Coaching Toward Happiness - January 2006

1. January 20th Invited Lecture by Chris Peterson, Ph.D.
2. About Chris
3. Registration and Other Bullet Points
4. Special Interest in the VIA--Need Volunteers
5. For Working Coaches and Consultants--Getting Business
6. Upcoming training and speaking


A Note From the Editor: Ben Dean, Ph.D.

Dear Coaching Toward Happiness Readers, Greetings!

Welcome to the first issue of 2006 of the Coaching Toward Happiness newsletter!

1. January 20th Lecture by Chris Peterson, Ph.D.

January's highlight is a live, interactive 80-minute call with Chris Peterson, Ph.D.--the world's leading expert on positive psychology's character strengths. Even if you're a seasoned veteran, there will be new material here. Seating is limited. Here are the details:

The Call: VIA Classification of Strengths and Virtues: An Overview
With: Chris Peterson, Ph.D., University of Michigan
Date: Friday, January 20, 2006
Time: 1:05 pm to 2:30 pm Eastern (New York Time), 6:05 pm to 7:30 pm GMT
Format: Lecture/Q&A's
Recording: Will be available. Information to be posted at the website.

1. If you are new to the VIA, this will be an introduction.
2. If you are a seasoned veteran: I can only tell you, I've seen the power points for Chris' call. They're completely new. And Chris is bringing his latest thoughts and research.

2. About Chris

Christopher Peterson is Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan, where he has been the Director of Clinical Psychology Training and has held the Arthur F. Thurnau Professorship, an award given to honor teaching. On two occasions, a course he has taught has been named the "best university course" at the University of Michigan. Chris has has a long-standing interest in personality and adaptation. He is the author of more than 200 publications, and he is listed by ISI as among the world's most cited psychologists and psychiatrists during the past twenty years. Peterson's most recent book, with Martin Seligman, is Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification (2004; Oxford University Press & American Psychological Association). He is a leading figure in positive psychology and has been a driving force in the development of the field.

If You Can't Attend--The Recording

This call runs Jan 20 from 1:05 pm to 2:30 pm Eastern (New York Time) or 6:05 pm to 7:30 pm GMT. It will be interactive and the last 20 minutes, at least, will be reserved for questions.

If you cannot attend, the call will be recorded. Within the next week, it will be online at our website and by audiopodium. So you'll be able to hear the call 24/7.

Old Pros

Take the Strengths Survey again--even if you feel very familiar with the concepts. Scores are malleable. Theoretically, strengths are as well. See how yours have changed. Take it again over the next two weeks.

If You're New

If you've never taken the Values in Action (VIA) Strengths Survey, take it at sometime over the next few weeks. The link for it is in the top center of the home page.

Be sure to look not only at your top five strengths, but to find the rank order of your full 24 strengths. I just noticed that the display of the results has changed. Now when you look at the survey results and see the rank order of your 24 strengths, the visual display gives unusual prominence to the way in which your score compare to those of others (other web users, others in your zip code or educational group) who have taken the test. I believe that Chris (and Marty) would say that in this case, these comparisons are virtually meaningless and you should ignore them. Just pay attention to the rank order of your own strengths. Let's ask Chris on the call.

Worth Remembering

The development of the Values in Action (VIA) Strengths Survey was funded by the Manuel D. & Rhoda Mayerson Foundation. Due to the generosity of Neal Mayerson and the Mayerson Foundation , the Survey is freely available world wide at no charge.

4. Special Interest in the VIA--Need Volunteers

If you have a special interest in and knowledge of the VIA, and can be on the call. And if you'd be willing to be on the unmuted line from a corded phone--silently--to ask questions as needed, please email me with your contact info and background.

5. For Working Coaches and Consultants--Getting Business

This will understandably not be of interest to all CTH readers. Nor should it be. But to those readers who use positive psychology routinely in their work and are self employed or work in large organizations, an issue of great interest is how do your present these ideas in an effective way to decision makers?

How do you show an individual coaching client paying out of pocket that Positive Psychology-based interventions matter?

How do you present the benefits of your work to C-level officers, or HR, or corporate or non-profit boards? How do you tie Positive Psychology based work with the issues that are on the "front page" of those whom you would serve? How do you make this case to your principal or Dean or Divison Manager?

Well, collectively within our readership we have many of these answers.

If you have had success with a particular audience in presenting the value of positive psychology in this way, could you please write me--with POS PSYCH WORK in your subject line?

Include your contact information and an outline of what you do. Indicate (a) whether I can share your ideas with our readers or (b) whether you would be interested in being included on a CD Interview with other leaders on this topic (b) or whether you would prefer I keep your email confidential (c) whether we can contact you. or whether I can ever share your idea, with attribution, in any setting--even in exchange for other ideas.

6. Upcoming Training and Speaking Schedule

Ben Dean Ph.D.,

Ben is a psychologist, coach, and the founder of MentorCoach LLC. He speaks on coaching throughout the US and publishes two free coaching e-newsletters: "The Therapist as Coach" for helping professionals ( and "The eCoach Newsletter" for interdisciplinary professionals ( Coaching since 1981, he is a Master Certified Coach, the highest designation of the International Coach Federation. From 2003-2005, with Dr. Seligman, Ben co-founded and served as CEO of Authentic Happiness Coaching LLC He lives in suburban Maryland (US) with his wife, Janice, and their two children.

Dr. Dean founded MentorCoach in 1997. It is an internationally recognized coach training school focused on training helping professionals to develop rewarding coaching practices.

The Spring MentorCoach Training Programs begin (via teleconference) on
January 27, 2006 at 12:00 pm Eastern (New York Time) 5:00 pm GMT
March 1, 2006 at 12:00 pm Eastern (New York Time) 5:00 pm GMT
March 1, 2006 at 8:00 pm Eastern (New York Time) 1:00 am GMT
For details, click here.

Q&A Call Tues, 1/24/06 at noon and 8:00 pm
Eastern (5:00 pm and 1:00 am GMT) Details, email:

Blue Sky Visioning Master Class
With Ben Dean and Anne Durand begins January 25, 2006.
12 Wednesdays at 1:00 pm Eastern (NY time) 6:00 pm GMT.
Creating a very large, audacious five-year vision for your life.
Details at

Blue Sky Visioning Free Question-and-Answer Call
Free one-hour, question-and-answer call on the Blue Sky Visioning Class on Friday, Jan. 20, 2006 at 5:00 pm Eastern (New York Time); 10:00 pm GMT.

COACHING AND POSITIVE PSYCHOLOGY MASTERCLASS with Alex Linley, PhD Alex edited (with Stephen Joseph) the book Positive Psychology in Practice. A 12 week class beginning in February. Meets on Thursdays from 11:00 am -11:59 am Eastern (New York time) (4:00 pm - 4:59 pm GMT). Start date and full class description to be announced later at

CTH Speaking Schedule
Ben Dean, Ph.D.

Ben will be speaking on "Coaching and Positive Psychology" in
Baltimore, MD (2/10/06)
Philadelphia (2/12/06)
Dallas (3/10/06)
Houston (3/12/06)
Psychotherapy Networker Symposium, Washington, DC (3/17/05-3/19/05)

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