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The Green Sheet Online Edition

January 14, 2013 • Issue 13:01:01

Book Review
The Business of Wanting More:
A capitalist's guide to transformation

In his new book, The Business of Wanting More: Why Some Executives Move from Success to Fulfillment and Others Don't, Brian Gast describes a time when he was the Chief Executive Officer of the fastest-growing telecommunications services companies in the world. "At thirty-four, I had it all," he wrote. "Well, all the things I ever thought I wanted - a nice house, great cars, luxurious vacations - and money, still in the bank. I was living the American businessperson's dream. And I was miserable."

Though he realized his life was out of balance, he didn't make significant changes until a business setback forced him to reassess and regroup. While regaining his command in the corporate world, he also began a serious quest to lead a more fulfilling life. To that end, he participated in one-on-one coaching, small-group discussions, vision quests, sweat lodge ceremonies and even zip-line rides blindfolded.

"All that inner work tapped into a joy, peace and clarity I didn't know was possible," he wrote. "I became fascinated by the workings of the psyche and committed myself to dissolving the illusions that kept me from seeing what was true about myself and the world."

In the process, Gast also discovered that he was "uniquely equipped to help busy executives discern what truly fulfills them." This led him to found the business coaching firm Quadrant Corp., which married his business acumen with his newfound knowledge of personal growth. Gast's book tells his personal story and describes a process he calls the Q7 Process, which he designed to "help executives, struggling between success and happiness, achieve both."

A program designed for business leaders

Based on the work of coach, group facilitator and author Tom Daly and Jungian analyst Robert Moore, Gast identified four distinct aspects to each person, which he calls quadrants. This is the genesis of the "Q" in Q7.

The quadrants govern feeling, acting, thinking and being. Feeling and being are considered to be right brain (creative, intuitive) functions, while acting and thinking are designated as left-brain (logical, analytical) functions. According to this theory of brain function, people tend to favor one side of the brain more than the other. Gast believes people are more satisfied when both sides of the brain are on par.

The numeral "7" is incorporated into the Q7 name because, in his work, Gast takes clients through a seven-step process through each quadrant. The seven steps are:

  1. Take a fearless inventory of your life.
  2. Create a vision for your life.
  3. Remove the barriers to fulfillment.
  4. Burst your bubble.
  5. Build your court of support.
  6. Create a personal-practices regimen.
  7. Draw a road map to your future.

The book details the rationale for the quadrants and provides ample instructions on how to go through each step of the process. For executives and entrepreneurs who are highly motivated to do this type of inner work, it would be possible to make positive changes by using the book alone. Others might want to explore some of Gast's coaching, retreat and team facilitating offerings, as well. For further information, visit www.briangast.com.

 The Business of Wanting More: Why Some Executives Move from Success to Fulfillment and Others Don't
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