1st Edition

Authentic Excellence Flourishing & Resilience in a Relentless World

By R. Kelly Crace, Robert L. Crace Copyright 2020
    182 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    182 Pages 15 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Never before have the pressures of a comparative and competitive world impacted on our sense of wellbeing, particularly among young adults. Building on the principles of Giving Voice to Values, which honors the complexity and difficulty of leading with our values, this book addresses the unique challenges faced by young adults. It provides a clear process that details how to harness natural wisdom to flourish through the relentless pace and pressure of today’s world. Moving beyond mere values clarification, Authentic Excellence helps the reader to develop a deeper relationship with their values and confidently express them, and builds effective coping skills to manage the relentless noise of our comparative and competitive world.

    Authentic Excellence answers five primary questions:

    • How are young adults affected by this world of relentless change and pressure?
    • Why are young adults vulnerable to a plateau that can negatively affect their resilience?
    • What is the difference between fear-based excellence and authentic excellence and what role do values play in this distinction?
    • What is necessary to move beyond fear-based excellence and why is it so hard?
    • How do you train a deeper level of effectiveness that includes more consistent productivity, fulfillment and resilience?

    Part I: Understanding Authentic Excellence 1. Introduction: Resilience in a Relentless World 2. Values: The Ironic Precursor to the Plateau Effect 3. Stuck at Good: The Plateau Effect 4. Fear-Based Excellence: The Portal to Secondary Vulnerabilities 5. Moving Beyond Your Neurology to Authentic Excellence Part II: Training for Authentic Excellence 6. Paradigm Shift One: From Values Clarification to Values Relationship 7. Paradigm Shift Two: From Defining Worth by Equity to Defining Worth by Integrity Alignment 8. Paradigm Shift Three: From Reducing Fear through Control and Avoidance to Holding Fear Well 9. Paradigm Shift Four: From Avoidance of Hurt to Confidence in Managing Hurt 10. Paradigm Shift Five: From a Chronically Evaluative Mindset to an Expressive Mindset 11. Putting it All Together: Dynamic Blueprinting 12. Redefining Trust and Compassion: The Core of Flourishing and Resilience Part III: Special Topics 13. Values Profile of Today’s Young Adults 14. Sensitivity and Values 15. Creativity, Giftedness and Values 16. Transition and Values 17. Leadership and Values 18. Decision Making and Values 19. Team Development and Values 20. References and Suggested Readings


    R. Kelly Crace is the Associate Vice President for Health & Wellness at William & Mary, Williamsburg, VA, and Director of the Center for Mindfulness and Authentic Excellence (CMAX). He has served as director of two college mental health centers at Duke University and William & Mary. He is a licensed psychologist and co-author of the Life Values Inventory.

    Robert L. Crace is the Executive Director of the non-profit Life Values Inventory Online, Inc. He consults with creatives and young adults on concepts of values, flourishing, and resilience.

    "Authentic Excellence has been transformational on our campus – most assuredly for individual students who learn to understand and experience excellence through the lens of personal values, but also for the greater university community where we are talking now more than ever about resilience, integrative wellness, and human flourishing."

    Virginia M. Ambler, Ph.D., Vice President for Student Affairs, William & Mary

    "Authentic Excellence is a must read not only for young adults who want to flourish and thrive in life but also for the educators, friends and families who want to support them on their journey. Focusing on a values-based approach, this book is an excellent resource for all of us who are trying to lead fulfilling and purposeful lives."
    Sue Wasiolek, J.D., Associate Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students,
    Duke University

    "Fear of failure so often paralyzes our growth, personally and professionally.  Authentic Excellence offers the rare combination of wisdom and practical strategies for becoming our best selves, guided by values.  It is essential reading for young adults who want to reach their potential in a rapidly changing world."

    Christopher Adkins, Ph.D., Professor and Director of the Deloitte Center for Ethical Leadership, University of Notre Dame

    "Simply put, this book will help you lead a high quality, meaningful life. It’s tough out there, but Authentic Excellence shows you how to manage fear, adopt a resilient mindset and how to flourish. It is one of those rare books that will have a positive, long-lasting influence on your life."

    Ken White, Ph.D., Associate Dean, MBA & Executive Programs, Raymond A. Mason School of Business, William & Mary

    "There is no greater gift you can give yourself than to view life’s choices through the lens of values.  Early adulthood comes with many stressful decisions. Authentic Excellence shares a proven values-centered approach that empowers you to thrive vs. languish through your journey of gaining independence and leading your life where you want it to go."

    Joni Fedders, President, Aileron Institute