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Books Summary of

The Power of Full Engagement

Managing Energy, Not Time, Is
the Key to High Performance
and Personal Renewal

Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz

Part 1: The Dynamic of Full Engagement
• Fully Engaged, Energy, Not Time, Is Our Most Precious Resources.

Bear In Mind

- Every one of our thoughts, emotions, and behaviors has an energy consequence, for better or
for worse. The ultimate measure of our lives is not how much time we spend on the planet, but
rather how much energy we invest in the time that we have.

- Managing energy, not time, is the fundamental currency of high performance. Performance is
grounded in the skillful management of energy.

- Great leaders are stewards of organizational energy. They begin by effectively managing their
own energy. As leaders, they must mobilize, focus, invest, channel, renew and expand the
energy of others.

- Full engagement is the energy state that best serves performance.

- Principle 1: Full engagement requires drawing on four separate but related sources of energy:

- Principle 2: Because energy diminishes both with overuse and with underuse, we must balance
energy expenditure with intermittent energy renewal.
- Principle 3: To build capacity we must push beyond our normal limits, training in the same
systematic way that elite athletes do.

- Principle 4: Positive energy rituals - high specific routines for managing energy – are the key to
fully engagement and sustained high performance.

- Making change that lasts requires a three-step process: Define purpose, Face the Truth,
and Take Action.

The Power of Full Engagement

Old Paradigm New Paradigm

Manage time Manage energy

Avoid Stress Seek Stress
Life is a marathon Life is a series of sprints
Downtime is wasted time Downtime is productive time
Rewards fuel performance Purpose fuel performance
Self-discipline rules Rituals rules
The power of positive thinking The power of full engagement
The Dynamics of Energy

High Negative High Positive

Angry Invigorated
Fearful Confident
Anxious Challenged
Defensive Joyful
Resentful Connected
(Unpleasant) (Pleasant)
Low Negative Low Positive

Depressed Relaxed
Exhausted Mellow
Burned out Peaceful
Hopeless Tranquil
Defeated Serene

• The Pulse of High Performance: Balancing Stress and Recovery

Bear In Mind

- Energy is simply the capacity to do work. 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

- 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.
The Dynamics of Engagement

High Negative High Positive


Unpleasant Pleasant
Energy Energy


Low Negative Low Positive

Karoshi - Death from Overwork

It is not the intensity of energy expenditure that produces

Karoshi burnout, impaired performance and physical breakdown,
but rather the duration of expenditure without recovery.
In Japan, the term karoshi means “death from overwork”
– most commonly from heart attack and stroke.

Research shows that there are five key factors:

• Extremely long hours that interfere with normal

recovery and rest patterns.
• Night work that interferes with normal recovery and
rest patterns.
• Working without holidays or breaks.
• High-pressure work without breaks
• Extremely demanding physical labor and continuously
stressful work.
• Physical Energy: Fueling the Fire

Bear In Mind

- 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 (about 2 liters) 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 90 to 120 minutes.
Strategic Eating
Eating breakfast is critically

It is equally important to eat food

that are low in the glycemic index,
which measures the speed with
which sugar from specific food is
released into the bloodstream. A
slower release provides a steadier
source of energy. The low-glycemic
breakfast foods that provide the
highest octane and longest lasting
source of energy.

By contrast, high-glycemic foods such

as muffins or sugary cereals spike
energy for short periods but prompt
a crash in as few as thirty minutes.
Even breakfast traditionally viewed
as healthy – an unbuttered bagel and
a glass of orange juice – is very high
on the glycemic index and therefore
a poor source of sustaining energy…
Even small amounts of sleep dept… have a significant impact on
strength, cardiovascular capacity, mood and overall energy levels.
Some fifty studies have shown that mental performance --
reaction time, concentration, memory and logical/analytical
reasoning -- all decline steadily as sleep debt increases.
… Naps represent a form of strategic recovery.

- Jim Loehr
• Emotional Energy: Transforming Threat into Challenge

Bear In Mind

- 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 self-confidence, 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 a 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 reneweal
and recovery.

- Emotional muscles such as patience, empathy and confidence can be strengthened in the same
way that we strengthen a bicep or tricep: pushing past our current limits followed by recovery.
• Mental Energy: Appropriate Focus and Realistic Optimism

Bear In Mind

- 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

- Physical exercise stimulates cognitive capacity.

- Maximum mental capacity is derived from a balance 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 serve as a protection against age-related mental decline.
• Spiritual Energy: He Who Has a Why to Live

Bear In Mind

- 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

- 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.

- Expending 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.
Part 2: The Training System
• Defining Purpose: The Rules of Engagement

Bear In Mind

- 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.
• Face the Truth: How Are You Managing Your Energy Now?

Bear In Mind

- Avoiding the truth consumes great effort energy. Facing the truth frees up energy and is the
second stage, after defining purpose, in becoming more fully engaged.

- 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 ourselves.

- 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 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.
• Taking Action: The Power of Positive Rituals

Bear In Mind

- 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 the 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
Sustained High Performance In The Storm
Fully Engaged
Physically Energized Mentally focused
Emotionally connected Spiritual aligned

Energy Engagement
Managing Capacity: The quantity, quality, focus, and force
of energy that is available to perform in the storm.

Primary Capacities/Skills (Big “Muscles”)

Physical Emotional Mental Spiritual
Heart and lungs Self-confidence Focus Character
Abdominals Self-regulation Realistic optimism Passion/commitment
Shoulders and back Interpersonal effectiveness Time management Integrity
Legs Empathy/caring Creativity Service to others
Supportive Habits/Skills (Small “Muscles”)
Physical Emotional Mental Spiritual
Sleep Patience Visualization Honesty
Exercise Openness Positive Self-talk Integrity
Diet Trust Positive attitude Courage
Hydration Enjoyment Mental preparation Persistence

Ritual-Building Strategy
(Examples from the book)
Targeted Muscle(s): Patience
Performance Barrier: Impatience
Value(s) driving change: Respect and kindness toward others
Expected performance consequence: More +ve energy for myself and for those around me.

Item Positive Energy Ritual Supporting the Targeted Change: Launch Date
1. 6:30 a.m. Every morning read my vision statement 4/1

2. Break every 90 minutes during work 4/1

4. Specific “emergency” ritual whenever I started felling impatient or agitated 4/1


Ritual-Building Strategy
Targeted Muscle(s):
Performance Barrier:
Value(s) driving change:
Expected performance consequence:

Item Positive Energy Ritual Supporting the Targeted Change: Launch Date

Name:____________ Week of:_____________

Directions: Rate yourself daily in each of these areas using the 5-1 scale (5= Excellent, 1= not successful).

Rituals Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Notes

Accomplishments: _____________________________________________________________________________

Additional Notes taken from Start Living with Energy by Alyssa Abbey

The Four Energies

The four types of energy are: Physical, Emotional, Mental and Spirit. And, these four currencies
are connected!
Additional Notes taken from Start Living with Energy by Alyssa Abbey

• Spiritual Energy
This energy is about inspiration, aspiration, enthusiasm, future vision and possibility,
optimism, hope, joy and meaning to life.

- Important things to improve the spiritual energy are:

1. Developing perspective on life and what gives happiness.
2. Understanding today in the context of a wider life and time-line.
3. Living your values.
4. Personal development, growth and learning.
5. Relaxation, meditation, prayer and time out in nature.
6. Seeking to understand the meaning of life.
7. Seeking a higher meaning for your life.
8. The ability to playful and laugh.
Additional Notes taken from Start Living with Energy by Alyssa Abbey

• Mental Energy
This has to do with alertness and concentration, learning, analysis, logical process, creativity
and intuition.

- Important things to maintain high mental energy are:

1. Set clear goals and objectives.
2. Be disciplined over where your time is spent.
3. Train your brain like an athlete trains muscles; challenge it consistently, but schedule regular
downtime to rest it and regain power for the next mental bout.
4. Regularly Engage in Activities that stimulate your creativity.
Additional Notes taken from Start Living with Energy by Alyssa Abbey

• Emotional Energy
This comes from relationships that give you positive feelings, connection, teamwork and
collaboration. It feels like fulfillment, satisfaction, warth, happiness, and being valued, liked and

- Important things to create more emotional energy are:

1. Building self-awareness, self-confidence and self-control.
2. Feeling empathy and seeking to understand others.
3. Ensuring others feel valued and developed.
4. Motivating and influencing others in a positive way.
5. Giving your love and energy freely.
Additional Notes taken from Start Living with Energy by Alyssa Abbey

• Physical Energy
This is represented by the four ‘S’s: Stamina, Strength, Suppleness, and Speed. It’s a relaxed
bodily readiness, quickness, lightness, feelings of physical confidence and wellness.

- Important things to maintain high physical energy are:

1. Good quality sleep.
2. Regular relaxation.
3. Good nutrition.
4. Physical exercise that enhances cardiovascular endurance, strength flexibility and speed.
Map of Consciousness Additional Notes
by David Hawkins. taken from
David Hawkins books

This map clearly

demonstrates that the
energy currencies of
Spiritual, Mental, Emotional
and Physical are connected.

Any activity that is above

200 points in the log column
is charging up the energy,
and below that is
discharging the energy.

To a great extend, that this is

just like the filling the
leaking bucket challenge...
Just that for personal energy
bucket, the size is not fixed,
and become bigger or
smaller depends on
individual development
Additional Notes taken from Self-Hypnosis Revolution by Forbes Robbins Blair

In his book, Self-Hypnosis Revolution, Forbes Robbins illustrate on how to re-program

the mind for success in every area, (Physical Wellness, Mental Wellness, Career &
Finances, Relationships, Spirituality), of our life while we go through our daily
routine. Everything we do, including chores and everyday tasks, suddenly become
potent opportunities for self-empowerment! We can practice this simple, powerful
method while we take out the garbage, brush the dog, drive to the store, clean the
house, or during just about any other activity.

The idea is to make every activity to associate with a positive thinking/affirmation,

write it down onto the paper and memorize it. After that it would automatically
become a “Ritual-like” activity that help to charge up the energy instead of draining it,
as some of the activities were not so interesting….
Additional Notes taken from Self-Hypnosis Revolution by Forbes Robbins Blair
Program Planner (Example from book)
Target Area: Mental Wellness
Start Date: End Date:
Activity Key Associations Self-Suggestion

1. Arising Action, volition “I take action in order to establish

and maintain health thinking

2. Communicating Understanding, Information, “I establish and maintain excellent

rapport rapport with all level of my mind for
balance and well-being.”

3. Eating Assimilation, thoughts, beliefs “I chew on thoughts and beliefs that

uplift my mind and emotions.”

4. Cleaning Purification, order, “I clean my thoughts of

maintenance accumulated confusion and I restore

5. Using the Toilet Release, elimination “I let go of wasteful thoughts,

beliefs, and behaviors.”

6. Sleeping Restoration, processing “I process all thoughts and

emotions to create total mental
(going to sleep) wellness.”
Program Planner
Target Area: Mental Wellness
Start Date:
End Date:

Activity Key Associations Self-Suggestion

Summary of all summaries

1. Live a balanced life, which includes Physical, Mental, Emotional and


2. Consciously design your personal “Rituals” which can be use routinely

and effortlessly in the day to day activities. It is a very effectively way to
get the messages across to the Subconscious Mind with the right Intention.

“If you can think it, you can do it.

If you can visualize it, you can become it.
Where your imagination leads, your reality will follow...”
- unknown