Interests, Abilities and Accomplishments

A Life of Meaning
• What is your life-calling?
– The thing that you can do that you would be
most true to who you are.
– Connection with
• Your own inner experience of what is most
valuable and important
• A true sense of connection with the larger world
– Interests, abilities, and talents combine to
create your life calling.
How do you make lives of
others richer?
The Self-Concordant Calling
• When have you been at your best:
– Feeling a connection with who you are at your
deepest and most whole?
– Feeling a connection with society around?
“You could say I have worked every day of
my life. And you could say with equal
justification that I never worked a day.”
How do People Change?
Three Theories . . .
• Change comes from awareness &
understanding of the past . . .
• Change comes from the here & now:
changing and rewards & punishments.
• Change comes from utilizing past and
present to create a vibrant and
motivational picture of the future.
Our Understanding
• Of these theories is:
– The weakest influence on current behavior is
the past.
– The present rewards are much stronger.
– But the image of the future is what empowers
peak performance
• Focus attention on a positive future.
Image of the Future . . .
• The Placebo Effect
– Belief in a positive future for oneself produces
a powerful healing effect
• The Pygmalion Effect
– When others believe in us, we perform at our
Principles of Future Utilization
• Questions are interventions
• Questions elicit stories
– Stories can be about problems & failure
– Stories can be about positive actions
• Our stories dispose us toward action
• Powerful stories inspire powerful actions.
What you seek, you find
• Problem - focused questions discover
• Solution-focused questions discover
• You will discover what you look for!
What kinds of questions?
• When have you experienced something
powerful and unforgettable?
• What helps you perform well?
• When have you seen the best of . . .?
• Example: Poor customer service . . .
– “Tell me a time when you saw really great
customer service?”
Four Powerful Questions
• Exception questions: Describe times when
you have been at your best
• Goal questions: If a miracle happened and
your goals were accomplished, what will
be different
• Scaling questions: Rate from 1 - 10
• Circular question: How will others notice
when you have achieved your goal?
Turn Complaints into Goals
• We have terrible
customer service
• We want to have
fabulous customer
• I am out of shape and • I want to run a 10-K
• My partner and I don’t • I want to feel close and
respectful to my
The Power of the Future
• Motivation comes from:
– A compelling image of the future, and
– A belief that the image can be reached
• Motivation = Attractiveness X Likelihood of
Why is the goal worthy?
• List the advantages of achieving the goal.
• Ask yourself how others would benefit.
• See the goal as already achieved. Ask
yourself: “How does this help?”
– If we came to work tomorrow and the goal were
achieved, how would that be good?
What gives you confidence?
• When have you done something like this
– Even in a small way?
• When have you accomplished other
worthy goals?
• How did you do that?
• Appreciative, focuses on past successes,
potential and possibilities.
– “I now perceive an immense omission in my
Psychology. The deepest principle of human nature is
the craving to be appreciated.” – William James
• Future oriented
– “A vivid imagination compels the whole body to obey
it.” – Aristotle
Commit to Excellence
With fitness you can be involved
or you can be committed. Just
like ham and eggs. The chicken
was involved, the pig was
You have to be like the pig.
— Martina Navratilova
Commit to excellence
Just do your best;
it is all you can do..
Don’t ask how; just begin
and do it now.
The world waits for you.
—Harold Whaley

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