SUSAN DAVID PHD

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Topics: Emotional Agility, Human Motivation, Mindset

Susan David is an award-winning psychologist who applies her knowledge of emotions, human motivation, and change to individuals and organizations.

David studies the role of emotions in our everyday lives, and describes the psychological skills critical to thriving in times of complexity and change. She identifies four key concepts in emotional agility: showing up – discovering what our negative emotions can tell us what we care about; stepping out – recognising who is in charge, the thinker or the thought; walking your why – what it is that enables us to have our own compass; and moving on – infusing value into your mindset: “I want to” rather than “I have to”.

THE VISIONARY BEHIND EMOTIONAL AGILITY

Susan David, Ph.D. is one of the world’s leading management thinkers and an award-winning Harvard Medical School psychologist. Her #1 Wall Street Journal bestselling book, Emotional Agility based on the concept that Harvard Business Review heralded as a Management Idea of the Year and winner of the Thinkers50 Breakthrough Idea Award, describes the psychological skills critical to thriving in times of complexity and change. Susan’s TED Talk on the topic of emotional agility has been seen by more than 8 million people. She is a frequent contributor to the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and guest on national radio and television.

Named on the Thinkers50 global list of the top management thinkers, Susan is a sought-after keynote speaker and advisor, with clients that include the World Economic Forum, EY, United Nations, Google, Microsoft, NASDAQ, and many other national and multinational organizations. She is on the faculty at Harvard Medical School and is a Cofounder of the Institute of Coaching (a Harvard Medical School/McLean affiliate).

EMOTIONAL AGILITY

GET UNSTUCK, EMBRACE CHANGE, AND THRIVE IN WORK AND LIFE

The way we navigate our inner world – our everyday thoughts, emotions, and self-stories – is the single most important determinant of our life success. It drives our actions, careers, relationships, happiness, health; everything. For example: Do we let our self-doubts, failings, shame, fear, or anger hold us back? Can we be determined, persevering toward key life goals, but just as importantly, have the insight and courage to recognize when these goals are not serving us, and adapt?

In EMOTIONAL AGILITY: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and Life, Susan David, Ph.D. a renowned psychologist and expert on emotions, happiness, and achievement, draws on her more than twenty years of research to show that emotionally agile people are not immune to stresses and setbacks. The key difference is they know how to gain critical insight about situations and interactions from their feelings, and use this knowledge to adapt, align their values and actions, and make changes to bring the best of themselves forward.

Emotional agility is a process that enables us to navigate life’s twists and turns with self-acceptance, clear-sightedness, and an open mind. The process isn’t about ignoring difficult emotions and thoughts. It’s about holding those emotions and thoughts loosely, facing them courageously and compassionately, and then moving past them to ignite change in your life.

In EMOTIONAL AGILITY, Dr. David shares four key concepts:

  • Showing Up: Instead of ignoring difficult thoughts and emotions or overemphasizing ‘positive thinking’, facing into your thoughts, emotions and behaviors willingly, with curiosity and kindness.

  • Stepping Out: Detaching from, and observing your thoughts and emotions to see them for what they are—just thoughts, just emotions. Essentially, learning to see yourself as the chessboard, filled with possibilities, rather than as any one piece on the board, confined to certain preordained moves.

  • Walking Your Why: Your core values provide the compass that keeps you moving in the right direction. Rather than being abstract ideas, these values are the true path to willpower, resilience and effectiveness.

  • Moving On: Small deliberate tweaks to your mindset, motivation, and habits – in ways that are infused with your values, can make a powerful difference in your life. The idea is to find the balance between challenge and competence, so that you’re neither complacent nor overwhelmed. You’re excited, enthusiastic, invigorated.

Drawing on her deep research, decades of expert consulting, and her own experience overcoming adversity after losing her father at a young age, Dr. David shows how anyone can thrive in an uncertain world by becoming more emotionally agile. Written with authority, wit, and empathy, EMOTIONAL AGILITY serves as a roadmap for real behavioral change — a new way of acting that will help you to reincorporate your most troubling feelings as a source of energy and creativity, and live the life you want. EMOTIONAL AGILITY will help you live your most successful life whoever you are and whatever you face.

We had such an amazing experience!  Thank you.  I had a good feeling about her involvement from the beginning, and the outcome was better than I could have hoped for. She really reached our participants ‘in their hearts’.  – Mike Vierow, McKinsey & Company

The wisdom of Susan David’s innovative insights is only made more impressive by its practicality.  Her deep understanding of psychology is matched with clear, real-world steps to more effective leadership.
Helen Clark, 27th Prime Minister of New Zealand, UNDP Administrator (2009-2017)

Susan’s mastery of the virtual format was evident at numerous outstanding 2020 events.

VIRTUAL FORMAT: MASTERY

“This is exactly what people need. An inspired choice!”
“I have never actually experienced a session like this with someone who is able to be so authentic
and talk so beautifully about compassion, courage and connectedness during these complex times.
Obviously, her intelligence is there for all to see, but her authenticity and emotions radiated from
her! I wish I knew more people like her.” – GOLDMAN SACHS

“The session with Dr. Susan David was remarkable. Thank you for bringing that to me. It was incredibly
powerful and practical.” – GOOGLE

“You were exceptional. Your ability to hold space for so many hundreds of people over a broadcast is beyond the typical reach of humans I’ve met. It was awe-inspiring to watch that and to feel throughout the experience.“ PHILL NOSWORTHY – GITHUB ANNUAL LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE