Protection creates engagement, but not in a positive way.

The Robot drives behavior, but behaviors that we are not engaged in.

Creation is the ideal source of engagement.

Orienteering is the Logic skill that we use to Create.

“You can’t get there from not here.” If we venture forth in the world with an inaccurate understanding of present reality, we will constantly meet with failure and frustration, which leads to dis-engagement.

We sometimes deny present reality because we don’t want to deal with it. Other times we tell ourselves lies or half-truths to feel better about it. There are also truths that we just don’t know.

Therefore, the first question to ask yourself is what is present reality and how accurate or complete is your understanding of it?

This is a good place to use the be Unbiased and Collaborative objectives.

We create tangible things and intangible experiences. Both can be engaging, but in different ways.

Tangible things are WHAT you are going to create. These are often expressed as goals. Goals are only engaging until you reach them. Goals without an intangible experience attached to them are less effective.

Intangible experiences are WHY you are creating. Examples could be to feel better about yourself, make a difference for others, sense of achievement or accomplishment, or to create a better working world.

It helps to understand the difference between pleasures and gratifications:

  • Pleasures are about engaging the senses and feeling emotions. The are short lived but easier to get. Eating, watching a movie, etc.
  • Gratifications are the result of higher needs, like our cognitive needs, aesthetic needs, self-actualization. These are long-term pursuits and are not always pleasurable in the moment. We feel we are bringing our whole self to the activity. Parenting, art, or sports are examples. The VIA Character Strengths Survey can be a good place to start to better understand what you personally find gratifying.

If you derive your pleasure from spending, then you can’t save. If you derive your pleasure from saving, then you can’t spend.

Happiness = Reality - Expectations is a helpful formula to keep in mind when deciding what you want to create.

To stay engaged, we need to understand when the payoff of our pursuit will show up. There are four categories:

Bad Now/ Bad Later: To be avoided, of course. Things like bad habits or actions driven by despair or apathy.

Good Now / Bad Later: In moderation, these can be fine. Splurging on something you want to buy, eating something unhealthy. We don’t have to be perfect all the time to create a good life. Also not a good source of meaningful engagement.

Bad Now / Good Later: Carrot or stick types of motivations where we endure something we don’t want to do to get a payoff down the road. The most common type of motivation used.

Good Now / Good Later: The ideal motivator but harder to find. Doing something you enjoy that brings a payoff later. People who enjoy exercise or love their job.

Develop a concrete plan that has the ability to flex and adjust as challenges are met.

We are most engaged with the challenge feels 4% greater than our abilities.