The Avive la Vie Way of Life Explained

Experience – Connect — Belong

The prosperity of prioritizing connection with self and others

This is the Avive la Vie mode of life!
And yet, something has kept us apart …

We’re conditioned to correct ourselves

Growing up, we were led to believe that we needed to monitor ourselves to belong. The anxiety born out of constant critiquing, fixing, and worrying has become a way of life.

Most of us didn’t learn how to attune to the emotional body

We are seeking our sense of love and value

We are feeling creatures. It hurts. We’re scared, sad, angry — we’re constantly told, “Don’t be (fill in the blank)”. With the thousands of denied, unacknowledged feelings come the message sent directly to our nervous system: “You don’t matter. You’re not loveable or valuable enough to deserve attention for just being you.” Whenever our feelings are not attended to, it robs us of connecting with our innate and foundational sense of courage, resilience, love, and value.

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To heal, we must claim our patterns and prepare to make a monumental yet straightforward shift into a new way of living.

The shared patterns that have created our suffering:

First, we’ve been conditioned to live in a correction way — we have believed that we are never quite enough to truly belong.
Second, our thought patterns and biological chemistry have become habitual as we fear being rejected by others.
Third, we even fear our own inner experience, and we try to escape this painful state of self-rejection.
Fourth, we adapt to try to feel better, so we attempt to belong by developing (albeit unconsciously) false belonging habits.

The False Belonging Habits that plague our lives

False belonging habits are attempts to belong when we don’t actually believe we do. What all false belonging habits have in common is that they reinforce the belief that our sense of belonging, love, and value comes from monitoring ourselves, changing our behaviors, and meeting the expectations of others. Ouch.

Here are the Six False Belonging Habits


I confuse love and value with my accomplishments. Success means I have value.


If I prioritize others over myself, I believe I’ll be loveable and valuable.

Pushing Love Away

I have learned to believe that love is fleeting and cannot endure hard times. Because I think love just comes and goes, I must keep my guard up in anticipation of love leaving me.

Getting Lost in Anxiety

If I anticipate bad things, I can avoid the bad outcome or at least fix it when it happens. I get my sense of value from being hyper-vigilant and in charge.

Rejecting feelings

If I manage my unacceptable emotions, I can be loved and valued because I believe only the “nice” parts of me are wanted and loveable.


If I make the right decisions, only then I can be loved and valued. Making the wrong decisions means I will be kicked out of the tribe.

Healing our false belonging habits and finding connections together

We crave attuning to ourselves and coming together in connection, community, and a deep sense of belonging.

To begin, we must prioritize the connection to self

In the Avive la Vie mode of life, when triggered we gain the knowledge and capacity to attune and attend to the emotional body immediately.  

Through loving attention and calm presence, we show ourselves and each other that our feelings are valid, that we are worthy, and that we can be connected and emotionally safe even after feeling triggered.

Furthermore, we must gain the ability to restore the broken connections 

First, we value our emotional body. We listen to our feelings, and we attend to the truth about what is within us right here and now.

Second, we practice this profound presence, and we reestablish our connection to our innate sense of belonging, love, and value.

Third, we extend genuine emotional empathy to others, making a safe space for ourselves and others to explore new ways of connection.

Fourth, we practice authentic relationships and communication, which builds the strength and trust for fully embracing this new way of living.

About Your Guide

JF Benoist is a celebrated author, workshop leader, speaker, and mental health pioneer with over twenty years of experience counseling those grappling with mental health, addiction, and relationship issues.

In 2011, JF co-founded The Exclusive Hawaii, a holistic addiction treatment center. Based on years of innovating new ways to resolve core trauma, Benoist created the therapeutic methodology Experiential Engagement Therapy™.

His bestselling self-help book Addicted to the Monkey Mind: Change the Programming That Sabotages Your Life has sold over 40,000 copies. JF is a Certified Option Process Mentor/Counselor (Socratic dialogue methodology). Involved for 27 years in The Mankind Project, a nonprofit organization that promotes men’s personal growth, JF has served for many years as a leader of international retreats.

While running an addiction treatment center for 12 years, JF repeatedly witnessed his clients’ lack of sense of belonging and connection and how it interrupted their access to happiness.

Avive la Vie was created to fill an essential need

No matter what struggles with which we are faced, the common denominator is that we often feel deeply disconnected from our true selves and from each other. Sometimes we don’t even realize it. We are believing we don’t matter, we’re not enough, or it’s the external situation that needs to be changed. Really, we crave a profoundly attuned connection. That is why Avive la Vie was born.

Avive la Vie is much more than learning skills to achieve true fulfillment. It’s about shifting from the conditioned mind of correcting ourselves in order to believe we belong and instead pivoting to consistently prioritize the genuine connections that we so deeply desire.

Avive la Vie was created to be a way of life in which we prioritize the connection to ourselves and others. Once we do, we reconnect with our true essence and our innate sense of resilience, courage, love, and value. Avive la Vie is a life-changing adventure in belonging.

Getting to Know JF

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The Avive la Vie Movement​

What Avive la Vie helps build

Connection used to be a given in our Western society – from block parties to Lion’s Club meetings to attending weekly church or temple. As we’ve progressed technologically, connection (especially in person) has become an unfortunate casualty. Yet, this foundational need for connection – the longing to belong – hasn’t disappeared.

We’ve seen this repeatedly in our decades of mental health work. A true sense of belonging can cause massive, positive ripple effects in a person’s life and in the world. Avive la Vie is a proven method to help each of us reconnect with this powerful way of living.

The book

Avive la Vie – An Adventure in Belonging (coming out in 2024.) The book identifies which of the six false belonging habits we each follow and how we have been disconnecting from our authentic selves. Through relatable stories and simple exercises, we see and understand these habits and, in their place, how to utilize the tools to create true connection and belonging.

Avive la Vie 

Experience – Connect – Belong

The online groups and retreats open the door to creating profound connections in our daily lives. These groups connect people with similar interests and passion projects – like hiking, starting a business, or creating a community garden. No matter the activity, the overarching focus of the gatherings is making meaningful, life-enriching connections.

Join A Complimentary Session!

You are invited to be a participant on The Avive la Vie Talk Show group experience. A gentle, direct, joyful connection.

Note: By participating in this free class, each participant gives permission to record the session for use in producing The Avive la Vie Talk Show.