion questions totaling 25 hours of preparation.  The THRIVE Online course is likened to getting a degree in relational skills. You have the “classroom” portion with the course while the THRIVE one-week training is your hands-on, interactive training lab. Learning the theory and applying the material to your life takes time. Don’t rush your learning experience!


Recommended (but optional) preparation
JIMTalks: Volume 24 by Dr. Jim Wilder

Turning back after hiking most of the way up a mountain when you are so close to your goal is less than satisfying, especially when you can see the peak is within reach. While Track Three is a stiff climb in relational skill training, attendees report Track Three as their favorite track because it ties together all of their previous skill training once they discover brilliant solutions to pain. At Track Three attendees learn how to clearly recognize and address the painful deficits that result from a desynchronized control center. For example, you learn to distinguish Level 3 fear from Level 2 fear. Making this distinction will determine whether people feel comforted and “seen” or disconnected and alone.

Training focuses on how to pass on the skills to others, how to enhance your nonverbal skills and how to distinguish and resolve specific pain at each of the five levels of the brain’s command center. At Track Three you not only practice the 19 skills but you train attendees in Tracks One and Two.

Track Three is for individuals who function primarily at an adult level maturity or higher. We carefully designed THRIVE Training to prepare attendees for this level of training after two years of actively building joy, practicing return to joy skills with the big six as well as complex emotions. Your THRIVEtoday Facilitator will train you in mindsight, heart-sight, resolving the five levels of pain and more.


1) Joy Starts Here: The Transformation Zone by Wilder, Khouri, Coursey, and Sutton

2) Intermediate THRIVE Skills, Mastering Returning to Joy 52-week Skill Guide is distributed at Track Two Training.  Extra copies available for attendees through Deeper Walk International.

3) Applied Strategy: Thrive @ Home Online Course (includes embedded lectures). Includes 8.25 hours of Jim Wilder videos and 122 discussion questions totaling approximately 35 hours of preparation. The THRIVE Online course is likened to getting a degree in relational skills. You have the “classroom” portion with the course while the THRIVE one-week training is your hands-on, interactive training lab. Learning the theory and applying the material to your life takes time. Don’t rush your learning experience!


Recommended (but optional) reading
-Outsmarting Yourself book by Karl Lehman, M.D.

The Anxious Organization book by Jeffrey A. Miller

Attention:  A THRIVEtoday staff member may call to verify that you are prepared for the training. This telephone call is to ensure your Thrive  Training will be a blessing rather than overwhelming and/or too strenuous. We may check your references as well.


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