The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact


“The most interesting, immediately actionable book I’ve read in quite a while. I walked away with new ideas for motivating employees, delighting customers, engaging students, and even planning family vacations. If life is a series of moments, the Heath brothers have transformed how I plan to spend mine.”Adam Grant, New York Times bestselling author of GIVE AND TAKEORIGINALS, and OPTION B with Sheryl Sandberg

THINK Review

Regrets of the Dying

The five most common regrets:

  1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me. (Most people had not honored even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made.)
  2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
  3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings. (Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others.)
  4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
  5. I wish that I had let myself be happier. (Many did not realize until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits.)

We all experience days we never forget. Your first kiss, graduating from high school and/or college, wedding day, the day your children were born. Why do we remember these experiences so vividly? Because they are different from every other day. Sure, some of them are organic, natural events, but many of them are manufactured. We attach a meaning to them through the ceremonies we create. Receiving a college degree in the mail is not the same as attending a commencement ceremony.

Why can’t we have more of these wonderful moments? So many of them are created, why can’t we work harder to make more of our days memorable? It would make our families, institutions and organizations more successful and all of us so much happier. That’s the premise behind “The Power of Moments.”

This book features captivating stories of people who have created standout moments: The owners who transformed an utterly mediocre hotel into one of the most admired  properties in Los Angeles by delivering moments of magic for guests. Relief workers who beat a deadly health practice in one village by causing the locals to “trip over the truth.” The scrappy team that turned around one of the worst elementary schools in the country by embracing an intervention that lasts less than an hour.

Readers discover how brief experiences can change lives, such as the experiment in which two strangers meet in a room and, forty-five minutes later, leave as best friends. Or the tale of the world’s youngest female billionaire, who credits her resilience to something her father asked the family at the dinner table.

Chip Heath, a professor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, and Dan Heath, senior fellow at Duke University’s CASE Center, explore why certain brief experiences can jolt us, elevate us and change us – and how we can learn to create such extraordinary moments in our life and work. The brothers have written a number of enjoyable and educational books over the last decade but “The Power of Moments” is their most inspiring creation. It will make you want to create more moments for yourself and those you care about.

“Close your eyes. Call up the face of someone still alive who years ago did something or said something that changed your life for the better. Someone who you never properly thanked; someone you could meet face-to-face next week. Got a face? Your task is to write a letter of gratitude to this individual and deliver it in person. The letter should be concrete and about three hundred words: be specific about what she did for you and how it affected your life. Let her know what you are doing now, and mention how you often remember what she did.” 

Buy the book at Amazon.com

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