Meghan and Harry's 'Thrive Chapter': Why the Sussexes Are Excited to Enter a New 'Era of Visibility'

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry excel in "moments of human interaction — they need to be on the ground," Finding Freedom co-author Omid Scobie tells PEOPLE in this week's issue

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are ready to take their next steps back into an intentionally public life.

With their parental leave coming to an end, they are preparing for a busy fall and winter as many of the programs they've been working on behind the scenes kick into action.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex — who welcomed baby Lilibet Diana (a little sister for brother Archie, 2) in June — are entering "the era of visibility," Omid Scobie tells PEOPLE. Scobie co-authored Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family, which will be republished in paperback on August 31 with a new epilogue that's excerpted in this week's issue.

The couple are "really excited" about what is ahead, including working directly with causes aligned with their interests and expanding their in-person charity work through the Archewell Foundation.

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"They're a couple who do very well in those moments of human interaction. They need to be on the ground," says Scobie, who wrote the book with fellow longtime royal reporter Carolyn Durand. "They say that the proof is in the pudding, and what we are about to see is that pudding."

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For more on the lessons that the couple has learned in a tumultuous year, pick up a copy of the latest issue of PEOPLE on newsstands on Friday.

Finding Freedom, which was published last summer, had chronicled the Sussexes' whirlwind courtship and the mounting tensions that ultimately led Harry, 36, and Meghan, 40, to leave the U.K. and carve a groundbreaking path outside of royal duty.

Now, aided by the financial freedom secured by their multimillion-dollar streaming, speaking and publishing deals, the couple's energy follows a period of turmoil amid their formal departure from life as working royals and the controversies stemming from the couple's interview with Oprah Winfrey this past March.

One of the key lessons they have learned these past months is to prioritize their mental health and keep "some of the toxicity" at an arm's — and ocean's — length away.

"They seem to be existing in a different place, and that place is much healthier," Scobie tells PEOPLE. "Meghan famously spoke about that it was not enough to survive — we are now in the thrive chapter."

<a href="https://people.com/tag/prince-harry/" data-inlink="true">Prince Harry</a> and <a href="https://people.com/tag/meghan-markle/" data-inlink="true">Meghan Markle</a>
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Karwai Tang/WireImage

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With the empathy and action they hope will define their legacy, the couple shared a very personal note on the Archewell Foundation site on Tuesday.

"Though we are not meant to live in a state of suffering, we, as a people, are being conditioned to accept it," they wrote of several generation-defining struggles happening in the world right now. "It's easy to find ourselves feeling powerless, but we can put our values into action — together."

Urging followers and leaders alike to recognize and ease others' suffering, they concluded, "the decisions we make now … will prove our humanity."

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