28-Day Program Guide

 Day 1 am ~ Welcome!

In this session the mentee is introduced to the creator and narrator of MetaMentor, master executive coach, Tana Pesso. They are then guided to create the Change Statement which is the first of the four Key Statements that will be utilized throughout the program. The Change Statement defines the behavior, habit, or skill that the mentee will work on with MetaMentor. The purpose of this session is to clarify the difference between cause and effect or outcome in order to ensure that the Change Statement focuses on a behavior or cause, and not on an effect or end result that is desired. For example, “be more organized or productive” describes the effects or results of a behavior, habit, or skill. The Change Statement should focus on the work habit that would lead to becoming organized and productive. (4:55)

Day 1 pm ~ Change What Exactly?

This session continues refining the definition of the Change Statement to ensure that it is a single, not multiple, skill or habit. In order to establish a reliable new habit, the mentee needs to be practicing the same thing day after day. Rotating among many related behaviors will diminish the achievement of and staying power of the desired behavior change. In addition, the mentee is instructed to choose the when, where, and how they will practice their new habit each day. (3:55)

Day 2 am ~ The Carrot

The purpose of this session is to create the first of the two Key Statements that are aimed at increasing the mentee’s motivation to persevere with practicing their new habit through the 28 days necessary to establish a reliable new habit. The mentee will be guided in creating the Outcomes Statement which identifies all the positive outcomes they hope will come about when they master their new habit or skill. Later on, in the course of the program when the reasons for working on establishing the new habit may have begun to fade in the mentee’s mind, MetaMentor will revisit the Outcomes Statement in order to renew the motivation to continue until success is achieved. (5:40)

Day 2 pm ~ The Stick

In this session the mentee develops the second of the two key motivational elements, the Cost of Failure Statement, which identifies all the negative outcomes that could happen if the mentee fails to master their new habit or skill. As with the Outcomes Statement, MetaMentor will periodically guide the mentee to revisit the Cost of Failure Statement in order to renew their motivation to continue practicing their new habit daily. (3:59)

Day 3 am ~ Tactical Planning

In this session the mentee creates the fourth Key Statement, the Tactics Statement, which anticipates obstacles that may arise to practicing their new habit or skill and poses tactics for avoiding or overcoming those obstacles. As with the other Key Statements, MetaMentor will periodically revisit the Tactics Statement in order to note new obstacles and devise new tactics to ensure that these obstacles do not trip up the mentee as they try practice the new habit, skill, or behavior that they are working on.  (3:23)

Day 3 pm ~ Setting The Pace

In this session the mentee sets realistic expectations for their rate of progress through the program. This exercise serves as a hedge against unwarranted self-criticism later on when the mentee may become impatient with what they consider a slow rate of progress. In addition, two new elements of the program are introduced. At the end of each day the mentee will rate their effort that day in practicing their new habit using a grade scale of A to F.  On every fourth day the mentee will assess the reliability of their new habit as a way to assess progress and calibrate effort going forward. (4:58)

Day 4 am ~ The Program Proper Begins

The basic format for the morning session begins. The mentee starts the day by writing about when, where, and how they expect to practice their Change Statement during the day ahead.  As the program progresses, more and more elements of methodology will be integrated. In this session, the mentee also reads their four Key Statements twice over in order to become more familiar with them. (2:13)

Day 4 pm ~ Turning Up The Heat A Bit With Grades

The basic format for the PM Review sessions begins. The mentee writes about their experience practicing their Change Goal that day and grades their effort level for how hard they tried to practice their new habit that day. The Effort Level rating scale is introduced: A+ = major breakthrough, A = did everything planned to do, B = did most of what planned to do, C = did a good amount of what planned to do, D = did some of what planned to do, F = did not accomplish anything. (3:15) 

Day 5 am ~ The Power Of Visualization

To begin with the mentee takes each of the four Key Statements in turn and imagines everything in them coming to pass in their lives. The purpose of this exercise is to increase the impression and power these statements have on the mentee’s mind. As usual, the mentee is asked to write about their plans to practice their Change Goal today. Next, a new element of MetaMentor methodology is introduced. The mentee visualizes practicing the Change Goal according to the plan they have just written. Visualization reinforces the mentee’s ability to practice the Change Goal as planned by preparing the mind to follow through. (3:57)

Day 5 pm ~ Enter The Mentor

This session begins with reflection on how the day went practicing the new habit, noting whether any new obstacles arose, and devising tactics to overcome any obstacles that arose. Next, there is a discussion of the difference between rating one’s effort in trying to practice the new habit and assessing one’s proficiency in the habit itself. The goal is for the mentee to try as hard as possible to practice the habit with the assumption that practice will eventually make perfect. So, the Effort Level grade pertains to how hard the mentee tries to practice the habit and make the best effort they can, not how perfectly they execute the new behavior. Lastly, a new element of the AM session is introduced: using a virtual or visualized mentor for additional support. The visualized mentor may be an historic figure, family member, or fictional person.  (4:25) 

Day 6 am ~ Hello! Hello!! Hello!!!

The session begins with the mentee revisiting the prior day’s Effort Level grade and imagining what a great coach would say to motivate an even better effort in practicing the Change Goal in the day ahead. Next, there is an opportunity to revise the four Key Statements to make them more accurate, complete, and concise. Then, the mentee is directed to write about their plans for practicing their Change Goal today. Lastly, a new element in the AM session format is introduced: visualization. The mentee visualizes starting and then successfully completing everything they plan to do today to practice their Change Goal.  (2:17)

Day 6 pm ~ Mentor Visualization Part I

The session begins with the mentee grading their effort in practicing their Change Goal and then writing about how the day went vis a vis practicing the Change Goal. Next, there is further instruction in using the Mentor Exercise. (5:55) 

Day 7 am ~ Mentor Visualization Part II

At the beginning of this session the mentee writes about their plans to practice their Change Goal that day. The remainder of this slightly longer than typical AM session contains further instructions for practicing an expanded version of the Mentor Exercise and provides explanations of the rationale for each new element in the visualization. (8:19)

Day 7 pm ~ Habit Reliability Rating Day

 This PM Review session begins with the standard format of rating the day’s effort level and writing about the experience that day of practicing the Change Goal.  The mentee will engage in the every fourth day Habit Reliability Rating and assess whether the habit or skill they are working on has become more reliable and like second nature. The instructions for making Habit Reliability Ratings are also revisited. (2:16) 

Day 8 am ~ A Little Treat

This session begins with a pleasurable and motivational exercise where the mentee is asked to imagine life six months from now where the habit or skill they are working on has become a reliable part of their life and then visualize that every one of the positive things they listed in their Outcomes Statement has come about in their life. Next, the mentee writes about their plans for the day to practice their Change Goal and then visualize starting in on these plans and by the end of the day feeling happy and proud for having successfully completed them. This is followed by visualizing a more concise version of the Mentor Exercise. In addition, they learn that they can invoke the mentor imagery to help them during the course of the day if they find themselves having trouble practicing their new habit or skill. A new element of the AM session is introduced where the mentee imagines what a good coach or mentor might say to encourage them at this point and after writing it down, they whisper that to themselves.  (5:24)

Day 8 pm ~ A Shortie

In this very short PM session the mentee grades their effort and writes about how their day went with regard to practicing their new habit. In addition, they note whether any new obstacles to practicing their habit have arisen, and develop tactics for overcoming these. (1:39)

Day 9 am ~ How’r Ya Feeling Today?

This session begins with a new standard element in the AM session where the mentee is directed to reflect on their emotional state at the start of the day and consider its likely impact on their ability to practice their Change Goal well. If the mentee believes their emotional state could be an obstacle, they then plan on how to overcome that. Next, the mentee engages in a motivational exercise utilizing the Cost Of Failure Statement where they imagine that they do not succeed in establishing their new habit and that every single one of the negative outcomes noted in their Cost of Failure Statement actually comes to pass in their lives. The session ends with a stripped down version of the Mentor Exercise and a brief visualization of encouraging words that a great coach might say at this point which the mentee then whispers to themself. (5:06)

Day 9 pm ~ Coach’s Messages

The session begins with the standard instruction to reflect on the day’s events with regard to practicing the Change Goal, noting new problems, and devising tactics. The mentee then reflects on the most surprising thing that has happened to them so far as a result of working with MetaMentor. The session ends with an exercise of developing an envisioned coach’s responses to a variety of trends in Effort Level grades as a way of helping the mentee to enhance their own ability to coach and encourage themself to persevere.  (5:01)

Day 10 am ~ Firming The Foundation

The mentee is led through the standard AM session format with no additions or new teachings beginning with the reflection on emotional state, planning how to handle potentially disruptive feelings, giving themself an appropriate coaching message based on the recent trend in Effort Level grades, writing about the plans to practice the Change Goal, and visualizing successfully accomplishing all that was planned for the day. In addition, the mentee revisits and refreshes his or her connection to the four Key Statements by reading them aloud.  (3:19)

Day 10 pm ~ The Trigger Exercise

The session begins with the standard PM format of grading effort level and reflecting on how the day went with practicing the Change Goal. The mentee is then asked to identify the biggest obstacle to date in practicing their new habit and to write in a new way about tactics to ensure that this obstacle does not hinder their ability to work on establishing their new habit. If new tactics are identified, the mentee revises the Tactics Statement. Lastly, the Trigger Exercise, a new technique for defusing resistance to making change is introduced. The Trigger Exercise can be used throughout the day to overcome anxiety about or resistance to practicing the new behavior, habit, or skill that the mentee is working on. (9:38)

Day 11 am ~ Gaining Speed

This session moves quickly through the standard elements of the AM session beginning with reflecting on emotional state and its impact on the ability to practice the Change Goal. Next, the mentee visualizes successfully using the tactic identified in Day 10 PM for overcoming what they had identified as their greatest obstacle for practicing their Change Goal. The mentee then reviews the trend in recent Effort Level grades and writes an appropriate encouraging message. As always, the mentee writes at some length about plans for the day ahead. Lastly, the mentee visualizes the day ahead of successfully practicing their Change Goal as planned and ending the day with a feeling of satisfaction. (2:52)

Day 11 pm ~ Habit Reliability Rating Day

This session goes through the standard PM session format of rating Effort Level and reflecting on how the day went with regard to following through on plans to practice the Change Goal. In addition, the mentee sets a new Habit Reliability rating and compares that with the earlier estimate of their progress at this point. (2:56)

Day 12 am ~ Moving Right Along

The mentee runs through all the standard elements of the AM session including writing about how they feel at the start of the day and the possible impact on their ability to practice their Change Goal, running through the Mentor Exercise, anticipating times when they might need to use the Trigger Exercise and visualizing using it with ease and success, writing an appropriate coaching message and then whispering it to themself, and lastly writing about their plans to practice their new habit during the day and visualizing doing so successfully and feeling very good about their efforts at the end of the day. In addition, the mentee learns more theory about why the mind resists change and what can be done to overcome that resistance. To learn more about this read “The 12 Keys To Overcoming The Mind’s Resistance To Change.” (3:45)

Day 12 pm ~ Food For Thought

The mentee runs through the core PM techniques of reflecting on their experience practicing their new habit that day and giving themself a grade for their Effort Level. As additional food for thought, the mentee is asked to compare their current approach to mastering their new habit or skill with their best possible approach and then to think about what they would have to do in order to achieve that higher standard by Day 18. The purpose of this exercise is to motivate the mentee to amp up their effort and approach to the highest standard of excellence. (2:27)

Day 13 am ~ Stay The Course

The session begins with the recognition that the mentee is entering a particularly tricky point in the change process where they may be tempted to halt the program for one of two reasons. First, they may feel they have made sufficient progress in establishing their new habit, however it takes many more repetitions before it can be completely reliable. Second, they may have become demoralized because of a spotty record of performance and be tempted to give up on themself. Again, further repetitions of the habit will bring about the success they aspire. The mentee then reflects on their emotional state and the likely impact on their ability to practice their new habit, write their plan for the day, and assigns an encouraging coaching message based on the trend in their Effort Level ratings. Lastly, the mentee visualizes that at the end of the 28 days when they have succeeded in establishing the new habit they tell a good friend who cares about them. They envision what this friend might say to them to celebrate their success. (4:12)

Day 13 pm ~ Quick Status Check

This session engages the mentee in assessing their status about how hard or easy it is to practice and use their new habit or behavior. If necessary, they then strategize how to break out of a plateau or improve a lagging effort.  This is another hedge against disengagement in the process at a time when many may be tempted to slack off or quit. Next, the mentee reflects on their day’s experience in practicing their Change Goal and assigns an Effort Level grade. Lastly, in order to avoid discouragement and to keep the correct focus in self-assessment and activity, the mentee is reminded to continue to distinguish between assessing their effort level in practicing their new habit and the actual outcome or impact of their new behavior or habit on the real world around them. In MetaMentor the mentee should be focusing on establishing a new habit. The actual effect of that new behavior on other people, processes, and the organization is out of their control and beyond the scope of this process. (3:11)

Day 14 am ~ Mid-Point! Cheers!!!

The mentee is encouraged to recognize their accomplishment of reaching the mid-point of their MetaMentor program and to celebrate their accomplishment thus far. They engage in all the core elements of the AM session including noting their initial emotional state and the likely impact on their ability to practice their Change Goal, planning and visualizing the day ahead, running through the Mentor Exercise, and anticipating times when they might need to use the Trigger Exercise and visualizing doing so successfully. Lastly, the mentee learns more about why it is hard to make change, what underlies the mind’s resistance to change, and how the MetaMentor methodology has been designed to overcome that resistance.  (4:33)

Day 14 pm ~ Short, But Sweet

In this short session that is given by way of reward for making it to the mid-point of the program the mentee runs quickly through the core elements of the PM session by grading their effort and reflecting on their day’s experience practicing their Change Goal. In addition, as a means to celebrate and enhance their self-awareness and appreciation of the effort they have been making to achieve their goal with this program they draft an email to a friend describing their experience thus far working with the MetaMentor program. (1:57)

Day 15 am ~ Pop Quiz

The mentee runs through all the elements of the AM Check-In session without prompting. To ensure that the four Key Statements which are the foundation of the MetaMentor program remain clear in the mentee’s mind, they read them aloud once through.  (2:15)

Day 15 pm ~ Habit Reliability Rating Day

In this session the mentee runs through the standard PM Review format and also  assesses whether the habit or skill they have been working on has become more reliable. (1:49)

Day 16 am ~ Resistance To Change

In this session the mentee learns more about why the mind resists change and about the elements of the MetaMentor program that are designed to overcome that resistance. The mentee then goes through the core elements of the AM session format. (6:51)

Day 16 pm ~ Just A Hot Minute

The mentee enjoys an abbreviated PM Review session to balance out the total amount of time spent on MetaMentor since the morning session was longer than usual. (:53)

Day 17 am ~ Inspiration!

A new element is introduced into the AM Check-In session format: inspirational quotes with commentary. Then, the mentee runs through the standard core elements of the AM session format. Inspirational quotes by de Sales and Riis are read. (4:51)

Day 17 pm ~ Eye Witness Report

The session begins with some clarification of the definition of a good effort level. Then, as a variation on the standard mode of reflection and journaling the mentee is asked to imagine that a personal coach reports on their observation of their efforts that day to practice their Change Goal, offers advice to improve or keep up the good work, and says something a highly inspirational and motivational. (2:16) 

Day 18 am ~ Mudra Magic Part I

In this session the mentee learns a new element of the AM Check-In session format and create a mudra (physical representation or gesture) as a shortcut for working with the Outcomes Statement.  The mentee will first reads through the Outcomes Statement and imagine all these things coming about in their lives while noting the impact on their bodies and emotions of these visualizations. Next, the mentee creates a small hand position and motion that could represent these feelings. They finish up by running through the rest of the standard format for the morning session.  Inspirational quotes by Holmes, Lombardi, Aaron, and Tzu are read. (5:31)

Day 18 pm ~ View From Afar

In addition to running through the standard elements of the PM session the mentee is asked to reflect on any new obstacles that may have arisen, to create tactics for these, and to update their Tactics Statement, if necessary. As a variation on the standard mode of reflection and journaling the mentee imagines that two months after they complete MetaMentor  someone comments on the positive changes they observed in the mentee’s behavior and the changes in that have come about in their lives as a result of the new habit that has been established. (4:10) 

Day 19 am ~ Mudra Magic Part II

In addition to running through all the standard elements of the AM session (feeling check, planning the day ahead, Mentor Exercise, visualizing successfully starting and completing plans, coaching message creation, and hearing inspirational quotes) the mentee is led through the process of creating a mudra (physical representation or gesture) as a short cut for the second motivational Key Statement, the Cost Of Failure Statement.  Inspirational quotes by Hershier and Picasso are read. (4:45)

Day 19 pm ~ Habit Reliability Rating Day

This is an every fourth day Habit Reliability day, so in addition to the standard elements of the PM session (Effort Level grade and reflections on the day’s events with regard to practicing the Change Goal) the mentee assigns a new Habit Reliability rating. In addition, they write a note to someone who is imagined to be working on the same issue that they are and has noticed how well they are doing and asked for advice. The mentee writes tips on how to work on that issue and how to work effectively with MetaMentor. (2:51)

Day 20 am ~ Quick Step 1

This session begins with inspirational quotes by Emerson, Hesiod, and de Chardin. The mentee then runs through the standard AM session elements of noting their emotional state, writing a plan for the day, visualizing the Mentor and Trigger Exercises, and doing the mudras for the Cost of Failure and Outcomes statements. The mentee then reviews their current Habit Reliability rating in comparison with the final rating they hope to achieve and writes a coaching message geared to motivate themself to do whatever is necessary to achieve the desired final habit reliability rating. (4:03)

 Day 20 pm ~ Even Quicker Step

This is a very short PM Review session in which the mentee merely assigns their Effort Level grade and reflects on the day’s events paying special attention to any new problems that may have arisen and ways to overcome them. (:57)

Day 21 am ~ Quick Step 2

This is another speedy session to help your stay the course through to the end. The mentee is directed to quickly run through all the standard elements of the AM session. The session ends with inspirational quotes by Thatcher, Edison, Ditka, Keller, and Michener. (2:59)

Day 21 pm ~ Habit Reliability Rating Day

This is another quick session where the mentee is directed to move quickly through all the standard elements of the PM session format. The mentee briefly imagines their envisioned mentor being pleased with their progress at having reached Day 21 of MetaMentor, smiling and congratulating them. (1:36)

Day 22 am ~ Surprise

The surprise is an additional quick day. The mentee hears inspirational quotes from Rohn and Menotti, and then quickly runs through the standard elements of the AM session. (2:56)

Day 22 pm ~ No Surprise Here

This is another quick session where the mentee quickly runs through the standard PM Review format. (:59)

Day 23 am ~ Free Choice Check-In

The mentee chooses their favorite AM session format and run through it without guidance. (:28)

Day 23 pm ~ Free Choice Review

The mentee chooses their favorite PM session format to follow and runs through it without guidance. (:31)

 Day 24 am ~ Celebrating Your Key To Success

In this session the mentee is invited to take a moment to celebrate their perseverance, discipline, and accomplishment in reaching Day 24 of MetaMentor. This is done as a means to reinforce their self-image as someone who can follow through on plans. The mentee hears inspirational quotes from Truman, DeMille, and Disraeli. The standard AM session format is followed. (3:49)

Day 24 pm ~ Habit Reliability Rating Day

The mentee follows the standard PM format plus assesses whether their habit or skill   has become more reliable. The mentee is encouraged to prepare to do whatever it takes in the remaining days to achieve 80 to 100% habit reliability by Day 28. (2:37)

 Day 25 am ~ Sing A Little Song

In this session the mentee revisits the four Key Statements for the last time and mixes it up a bit by adding a melody to them and singing them instead of reading them aloud. The standard AM format is run through without doing the mudras. In addition, for the daily coaching message the mentee imagines that a great personal coach writes their coach’s message today. Inspirational quotes by Outlaw and Churchill are read. (4:37)

Day 25 pm ~ Taking Stock And Mighty Proud!

In this session the mentee reflects on what they are most proud of with regard to how they have worked with their MetaMentor change program. The mentee proceeds with all the standard elements of the PM session format. (2:23)

Day 26 am ~ Finishing Touches

In this session the mentee runs through the entire AM process on their own and then checks their version against the complete list afterwards to see if they missed anything. The point of this exercise is to be prepared to utilize this methodology in the future when needed. (2:28)

 Day 26 pm ~ You’re A Victorious Genius!

In this session the mentee runs through all the primary elements of the PM session on their own so as to be able to utilize them easily in the future, if needed. The mentee identifies whatever they need to do in the final two days of the program in order to secure a solidly reliable new habit or skill. They hear inspirational quotes from Edison and Bonaparte. (2:45)

Day 27 am ~ Knock, Knock. Who’s There? A Reliable Habit!

The mentee begins by running through the standard elements of the AM Check-In session. They then imagine that someone wants their advice on how to go about improving on the particular habit or skill they have been working on and they write about what they have discovered through this process thatt they consider to be the keys to success.  Inspirational quotes by Peale and Longfellow are read. (4:28)

Day 27 pm ~ The Quickest One Yet

This is a very short PM session with the aim of encouraging the mentee to complete the final two days of the program. The mentee runs through the standard elements of the PM session. (1:10)

Day 28 am ~ Almost Party Time!

The mentee determines what needs to be done today to ensure that they finish their MetaMentor program on a high note. They visualize a party to celebrate their effort and accomplishment and buy a card and envelope sometime during the day. They read their four Key Statements and perform the relevant mudras as well. They hear an inspirational quote from Aristotle. (4:01)

 Day 28 pm ~ Party Time For Change Masters! That’s You!!!

The mentee sets a final habit reliability rating. They write a note on the card they bought congratulating themself on their achievement, making a commitment not to let the new habit or skill slip, and noting final tips on how to ward against slippage in habit reliability in the future. They are directed to send the card by mail to themself and keep it for future reference. (4:11)


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