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Cultivating Purpose

Ancient advice for modern work

Michael Puett

Michael Puett

Harvard Professor of Chinese History

Cultivating Purpose
  • Overview
  • Episodes
  • Recommended for you

Overview

We spend so much of our lives at work, but how can we fulfil our potential there and in the wider world? How can the idea of ‘purpose’ help us truly flourish in the workplace? And what can we learn from ancient Chinese philosophers to help us ‘cultivate’ this purpose?


What You'll Learn

  • The true meaning of purpose, in both life and work 
  • Why you should focus on cultivating—rather than finding—your purpose 
  • How we can apply ancient Chinese philosophy to help us flourish professionally 


Course Outline

1. What is ‘purpose’?   

What do we mean by ‘purpose’ and how might it help us in life?  

                

  1. Cultivating purpose in individuals    

Develop a sense of what you love and what you’re good at.

 

  1. The power of rituals  

What tools and rituals can we borrow from ancient Chinese philosophers to help us cultivate purpose?

 

  1. What is special about work?    

Focus on ensuring your work becomes  more than simply your livelihood.

 

  1.  Cultivating purpose at organizations  

Learn how the benefits of purpose can span beyond the individual to the organization as a whole. 

 

  1.  The individual within an organization  

Explore ways in which individuals within an organization can help the company flourish. 

 

  1.  Misconceptions about purpose  

Hear what happens when the boss’s idea of ‘purpose’ is little more than rhetoric. 

 

  1. Rituals for creating a fair workplace  

Use rituals from Chinese philosophy to break patterns of workplace discrimination.

 

  1. Rituals for designing an office that helps us all flourish  

Learn how to create a positive energy flow in the office usince Chinese philosophy.

 

  1. Rituals for working better in teams  

Hear about ways to put the ego aside and strengthen your team. 


Episodes

11 Episodes

Trailer

2min

1. What is ‘purpose’?

13min

What do we mean by ‘purpose’ and how might it help us in life? Explore how to think broadly about your goals, break out of old habits and train yourself to be something much more than you might even imagine.

2. Cultivating purpose in individuals

11min

Begin with the self, and learn to sense the complexity of the world around you. Discover ways to positively impact your surroundings, and develop a sense of what you love and what you’re good at.

3. The power of rituals

12min

What tools and rituals can we borrow from ancient Chinese philosophers to help us cultivate purpose? Train yourself to think differently and uncover new possibilities in life.

4. What is special about work?

11min

Focus on ensuring that your work becomes more than simply your livelihood, and avoid devoting years of your life to something that just makes you miserable.

5. Cultivating purpose at organizations

12min

Learn how the benefits of purpose can span beyond the individual to the organization as a whole.

6. The individual within an organization

11min

Explore ways in which individuals within an organization can help the company flourish.

7. Misconceptions about purpose

12min

Hear what happens when the boss’s idea of ‘purpose’ is little more than rhetoric.

8. Rituals for creating a fair workplace

13min

How rituals from Chinese philosophy can help us break patterns ofFind out what it means to break patterns of discrimination in the workplace, and how rituals from Chinese philosophy can help.

9. Rituals for designing an office that helps us all flourish

11min

Using ancient Chinese philosophy as a framework, learn how to create a positive energy flow in the office for an environment that nourishes creativity.

10. Rituals for working better in teams

11min

Hear about ways to put the ego aside and strengthen the working relationships across your team.

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