Twice this week I presented my synopsis of The Power of Moments by Chip Heath & Dan Heath. One of my two audiences was made up of people who design activities for retired people – people living in independent living retirement communities. The other audience was made up of leaders of a North Texas city.
Two very different audiences. Two very different sets of needs.
But the book was a hit with both. Because both groups need help with this: how do we design memorable moments?
For the sake of this book, a defining moment is a short experience that is both memorable and meaningful. “This is a book about the power of moments and the wisdom of shaping them.”
The book is filled with great stories, from the story of Joshie, the stuffed giraffe enjoying his vacation, to the Popsicle Hotline at the Magic Castle; and many, many more.
The book states that there are four elements of a powerful moment. They are (with their descriptions):
ELEVATION: Defining moments rise above the everyday. They provoke not just transient happiness, like laughing at a friend’s joke, but memorable delight. (You pick up the red phone and someone says, “Popsicle Hotline, we’ll be right out.”) To construct elevated moments, we must boost sensory pleasures—the Popsicles must be delivered pool-side on a silver tray, of course—and, if appropriate, add an element of surprise.
INSIGHT: Defining moments rewire our understanding of ourselves or the world.
PRIDE: Defining moments capture us at our best—moments of achievement, moments of courage.
CONNECTION: Defining moments are social: weddings, graduations, baptisms, vacations, work triumphs, bar and bat mitzvahs, speeches, sporting events. These moments are strengthened because we share them with others.
They especially talk about creating these powerful moments in moments of transition, and in moments that are “first.” Such as, the first day on the job.
But, here’s what really hit me. Yes, the book has some “ideas to copy.” But the far more important response is to grasp the philosophy behind such special moments, and then design/craft/create your own defining moments.
Grasp the philosophy, and create your own special, powerful moments – even more so yes!!
And, this reminds me of the job of the listener to my book synopses (or, really, the reader of any book). You hear, you read, you listen – but then, you take what you’ve learned and put it into action. You have to take that step. And until you do, you haven’t really learned at all, have you?
Here’s my earlier blog post, with my lessons and takeaways, for this book: The Power of Moments by Chip Heath and Dan Heath – My Six Lessons and Takeaways
My synopsis of this book, with my multi-page, comprehensive handout, and the audio recording of my presentation recorded at the First Friday Book Synopsisin Dallas, is available at the buy synopsis tab at the top of this web [age. Click here for this specific synopsis, The Power of Moments. And, click here for our newest additions.