The ultimate in fascination: be yourself

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Don't we all want to be fascinating? Sally Hogshead's book Fascinate: Unlocking the Secret Triggers of Influence, Persuasion, and Captivation discusses this concept or more accurately teaches you that you are already fascinating and how to use your natural abilities to be more fascinating. Interested? Of course you are, this is all about you, baby!

Ideas from Fascinate:

  • Anyone, and anything, can become more fascinating
  • Fascination affects every part of our life
  • This is the new competitive advantage

Why do you need to be more fascinating?

  • We are barraged with an overload of distractions
  • Everyone has Shiny Object Syndrome (SOS)

“Every time you introduce yourself, you have 9 seconds to engage your listener. This is your golden window of opportunity. If you fail to fascinate, your listener will lose interest and you will lose the opportunity.” Sally Hogshead

Nine seconds is about the attention span of a goldfish. Yikes!

Becoming more fascinating using the strengths that you already have boosts your own “it factor” and makes your message more compelling. In other words, being MORE you is a good thing, what could be easier than that? There is a lot of talk about personal brands and this would fall into that realm but it's what Sally calls “personality branding” which is learning more about yourself to use your strengths and master the ability to fascinate.

Sally's research created seven main triggers that create a matrix of forty nine archetypes.

Power — lead others

Passion — connect with emotion

Mystique — communicate carefully

Prestige — set the standard

Alarm — protect the details

Trust — build loyalty

Rebellion — get creative

To give you an idea of how Fascinate works, I'll share my two fascination triggers from my Fascination quiz: passion and rebellion. People with a primary trigger of passion connect with emotion. The traits of passion are: expressive, intuitive, playful, impulsive, and affectionate. People with a primary passion trigger attract others to them and their ideas, combine that with my secondary trigger of rebellion, guaranteed my mom would agree with that one. People with a rebellion trigger change the game with creativity. The traits of rebellion are: innovation, independence, entrepreneurial, unpredictable, and mischievous.

Combine my two triggers of passion and rebellion and I'm a catalyst: outgoing, experimental and out-of-the-box.















Here's a link to an interactive Trigger Chart that you can look at which will work best for you once you've taken the quiz yourself, below is a solid graphic.


I had the pleasure of interviewing Sally online for My Book Club and here's what she had to say:

Q What sparked the idea for a book on Fascination for you?

I wanted to understand why we become captivated by certain people. Why do certain leaders inspire and motivate, while others are ignored? How do some presenters captivate the room? And then, there’s the most important question of all… What makes YOUR personality fascinating?

The science of fascination begins deep inside the human brain: what fascinates us, and, how we each fascinate others. Fascination isn’t about how you perceive the world— but how the world perceives you. Fascination is an intense emotional focus. It’s instinctive, irrational, and irresistible.

How to fascinate? That is the question… and here is the answer… (dramatic pause here)… here it comes.. You already have everything you need to fascinate. It’s built into you. But, you need to identify and express it. The world does not need another tweet. It needs YOU!

Q You discuss the “Gold Hallmarks of a Fascinating Message” in Fascinate. Can you explain these to #MyBookClub?

“The Gold Hallmarks” is our criteria for determining how fascinating a person or brand is… Gold Hallmark 1: Evokes strong and immediate emotional response. (Love it or hate it)

Fascinating things and people make us instantly feel a strong response. We are gripped immediately.  Ask yourself: “Do I evoke a strong and immediate response?” Your social media, resume, etc. all must fascinate. You will not win by being quiet. You win by being heard.

“You don't learn to be fascinating, you unlearn how to be boring.” Sally Hogshead

Sally was a recent guest on Marie Forleo's MarieTV. A double dose of fascination for you. I highly recommend the book Fascinate and hope that you'll take the time to learn more about yourself and be more YOU!

Photo credits CuteCultureChick  and josullivan.59.

Article by Peg Fitzpatrick

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  1. Sally is doing really cool things. The Fascination Advantage Test was very interesting. I enjoyed my results. Thanks for sharing this Peg!

    1. jaredeasley Sally is just darn cool! Her research is really interesting. She’s worked with big brands and puts all the pieces together for how you can use being fascinating. Glad you liked it!

  2. *love* Sally’s book + tests. I find that it’s so helpful to learn how to play to your strengths. thanks for the awesome recap, Peg!

    1. itsjessicann I love it too – very interesting for people who are writers or involved in social media but really for anyone. Sally’s big brand experience is impressive and I love how she applies it to them as well.

  3. Peg,
    I read fascinate twice. My top two triggers are trust and rebellion. It took me a while to really grasp what that means and how to take full advantage.
    I really enjoy learning about what makes us all tick and Sally really presents some great ideas.
    Passion and rebellion? Seems quite fitting from what I can tell. Your writing is most creative and it is obvious that you really love what you do!


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