The power of believing that you can improve: Ted Talk Video

The process of remaining resilient in the midst of tough times is a complex process of coping that relies on a number of factors such as optimism, social support, and problem-centered coping. One factor identified relatively recently is a growth mindset - the belief that we can grow and learn in the midst of failure. The concept of a growth mindset was identified by Carol Dweck, a psychologist at Stanford University who has focused much of her research on motivation and success. In a 2014 Ted Talk video, Dweck discusses her research on mindsets among children and the dramatic improvements in school performance they achieved when a growth mindset was taught and reinforced. Growth mindsets ena

I Am Malala: Book Review

In the process of co-authoring Intentional Resiliency with Lynn Schmidt, I have been devouring stories of women around the world who resiliently faced significant adversity and thrived. This book is a compelling account of Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani girl who was shot point blank by Taliban gunmen in 2012 and survived to speak to the United Nations a year later about her dream for globally improving conditions for girls. Malala and her father received death threats because of their outspoken views about education for girls in a country where the Taliban military was increasingly hostile toward basic freedoms for women. Her injuries were nearly fatal with a single bullet piercing her hea

Productivity Wizard: Goal Setting & Tracking App

I am constantly in search of the best goal setting and tracking app. Generally, I find that those apps that are good at helping you identify your goals are lousy at the process of executing toward your goals. The reverse is also true: apps that are good at action planning and tracking progress are typically pretty lousy at helping you identify the goal upfront. Productivity Wizard incorporates both into an intuitive, easy-to-use app that can be accessed on an iPhone, iPad, and through the web. It appears to draw upon frameworks from David Allen’s book Getting Things Done. There are several features I really love: 1. Powerful questions When setting up goals, the questions it asks are very con

Leading Teams: Free Podcast

How can you create a high-functioning, healthy team that both achieves its task goals as well as providing a positive experience for team members? Professor Mary Shapiro answers this question in a free podcast based on her book, HBR Guide to Leading Teams. Using an interview format, Shapiro shares her insights on designing a team, as well as what to do if a team is struggling with an individual who is unable or unwilling to perform as a team member. She provides some particularly good insights on the value of creating two types of team goals: task-specific goals related to the output of the team, as well as process-oriented goals. Most teams only focus on task outcomes but neglect the impor

Headspace: Mindfulness App

Hundreds of scientific studies have concluded that mindfulness and associated practices pay big dividends to leaders who want to improve their effectiveness and focus. Of course, the big challenge is how to get into action and start building the skills needed to incorporate mindfulness practices in your daily life. Fortunately, meditation expert Andi Puddicombe developed this excellent app. The app is very easy to use. When you begin using it, Andi walks you through a simple ten minute meditation. I find myself looking forward to his upbeat, British accent on a daily basis. The app also includes some educational animation videos to teach basic concepts association with how the mind operates.

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