Posts in Eesmärgid

Ebbinghaus Illusion and happiness

detsember 12th, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid, õnn, tajuvead 0 thoughts on “Ebbinghaus Illusion and happiness”

In the programme ‘The Science of Well-Being’, Laurie Santos from Yale University illustrates with the help of Ebbinghaus Illusion how our perception about happiness can be influenced by who we judge ourselves against.

In the Ebbinghaus Illusion, the orange surrounded by larger circles seems smaller than the one on the right surrounded by smaller circles despite the fact that both orange circles are exactly the same size.

We tend to make social comparisons, compare ourselves against other people. For example, if you live in a 100 m2 apartment and you are surrounded mostly by people who live in an apartment or house significantly larger than yours, you may feel dissatisfied with your apartment. Yet, if you are surrounded by people living in a flat significantly smaller than yours (e.g. 40m2), you may feel more satisfied with your house and maybe your life in general.

It’s illogical. The absolute or true size of the apartment doesn’t change, but our own and others’ perception may change depending on the context or reference point, i.e. a point to which we are judging something. And that may influence our perception of satisfaction and happiness in general.

Kindness brings happiness

detsember 11th, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid 0 thoughts on “Kindness brings happiness”

There is lots of empirical evidence suggesting that simple acts of kindness bring us happiness.

For example, researcher Otake et al. performed a study where participants were asked to keep track of every act of kindness they performed toward other people every day for one week. The study revealed that one’s sense of happiness is increased significantly by simply counting one’s own acts of kindness.


Orly Wahba founded of  Life Vest Inside with the goal to empower and unite through the power of kindness. Through Life Vest Inside, Orly encourages people to embrace the incredible power of giving and recognize that in times of hardship, kindness, like a life vest, keeps the world afloat. Orly’s award-winning short film Kindness Boomerang has been viewed more than 30 million times and it shares a simple message: kindness is contagious.

Shepard tables

detsember 6th, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid 0 thoughts on “Shepard tables”

Which table is longer? They are identical. See the video below. Although there are several videos about Shepard tables illusion, I made the video together with my son because we wanted to have fun together and experience how the experiment works.

How to explain the illusion? According to Roger N. Shepard, we are commonly fooled by our depth perception. Researchers at New York University explained that humans tend to ’interpret a drawing or image as a three-dimensional object’, rather than for what it really is. As we live in a 3D world, we automatically convert 2D objects on a page into a 3D interpretation.

We live on autopilot, our brains like to simply and generalise. Often we don’t pause to question our assumptions and thoughts. Just like we automatically misinterpret the context of the tables and therefore see the identical tabletops to be different in size, we can perceive things incorrectly and make wrong conclusions in other contexts as well.

For example, we may transfer our feelings, attitudes and behaviours from the past onto present relationships. This is often an unconscious process and can happen in various settings, e.g.:

  • A young employee is reserved in the presence of her much older male manager and expects orders from him because he reminds her of his authoritarian father. (i.e. she applies her past experience to the present which distorts her reality).
  • A person may be easily annoyed by a workmate who looks a bit like their younger sibling, who was often irritating. (i.e. the person applies her feelings of irritation from the past to his/her present workmate).

According to Shepard, “any knowledge or understanding of the illusion we may gain at the intellectual level remains virtually powerless to diminish the magnitude of the illusion.” The same applies to transference. Even if we know and understand what transference, countertransference and projection are, we may easily experience them without being aware of it.

It’s not only professionals working with people, such as psychologists, coaches, supervisors etc, who should be aware of such processes, it’s also leaders who should develop awareness and skills to manage transference, countertransference, projection and other psychological processes.

Connecting the dots

november 23rd, 2020 Posted by Coaching, Eesmärgid, mentorlus, positiivne psühholoogia 0 thoughts on “Connecting the dots”

It was in 2006 when I discovered the famous Steve Jobs’ Stanford commencement address that had a huge impact on my life. Back then I didn’t know that Steve wasn’t the kind of leader I believe great leaders should be, but he sure had courage to follow his heart and intuition. Some of my favourite quotes from the speech:

Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true. Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become.’

‘You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.’ 

Inspired by the commencement address and a Harvard University programme I attended years ago, together with Kairi Kuuskor from Bold Tuesday we delivered a practical seminar at Estonian Art Academy. The seminar was called ‘Courage to create one’s future’ and focused on two topics:

  • connecting the dots and trusting one heart and intuition in creating one’s future;
  • accelerators and brakes (or our dreams and fears, loyalties etc) and ways of releasing the latter;
  • growth support opportunities, such as mentoring, coaching and supervision.

We shared our own personal dots and pivots from the past and invited the big hall of students and lecturers to do so.

We used Bold Tuesday Vision Board Reimagined as a basis for our seminar.

Special thanks to EKA and Robert Luig for video and technical support!

Initiative ‘Back to School’

november 6th, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid 0 thoughts on “Initiative ‘Back to School’”

‘We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.’ Winston Churchill

Back to School is great initiative, which inspires cooperation between schools and organisations and helps to connect schools with people who wish to contribute to education.

I have delivered various classes at different schools all over Estonia. Today I delivered a virtual class to students of Kohila Mõisakool about the importance and skills of collaboration. In my work as a team coach and supervisor, collaboration is something we often focus on with executives and teams in coaching as well.

What are the topics that inspire you? Schools are happy to collaborate with people from different fields of life who share their skills, knowledge and experience that help students learn something useful for their future.

Some of my previous experiences from schools:

Virtual class at Salme Põhikool

1. klassiga lahkusest ja koostööst

Coachingu supervisioon

november 1st, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid 0 thoughts on “Coachingu supervisioon”

Juhtimiskonverentsil ‘Coaching 2021. PÖÖRDEPUNKT’ tutvustan coachingu supervisiooni. Keskendun konverentsil sellistele küsimustele nagu:

  • miks kasvab coachide ja coachingu tellijate seas vajadus coachingu supervisiooni järgi;
  • miks käivad ka kogenud coachid supervisioonis;
  • mida peaksid coachingu tellijad teadma coachingu supervisioonist;
  • milliseid eetilisi dilemmasid coachid kõige sagedamini coachingu supervisiooni toovad;
  • milliseid varjatud dünaamikaid coachid võivad coachingu supervisioonis avastada.

Äripäeva juhtimiskonverentsile ‘Coaching 2021. PÖÖRDEPUNKT’ saad registreeruda siin.

Coachingu supervisiooni kohta saad lugeda lähemalt ka siit.

Mida teha, kui ettevõttel või meeskonnal king pigistab?

oktoober 27th, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid 0 thoughts on “Mida teha, kui ettevõttel või meeskonnal king pigistab?”


This video is in Estonian.



Happiness 50-10-40% rule (study)

september 5th, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid 0 thoughts on “Happiness 50-10-40% rule (study)”

Lyubomirsky, Sheldon et al. (2005) suggested that there is considerable potential for people to take action to influence their own happiness. If happiness is not fully determined by a person’s genetics and circumstances, then there must be something left over for intentional behavior. The Sustainable Happiness Model distinguished among 3 kinds of influences: inherent genetic predispositions, current life circumstances, and current intentional activities.

According to the study, 50% of our happiness is effected by genes and only about 10% by life circumstances (accidents, winning a lottery etc).  The rest 40% is effected by our actions, intentions and habits and unlike the other two parts, that part is under our control.

This more recent research affirms that people can affect their own happiness, via their deliberate efforts. However, these effects tend to be smaller than they initially believed.


Happiness chemicals

juuli 27th, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid 0 thoughts on “Happiness chemicals”

Character Strenghts

juuni 23rd, 2020 Posted by Eesmärgid 0 thoughts on “Character Strenghts”

Character strengths reflect who you are at your core. They are different than your other personal strengths, such as your unique skills, talents, interests and resources. Every individual possesses all 24 character strengths in different degrees, giving each person a unique character strengths profile.

There are 6 classes of virtues that are made up of 24 character strengths:

  1. Wisdom and Knowledge
  2. Courage
  3. Humanity
  4. Justice
  5. Temperance
  6. Transcendence

It has been found that workers who use four or more of their signature strengths at work have more positive work experiences and report their work is a calling in their life.

In order to be qualified as a universal character strength, an attribute must display the following attributes characteristics:

(1) A strength contributes to fulfilment and to the good life.
(2) A strength is morally valued in its own right.
(3) Displaying a strength does not diminish others.
(4) Almost every parent wants their child to have the strengths.
(5) There are rituals and institutions within a society that support the strength.
(6) Each of the strengths is universal, valued by almost every religion, politics, and culture – now and in the past.

Via an article in the Journal of Positive Psychology, Martin Seligman laid out the basics of Peterson’s framework, some fundamental ideas that he left before his untimely death. In Seligman’s words:

‘The theory is Aristotlean, evoking the health of the golden mean: it claims that psychological health is the presence of the strengths and that the real disorders are the absence, the excess, or the opposite of the strengths.’

Peterson created a tableau, consisting of the 24 strengths, and 72 terms that represent the absence, excess, and opposites of each “asset”:


To identify your Character Strengths, take the online test available on the VIA website. The test comprises 120 questions and takes about 30 minutes. After taking the test, you will get the ranking of your 24 strengths.

See also: