Centre for Continuing Education

Build a Success Mindset with Positive Psychology Course

Psychology. Explore the human mind.

Learn Psychology the smart way with Psychology courses at CCE, the University of Sydney.

Eleanor Shakiba
Eleanor Shakiba is an expert in ‘people skills’. She has trained over 49,000 people in the skills of breakthrough communication. She has been teaching at the Centre for Continuing Education for over ten years.

Eleanor 's qualifications include a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Anthropology, Graduate Certificate in Applied Psychology, Graduate Diploma in Adult Education, Master Practitioner and Trainer certifications in Neuro Linguistic Programming, accreditation to administer MBTI and DISC psychometric instruments and LEADR training in mediation. She writes and teaches in the areas of applied psychology, communication and conflict resolution.

Do you aspire to achieve greater things in your life? Would you like to feel more in control of your own destiny? Or would you like to master ‘positive thinking?’ D.I.Y. success coaching can help you do it. Learn how to use solution focused coaching techniques to transform your results in the world. Create a clear vision of what success means to you. Set – and commit to – highly motivational goals. Shift your patterns of thought and behaviour, so you can achieve those goals. Overcome challenges by directing your attention towards solution-finding. Reframe your negative self-talk and make your internal dialogue more supportive. Try out ways of thinking, speaking and behaving which accelerate change and success.


This is an introductory level course. It presents a range of robust, evidence-based techniques from coaching psychology and positive psychology in an accessible, experiential way. The presenter will introduce you to theory, principles and processes using mini-lectures and video examples. You will also participate in written exercises, group discussions and small group activities. The aim of this approach is to give you practical experience in using self-coaching techniques. You will gain the most from this class if you are prepared to participate, ask questions and learn from you classmates.


You’ll come out with tools for changing your own thinking and behaviour using coaching psychology. You’ll see how to use solution focused coaching techniques on yourself. The practical focus means that you will be interacting and completing activities throughout the class. Learn to:

  • Understand what being ‘solution focused’ means
  • Use techniques from coaching psychology to define and achieve success goals
  • Identify your strengths and work out how to capitalise on them
  • Boost your motivation levels by building 'creative tension'
  • Shift ‘negative’ thinking patterns and internal dialogue using reframing techniques
  • Use solution focused approaches to become a more resilient and success-orientated thinker

What topics will you cover?

This is a non-assessable, introductory level course. You’ll be introduced to basic coaching models and tools in an accessible format. This will include group activities and written exercises. Topics you will cover are outlined below.


What is solution focused coaching?

Find out what solution focused coaching is and how it developed. Discuss how being solution focused is different to taking a ‘problem solving’ approach. Define key terms and principles. Talk through the benefits and limitations of self-coaching using the solution focused method. Explore key principles of the solution focused approach. These include establishing long-term goals focusing on strengths, challenging limiting assumptions, directing your attention to the future rather than the past, defining your ideal success state before working out how to achieve it, asking solution focused questions and using cognitive reframing techniques.

Understanding what ‘success’ means to you

Until you’re clear about what you want from life, you’ll find it hard to achieve success. That’s why D.I.Y. coaching starts with an exploration of your values, purpose and goals. Clarify what success means for you. Learn how self-coaching can help you achieve directed, purposeful change which supports that success. Set long-term (distal) and short-term (proximal) goals which align with your desired success state.

Using the three step coaching model

In order to create your desired success, you’ll need to make changes in your thinking and behaviour. Achieving those changes will require motivation and focus. Learn how to use ‘cognitive dissonance’ to motivate yourself to take change-focused action. Use Egan’s skilled helper' process to structure a self-coaching session. This process enables you to define your current reality, contrast it with a more desirable future state and build an action plan for closing the gap and achieving success.

Getting clear about your current reality

Self-coaching works by generating ‘creative tension’. This increases your desire for change. To build creative tension, you need to compare your current reality with your desired success state. Step one, is taking a realistic look at how things are in your life right now. Learn how to do this by mapping out the internal and external elements of your current situation. Use ‘clean language’ techniques to explore your assumptions about your present limitations and potential.

Creating a compelling vision of your desired state

Once you’ve assessed your current reality, your next step is to define what your ideal future state will be like. This helps you direct your attention towards success. This step is not about generating possible solutions or action steps. It’s about clearly defining your target outcome. Hear how to set ‘approach goals’ in order to do this. Learn how these goals are different to ‘avoidance goals’ and how that difference impacts on your motivation levels. Discuss ways of transforming your avoidance goals into approach goals, using reframing techniques. Learn how to use the ‘miracle question’ to prompt movement beyond your current mental models.

Building an action plan

Step three of solution focused coaching involves thinking of ways to achieve your goal states. Initially, your task is to develop a wide range of options and ideas. Discover how asking yourself effective questions at this stage will broaden your options. Explore the characteristics of effective questions and get hands on experience using them. Combine your questioning skills with advanced brainstorming techniques to spark creative thinking. Then use forcefield analysis to select viable options and build an action plan.

Reframing your limiting beliefs

Your beliefs are generalisations you’ve made about the world, your relationships, your own capabilities and what is possible or impossible for you. Your beliefs determine how you make decisions and how you take action. This means they have a direct impact on your ability to create success. Discuss the difference between resourceful beliefs and limiting beliefs. Use questions from rational emotive therapy to uncover your own limiting beliefs. Then use reframing questions and statements to shift limiting beliefs and create more resourceful thinking patterns.

Challenging your unresourceful self-talk

Is your inner voice positive, affirming and solution focused? Or does it subtly undermine your confidence and self-esteem? Explore these questions using tools from cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Learn how to spot irrational language patterns in your self-dialogue. Use relanguaging techniques to transform limiting self-talk.

Turning your plans into action

No matter how brilliant your plans are, you won’t experience success until you take action. This means changing habits, learning new skills and moving out of your comfort zone. So how do you stay motivated and keep up the momentum? You need to monitor and evaluate your success, reinforce your successful strategies and change the strategies which aren’t working. In this module, you’ll learn how to use reflective thinking to do this. Learn what reflection is. Then we use a guided reflection process to assess what you’re doing well, what needs to change and how you can create that change.

Who teaches this?

Eleanor Shakiba is a leading NLP trainer, based in Sydney. She has taught over 48,000 people – like you- to use breakthrough thinking and communication tools. She has written over ninety training courses and produced 12 audio programs to help you excel at work. She is accredited to train in NLP by the International NLP Trainers' Association (INLPTA).

Eleanor is also qualified in Social Anthropology, Adult Education, Applied Psychology, Neuro Linguistic Programming and Mediation. She writes and teaches in the areas of applied psychology, communication and conflict resolution. Her passion is helping professionals learn skills for success in the real world.

Intended Audience

Suitable for all managers, team leaders, supervisors and individuals wishing to generate greater success within their profession.

Delivery Style

This is highly interactive. You will get the most from it if you are:

  • Willing to contribute to group discussions
  • Confident communicating verbally in English
  • Comfortable participating in role play style activities

You’ll learn through a variety of methods including:

  • Mini lectures
  • Video presentations
  • Question and answer sessions
  • Demonstrations by the trainer
  • Practical group activities
  • Individual planning activities


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  • Expert trainers
  • Central locations
  • Small class sizes
  • Free, expert advice
  • Student materials – yours to keep
  • Statement of completion
$526 Limited inc GST
Build a Success Mindset with Positive Psychology Course

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