At dinner recently, my son talked about the difficulties of pre-calculus. While he's always had a great feel for math, what stood out for him were the "failures", the math problems that taunted him while saying "I'm too difficult for you" or "you're no good at math." Each bump in the road undermined his confidence and drive to persevere. It's a hard thing to witness as a parent.

At it's core, this success-and-failure dynamic is all about self-efficacy, a concept first identified by Dr. Albert Bandura in a seminal 1977 paper. Self-efficacy is a measure of your belief in your capabilities, a belief that determines the degree to which you have incentives to act. When self-efficacy is high, you're motivated to work hard to achieve desired goals. When it's low, you're unlikely to invest your efforts since you assume you won't get a return.

For my son, every insurmountable math problem erodes self-efficacy – creating a negative feedback loop – while each success renews his confidence and effort. Of course, this is true for everyone and this dynamic is present across all learning tasks. In fact, self-efficacy is fundamental to the entire human experience. It's no wonder, then, that this topic has been central to education theory and practice for decades.

Which leads us to an exciting new Emotion Life Lab feature: Stories.

Stories let learners capture their successes as video, audio or text. As each Story is captured, you cultivate your self-efficacy by reminding yourself that your efforts are paying off. Emotion Life Lab learners can capture Stories anytime, and are also prompted to do so within the Emotion Life Lab itself.

We came up the Stories concept after hearing so many exciting examples from our learners. About self-regulation in the operating room. About conversations with teenage kids that proceeded without any fireworks (amazing!). About teams that can recognize when the boss is "in the red" and then lend a hand to help him settle down. Every time we hear about a success, we know that self-efficacy is on the rise, providing new motivation for people to invest in their EI education.

While you'll capture Stories principally for your own benefit, you also have the option to make them visible to Oji Coaches, providing them with insights that they can translate into even better coaching and support.

Our New Dashboard and Story Insights

Stories are compelling for learners, but also offer a potential bonus benefit for Emotion Life Lab customers inside organizations: Stories provide invaluable insights regarding the value that learners are deriving from their EI training.

To provide access to these insights, we're launching our brand-new Dashboard, a website for organizational customers that delivers powerful tools to allow customers to optimize learning and assess outcomes. The Dashboard represents a big leap forward for our organizational customers.

How does the Dashboard support the new Stories feature? First, it displays stats on how many Stories are being created. Most importantly, the Dashboard allows customers to evaluate Stories based on tags. These tags are assigned by learners as they record each story, indicating the type of benefit that they realized – better decisions, improved relationships, enhanced performance, etc.

So, for example, if you have 100 learners in the Emotion Life Lab, you might see that in the first 30 days they made 72 better decisions and elevated creativity 43 times. Our customers have been eager to get these kinds of quantitative measures to understand the value of the Emotion Life Lab.

The Dashboard also allows customers to see actual the extent that learners have provided access to them (as always, it's their choice). This provides you with a window into learning success stories that you've never had before.

As you'd expect, we have a lot more planned to add to our new Dashboard, so stay tuned for exciting new features!

Rolling out Stories

Emotion Life Lab learners can start capturing Stories now, providing a whole new way to reflect on the benefits of emotional intelligence. We're excited to hear how people are using Stories to support their learning journey.

For our organizational customers, we'll be introducing the Dashboard over the coming weeks, providing a whole new lens to understand the many ways that learners are benefiting from their EI skills.

The key, for us, is to make sure that every Emotion Life Lab learner is experiencing new successes throughout their work and personal life, and that these successes encourage even deeper learning. We can't wait to hear your stories!