The Progress Principle:  Everything we do is done because we believe, consciously, or more often subconsciously, that the projected consequences of those actions will be us feeling the right mixture of six core feelings, feelings I call:

The Six Ps of Progress       Peace of Mind




                                                Pain Avoidance


We project consequences based on past experiences, education, the influence of others, and our imagination.  

Projected consequences are the results we think will occur.

We project consequences, we take the action, and then we perceive the actual consequences.  The actual consequences may not be what we’d expected the consequences would be, but there are always consequences, and some blend of the Six Ps of Progress is experienced. 

What makes The Progress Principle a challenge is that feeling the right blend of the Six Ps of Progress is often not achieved when the feeling of them is the goal.  The right blend is more often felt as a by-product of working toward and attaining a goal.  This is why we are compelled to:

-        Strive for Significance

-        Pursue a Higher Purpose

-        Craft and Commit to Goals

-        Work to Progress.

I arrived at The Progress Principle as well as the Six Ps of Progress after spending years aggressively researching the works of many of the world’s top minds on the subjects of motivation and commitment.  In my studies I found myself leaning heavily on the work of Austrian psychiatrist and neurologist Viktor Frankl, the founder of Logotherapy. 

“For the meaning of life differs from man to man,  from day to day and from hour to hour.

What matters, therefore, is not the meaning of life iin general but rather the specific meaning

of a person's life at a given moment.”                  -- Viktor Frankl

I believe it is through our desire to feel the Six Ps of Progress, mixed with our belief in how to feel them, that we establish what Viktor Frankl calls our “meaning” at any given moment.


Contributed by:  Dean Lindsay, Award Winning Speaker and Author of The Progress Challenge & Co-Author of Stepping Stones to Success   

Dean Lindsay, Sales and Leadership Speaker