Todd Kashdan

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Leading Authority on Well-being, Psychological Flexibility, Curiosity, Courage, and Resilience; Professor of Psychology, George Mason University

Biography

Todd B. Kashdan, Ph.D. is Professor of Psychology at George Mason University, and a leading authority on well-being, psychological flexibility, curiosity, courage, and resilience. He has published over 200 peer-reviewed articles and his work has been cited over 34,000 times. He received the Faculty Member of the Year Award from George Mason University and Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contributions from the American Psychological Association. He is the author of “Curious?” and “The Upside of Your Dark Side,” and his latest book is “The Art of Insubordination: How to Dissent and Defy Effectively” (Avery, February 2022). His writing has appeared in the Harvard Business Review, National Geographic, Fast Company, among other publications, and his research is featured regularly in media outlets such as The Atlantic, The New York Times, NPR, and Time Magazine.

Todd Kashdan is available to advise your organization via virtual and in-person consulting meetings, interactive workshops and customized keynotes through the exclusive representation of Stern Speakers & Advisors, a division of Stern Strategy Group®.

Videos

Books & Research

The Art of Insubordination: How to Dissent and Defy Effectively

(Avery, February 2022)

The Effects of Self-Compassion on Daily Emotion Regulation and Performance Rebound Among College Athletes: Comparisons With Confidence, Grit, and Hope

(Psychology of Sports and Exercise, October 2021)

Daily Television Exposure, Parent Conversation During Shared Television Viewing and Socioeconomic Status: Associations With Curiosity at Kindergarten

(Research Gate, October 2021)

Why Curiosity Matters

(Harvard University Press, September 2018)

The Upside of Your Dark Side: Why Being Your Whole Self--Not Just Your "Good" Self--Drives Success and Fulfillment

(Avery, September 2014)

Curiosity Protects Against Interpersonal Aggression: Cross-Sectional, Daily Process, and Behavioral Evidence

(Journal of Personality, February 2012)

Using Personal and Psychological Strengths Leads to Increases in Well-Being Over Time: A Longitudinal Study and the Development of the Strengths Use Questionnaire

(Personality and Individual Differences, January 2011)

A Dynamic Approach to Psychological Strength Development and Intervention

(The Journal of Positive Psychology, May 2010)

Psychological Flexibility as a Fundamental Aspect of Health

(Clinical Psychology Review, November 2010)

Curious?: Discover the Missing Ingredient to a Fulfilling Life

(William Morrow, April 2009)

Gender Differences in Gratitude: Examining Appraisals, Narratives, the Willingness to Express Emotions, and Changes in Psychological Needs

(Wiley Online Library, April 2009)

The Curiosity and Exploration Inventory-II: Development, Factor Structure, and Psychometrics

(Journal of Research in Personality, December 2009)

Purpose in Life as a System that Creates and Sustains Health and Well-Being: An Integrative, Testable Theory

(SAGE Journals, September 2009)

Understanding the Search for Meaning in Life: Personality, Cognitive Style, and the Dynamic Between Seeking and Experiencing Meaning

(Wiley Online Library, March 2008)

Being Good by Doing Good: Daily Eudaimonic Activity and Well-Being

(Journal of Research in Personality, February 2008)

Curiosity and Pathways to Well-Being and Meaning in Life: Traits, States, and Everyday Behaviors

(SpringerLink, September 2007)

Experiential Avoidance as a Generalized Psychological Vulnerability: Comparisons With Coping and Emotion Regulation Strategies

(Behaviour Research and Therapy, September 2006)

A-Z Name

Kashdan, Todd

Biography

Todd B. Kashdan, Ph.D. is Professor of Psychology at George Mason University, and a leading authority on well-being, psychological flexibility, curiosity, courage, and resilience. He has published over 200 peer-reviewed articles and his work has been cited over 34,000 times. He received the Faculty Member of the Year Award from George Mason University and Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contributions from the American Psychological Association. He is the author of “Curious?” and “The Upside of Your Dark Side,” and his latest book is “The Art of Insubordination: How to Dissent and Defy Effectively” (Avery, February 2022). His writing has appeared in the Harvard Business Review, National Geographic, Fast Company, among other publications, and his research is featured regularly in media outlets such as The Atlantic, The New York Times, NPR, and Time Magazine.

Todd Kashdan is available to advise your organization via virtual and in-person consulting meetings, interactive workshops and customized keynotes through the exclusive representation of Stern Speakers & Advisors, a division of Stern Strategy Group®.

Speech Topics

  • Relentless: The Science of Strength Use and Development
  • Emotional Agility
  • Curious Individuals, Teams, and Organizations
  • Leveraging Courage in the Workplace
  • The Science of Diversity: Unlocking the Power to Think Differently
  • The Power of Dissent and Constructive Conflict
  • Creating Groups That Are Greater Than the Sum of Their Parts
  • The Art and Science of Resilience
  • Optimizing Social Relationships

Media

Array

Books & Research

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Workshops

Executive Education Workshop: Agile Leadership – Building a Stronger Work Culture with the Science of Emotion, Motivation, and Personality

Recommendations

Recommendations for “The Art of Insubordination”

“Todd Kashdan combines cutting-edge science and real-life stories about the kind of insubordination we need to make the world a better place. This is the book that all virtuous rebels need.”

— Charles Duhigg, bestselling author of “The Power of Habit” and “Smarter Faster Better

“Why is it so difficult to do the right thing, especially when the system pushes against us? In this engaging, well-researched book, you’ll discover practical ways to speak up, show up and make a difference.”

— Seth Godin, author of “Poke the Box

“Although dissent is an art, Kashdan shows us something even more important and practical — it’s also a science. He does so with an array of captivating and instructive accounts that reveal the value of this skill.”

— Robert B. Cialdini, author of “Influence” and “Pre-Suasion”

“Our world is broken, and this book can help us fix it. Todd Kashdan’s work shows us the most effective ways to defy injustice and shake up the status quo  in both big and small ways. This is the book we’ve been waiting for.”

— Judson Brewer, New York Times bestselling author of “Unwinding Anxiety


With new research and original, inspiring stories, Kashdan has delivered a manifesto for individuals and organizations who want to spark innovation and creativity.”

— Susan David, PhD, author of the #1 Wall Street Journal bestseller “Emotional Agility”

“If the goal is to continually improve society and make your teams better, read this book. My hope is that ‘The Art of Insubordination’ will be widely read to inspire a new generation of rebels with a cause.”

— Greg Lukianoff, co-author of the New York Times bestsellerThe Coddling of the American Mind

Recommendations for “The Upside of Your Dark Side”

“At long last, here’s a book on why happiness can make us sad and mindfulness might be overrated. The Upside of Your Dark Side offers a provocative, evidence-based case for a balanced life. If you haven’t read it yet, you should feel guilty—and it turns out that will be good for you.”

— Adam Grant, author of “Give and Take”

“With verve, humor, solid research, and lots of examples, the authors cut through prevailing myths about happiness to show what actually creates a fulfilling, contributing life. Brave, bold, and brilliant.”

—  Rick Hanson, PhD, author of “Buddha’s Brain”

“Anger, guilt, regret, and anxiety have no place in a happy life, right? Wrong. The Upside of Your Dark Side illuminates the essential role played by negative emotions. And then goes further, revealing the benefits of personality traits we tend to downgrade such as grandiosity and selfishness. Essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the hidden elements of a happy, fulfilling, engaged life.”

— Gretchen Rubin, author of ‘The Happiness Project”

“The Upside of Your Dark Side offers one of the most important messages of recent psychological science: that you don’t need to avoid discomfort or distress to have a meaningful and joyful life. The authors provide a highly refreshing alternative to the idea that one must pursue happiness at all costs. There is much to be learned from the experience of negative emotions, and from this book.”

— Kelly McGonigal, PhD, author of ‘The Willpower Instinct’

“I feel like I have five new superpowers after reading this book. It turns out that leading a good and satisfying life doesn’t mean we have to try to be happy, calm or optimistic all the time. We can learn to use uncomfortable feelings like anger, anxiety, guilt, sadness or boredom to be kinder, braver, smarter, more creative and more persuasive. The dark side does indeed have an upside — and this book teaches us how to harness it, so we can truly lead more heroic and purposeful lives.”

— Jane McGonigal, PhD, author of “Reality Is Broken”

“Full of scientific research yet laugh-out-loud funny, this book is a must read. The authors turn everything on its head—questioning the wisdom of positive psychology and the pursuit of happiness—all in order to help us flourish and be happy!”

— Kristin Neff, PhD, author of “Self-Compassion”

“My experience with hundreds of clients tells me that happiness and well-being result from facing and accepting bouts of fear, shame and self-doubt. I am so glad that Todd and Robert chose to illustrate the science behind embracing negative emotions in this engaging book. It will help you live a deep, rich and meaningful life.”

— Pamela Slim, author of “Body of Work” and “Escape from Cubicle Nation”

“Do we really need another book about happiness? Don’t we all already know those ‘10 Steps to Certain Happiness’? The answers, surprisingly, are “Yes” and “No”. Yes, we need this book by Todd and Robert because No, we don’t know it all about happiness. It turns out there’s a hugely under-utilized tool to increase your capacity for happiness. The very Dark from which we run away is often the path to the Light. If you’ve ever wondered how you can use what’s Difficult to get closer to what’s Good, this just might be the book for you.”

— Michael Bungay Stanier, Senior Partner, Box of Crayons and author of “Do More Great Work”

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