Joseph Grenny is a lifelong student of social science whose writings are references in major universities around the world. He is a New York Times bestselling author of eight books, including leadership, influence and communication classics Crucial Conversations, Influencer, Crucial Accountability, and Change Anything. His books are available in over 30 languages and have sold over six million copies.

Joseph is a co-founder and current board chair of Unitus Labs, an international nonprofit that has helped over 15 million of the world’s poorest to move toward self reliance. In 2015 he and his colleagues started The Other Side Academy, a 2.5-year school for those with long histories of crime, addiction and homelessness. The Other Side Academy is free, requiring only a desire to change for admission.

In April 2021, Joseph and the leaders of The Other Side Academy announced their intention to build The Other Side Village, a 400-home community for those who are chronically homeless based on principles of self-reliance and peer accountability. Joseph is married to the former Celia Marie Waldron. They have six children and eight grandchildren and live in Salt Lake City.


02:45 Introduction to Joseph Grenny

04:20 Moroni’s war on addiction

06:10 Joseph’s work with addicts. Satan makes addiction look so attractive that all of us are falling to it.

10:30 The definition of addiction and modern addictions that interrupt our ability to feel the Spirit

11:30 The word of wisdom isn’t so much about substances but the evil designs of conspiring people. People that manipulate us in order to invade our agency.

13:00 Joseph’s son Seth’s story. His addiction to heroin.

19:50 Even with Joseph’s background he couldn’t help his son with his addiction. He couldn’t understand it. He turned to the scriptures and learned profound truths from Moroni.

Saving Principles from Joseph’s book, Moroni’s War on Addiction.

  1. 26:30 Satan wins when you hide the problem so rally your troops.
  2. 32:00 It’s ok to make mistakes. You are a small-s savior not the capital-S Savior.
  3. 35:10 Victory has nothing to do with the strength of the enemy.
  4. 40:40 The best way to motivate the rebellious is to get out of God’s way.
  5. 50:00 You are commanded to feel joy while the war is raging. You do this by looking for tender mercies and practicing gratitude.

54:10 A lot of us at one point heard the phrase, “No good parent is ever happier than their least happy child.” If this is true then Heavenly Father must have a miserable life. The truth is that Heavenly Father is the happiest person.

1:01:00 Joseph shares his final testimony and how his son is doing now. He now works with hundreds of addicts at The Other Side Academy.

1:05:10 You never know how many attempts it’s going to take to overcome an addiction. There is no key. As a loved one you just have to surrender and let them deal with the consequences. It’s not your responsibility to fix or save someone.

1:08:40 What do people need from their ward or bishop that are going through addiction?

1:10:10 Showing up authentically. “I’ve sat in far too many priesthood meetings where we’re talking about abstract concepts when people are dealing with concrete problems in the room…”

1:11:10 A lot of rehabs just don’t work. The Other Side Academy isn’t your typical rehab. It’s a 2-year program, not just a 30-, 60-, or 90-day program. It’s a long-term program for long-term problems.

1:14:14 Parents of a teenage addict. What is the approach there?


Recovering Saints Virtual Conference
Moroni’s War on Addiction: A Scripture Hero’s Strategy to Win Today’s Battle for Souls
The Other Side Academy
Are we Losing?: A Gospel Perspective on Imperfect Families
Jacob’s Answer to Parental Despair: The Olive Tree and the Antichrist
Read the TRANSCRIPT of this podcast

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