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The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, Is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal Paperback – January 3, 2005
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About the Author
Dr. Jim Loehr is Chairman, CEO, and Co-founder of the Human Performance Institute, a training company that has successfully utilized energy management technology to improve the productivity and engagement levels of elite performers from the world of business, sport, medicine, and law enforcement for over 30 years. A world-renowned performance psychologist, Dr. Loehr is the author of thirteen books including the national bestseller The Power of Full Engagement.
Dr. Loehr appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show where an entire program was devoted to his ground-breaking Energy Management training system and concepts. He has also appeared on NBC's Today Show, ABC's Nightline with Ted Koppel, The CBS Evening News with Dan Rather and CBS Morning News. Dr. Loehr's work has been chronicled in leading national publications including the Harvard Business Review, Fortune, Newsweek, Time, US News and World Report, Success, Fast Company and Omni.
Dr. Loehr has worked with hundreds of world-class performers from the arenas of sport, business, medicine and law enforcement including Fortune 100 executives, FBI, Hostage Rescue Teams and Army Special Forces. His elite clients from the world of sport include: golfer Mark O'Meara; tennis players, Jim Courier, Monica Seles, and Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario; boxer Ray Mancini; hockey players Eric Lindros and Mike Richter; and Olympic gold medal speed skater Dan Jansen.
Dr. Loehr possesses a masters and doctorate in psychology, serves on several prestigious scientific boards and is a full member of the American Psychological Association, the American College of Sports Medicine, the National Strength and Conditioning Association, and the Association for the Advancement of Applied Sport Psychology.
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There are plenty of valuable and realistic suggestions that are broadly applicable and cover many situations and contingencies. There's quite a bit of common sense, but everything is laid out in a clear and concise manner with extensive real life examples, including setbacks. Also included are templates to allow for the more obsessive and meticulous to record and document everything. Even without buying the whole concept, there is still plenty of solid advice and useful tidbits. Anyone in a situation where they feel over their head or on the way to burnout will find the book a pleasant and helpful read.
1- "We live in a world that celebrates work and activity, ignores renewal and recovery, and fails to recognize that both are necessary for sustained high performance."
2- "-Our most fundamental need as human beings is to spend and recover energy. We call this oscillation. -The opposite of oscillation is linearity: too much energy expenditure without recovery or too much recovery without sufficient energy expenditure. - Balancing stress and recovery is critical to high performance both individually and organizationally. -We must sustain healthy oscillatory rhythms at all four levels of what we term the "performance pyramid": physical, emotional, mental and spiritual. -We build emotional, mental and spiritual capacity in precisely the same way that we build physical capacity. We must systematically expose ourselves to stress beyond our normal limits, followed by adequate recovery. -Expanding capacity requires a willingness to endure short-term discomfort in the service of long-term reward."
3- "-Physical energy is the fundamental source of fuel in life. -Physical energy is derived from the interaction between oxygen and glucose. -The two most important regulators of physical energy are breathing and eating. -Eating five to six low-calorie, highly nutritious meals a day ensures a steady resupply of glucose and essential nutrients. -Drinking sixty-four ounces of water daily is a key factor in the effective management of physical energy. -Most human beings require seven to eight hours of sleep per night to function optimally. -Going to bed early and waking up early help to optimize performance. -Interval training is more effective than steady-state exercise in building physical capacity and in teaching people how to recover more efficiently. -To sustain full engagement, we must take a recovery break every every 90 to 120 minutes. "
4- "-In order to perform at our best, we must access pleasant and positive emotions: the experience of enjoyment, challenge, adventure and opportunity. -The key muscles fueling positive emotional energy are selfconfidence, self-control, interpersonal effectiveness and empathy. -Negative emotions serve survival but they are very costly and energy inefficient in the context of performance. -The ability to summon positive emotions during periods of intense stress lies at the heart of effective leadership. -Access to the emotional muscles that serve performance depends on creating a balance between exercising them regularly and intermittently seeking recovery. -Any activity that is enjoyable, fulfilling and affirming serves as a source of emotional renewal and recovery. -Emotional muscles such as patience, empathy and confidence can be strengthened in the same way that we strengthen a bicep or a tricep: pushing past our current limits followed by recovery."
5- "-Mental capacity is what we use to organize our lives and focus our attention. -The mental energy that best serves full engagement is realistic optimism—seeing the world as it is, but always working positively towards a desired outcome or solution. -The key supportive mental muscles include mental preparation, visualization, positive self-talk, effective time management and creativity. -Changing channels mentally permits different parts of the brain to be activated and facilitates creativity. -Physical exercise stimulates cognitive capacity. -Maximum mental capacity is derived from a balance between expending and recovering mental energy. -when we lack the mental muscles we need to perform at our best, we must systematically build capacity by pushing past our comfort zone and then recovering. -Continuing to challenge the brain serves as a protection against age-related mental decline."
6- "The more preoccupied we are with our own fears and concerns, the less energy we have available to take positive action."
7- "-spiritual energy provides the force for action in all dimensions of our lives. It fuels passion, perseverance and commitment. -spiritual energy is derived from a connection to deeply held values and a purpose beyond our self-interest. -Character-the courage and conviction to live by our deepest values—is the key muscle that serves spiritual energy. -The key supportive spiritual muscles are passion, commitment. integrity and honesty. -spiritual energy expenditure and energy renewal are deeply interconnected. -Spiritual energy is sustained by balancing a commitment to a purpose beyond ourselves with adequate self-care. -Spiritual work can be demanding and renewing at the same time. -Expanding spiritual capacity involves pushing past our comfort zone in precisely the same way that expanding physical capacity does. -The energy of the human spirit can override even severe limitations of physical energy."
8- "The search for meaning is among the most powerful and enduring themes in every culture since the origin of recorded history. -The "hero's journey" is grounded in mobilizing, nurturing and regularly renewing our most precious resource—energy—in the service of what matters most. -when we lack a strong sense of purpose we are easily buffeted by life's inevitable storms. -Purpose becomes a more powerful and enduring source of energy when its source moves from negative to positive, external to internal and self to others. - A negative source of purpose is defensive and deficit-based. -Intrinsic motivation grows out of the desire to engage in an activity because we value it for the inherent satisfaction it provides. -Values fuel the energy on which purpose is built. They hold us to a different standard for managing our energy. -A virtue is a value in action. -A vision statement, grounded in values that are meaningful and compelling, creates a blueprint for how to invest our energy."
9-"-Facing the truth frees up energy and is the second stage, after defining purpose, in becoming more fully engaged. -Avoiding the truth consumes great effort and energy. -At the most basic level, we deceive ourselves in order to protect our self-esteem. -Some truths are too unbearable to be absorbed all at once. Emotions such as grief are best metabolized in waves. -Truth without compassion is cruelty—to others and to our selves. -What we fail to acknowledge about ourselves we often continue to act out unconsciously. -A common form of self-deception is assuming that our view represents the truth, when it is really just a lens through which we choose to view the world. -Facing the truth requires that we retain an ongoing openness to the possibility that we may not be seeing ourselves—or others— accurately. -» It is both a danger and a delusion when we become too identified with any singular view of ourselves. We are all a blend of light and shadow, virtues and vices. -Accepting our limitations reduces our defensiveness and increases the amount of positive energy available to us."
10- "Our dual challenge is to hold fast to our rituals when the pressures in our lives threaten to throw us off track, and to periodically revisit and change them so that they remain fresh."
11- "-Rituals serve as tools through which we effectively manage energy in the service of whatever mission we are on. -Rituals create a means by which to translate our values and priorities into action in all dimensions of our life. -All great performers rely on positive rituals to manage their energy and regulate their behavior. -The limitations of conscious will and discipline are rooted in t^he fact that every demand on our self-control draws on the same limited resource. -We can offset our limited will and discipline by building rituals that become automatic as quickly as possible, fueled by our deepest values. -The most important role of rituals is to insure effective balance between energy expenditure and energy renewal in the service of full engagement. -The more exacting the challenge and the greater the pressure. the more rigorous our rituals need to be. -Precision and specificity are critical dimensions of building rituals during the thirty- to sixty-day acquisition period. -Trying not to do something rapidly depletes our limited stores of will and discipline. -» To make lasting change, we must build serial rituals, focusing on one significant change at a time."