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Caroline Adams Miller Speaker

Caroline Adams Miller

    • Bestselling Author & Coach in areas of Positive Psychology, Goals & Grit.
Fee Range

$15,000 - $20,000

Travels From


2019 Sizzle Reel

2019 Sizzle Reel

Grit Rewards

Grit Rewards

Grit & Goals

Grit & Goals

Caroline Miller is one of the world’s leading experts on the science behind successful goal setting and the use of ‘good grit’ to achieve hard things. For more than 30 years, she’s been sharing her research-backed, actionable strategies to help people cultivate more grit and dig deeper to clarify and achieve their toughest goals.

Achieving hard goals is one of the most rewarding things we can do in both our personal and professional lives.


Caroline Miller spoke to the employees of Swisse Wellness in March 2017 at their Melbourne, Australia headquarters

In her keynote presentations and workshops, Caroline blends her personal experience, real-life timely examples, and the latest research in the field of positive psychology, to come up with practical applications that allow for maximum transformation, growth and flourishing in people’s lives. Caroline leaves her audiences with tangible takeaways and actions they can use to create their own happiness and success.

Angela Duckworth, winner of the 2013 MacArthur Genius grant for her research on grit, said of Caroline: “I don’t know anybody who has thought more than Caroline about how to apply the scientific research on grit and achievement to our own lives!” Caroline takes Angela Duckworth’s research on grit a step further by distinguishing between good and bad grit – not all grit is created equal. In Caroline’s latest book Getting Grit, she describes four types of ‘Good Grit’ – Mt. Rushmore grit, Mt. Olympus grit, Celebrity grit, and Ordinary grit – and three types of ‘Bad Grit’ – Faux grit, Selfie grit, and Stupid grit. Caroline defines Authentic (‘Good’) Grit as “the passionate pursuit of hard goals that awes and inspires others to become better people, flourish emotionally, take positive risks and live their best lives.”

Caroline is a TEDx speaker. She has worked with clients around the world including Morgan Stanley, Lululemon, The Wharton School/UPENN, RE/MAX, Booz Allen, Young Presidents’ Organization, Harvard Law School, American Bankers Association, Swisse Wellness, and more.


Caroline joined select Wharton faculty at the IPADE business school in Mexico City where they taught 800 CEOs.

Caroline has a Masters of Applied Positive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, graduated magna cum laude from Harvard, and teaches at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Business School’s Executive Education program. She was an adjunct lecturer in Positive Psychology and coaching at NYU’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies, and at the University of Texas-Dallas School of Management for almost a decade. She facilitates webinars and training for dozens of organizations, including the VIA Institute on Character about well-being, productivity, grit, and success. Caroline was one of the first happiness experts to join and advise Happify, the premier digital platform offering evidence-based resilience solutions for employers and health plans.


Although she didn’t have a word for it at the time, Caroline used “grit” to help overcome her personal battle with bulimia. As a young teen, she became addicted to binging and purging behavior, and it resulted in an 8-year hidden battle until she hit her last bottom at the age of 22. A chance encounter at a self-help compulsive eater group with a recovering bulimic named “Betsy” gave Caroline the hope she needed to start her journey of recovery one day at a time in 1984. Ultimately, Caroline’s story became the international bestseller “My Name is Caroline” (Doubleday 1988), and was the first autobiography to give others hope that recovery was possible. Caroline’s courage has been credited with creating a more open dialogue between sufferers and their loved ones and was followed up in 2013 with “Positively Caroline” (Cogent 2013) about her unbroken decades of recovery. She remains passionate about helping others overcome eating disorders and addiction and has spoken as part of sessions for the Child Mind Center NYC, Project Heal, the National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders (ANAD), and more.

Caroline is also known as the founder of ‘The Awethentic Effect’ which explains the infectious impact of witnessing or hearing about someone accomplishing a hard goal. And she pioneered the #Share222 movement which encourages women to share other women’s stories of success on two social media platforms at least twice a week as a way bring light to the accomplishments of women in order to build each other up.


Caroline is the author of six books, including the bestselling My Name is Caroline (Doubleday 1988), which was an Alternate Selection of the Literary Guild, and Positively Caroline (Cogent 2013), its

Caroline spoke and signed books in Tokyo in 2018, where her book hit #1 in Kindle psychology sales the day it was released. Its sequel, Creating Your Best Life (Sterling 2009), is the first mass-market self-help book on the science of happiness and how it intersects with the science of accomplishing goals. It is popular in the mass market and is also used as a textbook in numerous coaching and Positive Psychology classes around the world. The “father of Positive Psychology,” Martin Seligman, lauded Caroline’s scholarship in his book Flourish, noting that she had “added a major missing piece to the world of coaching” because of her ground-breaking and evidence-based connection between Positive Psychology and success. Her workbook, Your Happiest Life, is a four-week guide to help users learn how to set and accomplish goals in a step-by-step way through science-based activities and proven techniques. Caroline’s newest book, Getting Grit (Sounds True 2017), discusses why the character strength grit is so important to a flourishing life, who has it, and how to cultivate, amplify, and teach it. Live Happy Magazine named Creating Your Best Life one of the top 10 goal setting books ever published and Getting Grit one of the 10 books that would change your life in 2017. Caroline’s books have been translated into German, Korean, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese and Italian.


Caroline’s work has been featured in hundreds of magazines, newspapers and other media around the world including BBC World News, The New York Times, The Washington Post, NBC, NPR, CNN, and more. She was the first Positive Psychology expert to bring coaching and happiness to satellite radio via XM with her “Positive Tip of the Day.”


For two decades, Caroline has coached hundreds of individuals, from senior executives to professional athletes, and parents to politicians on how to identify their character strengths, get more grit and achieve their goals. She is a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) through the International Coach Federation. In 2015, Caroline was named “one of the 10 Positive Psychology coaches to follow.”


Caroline is a top-ranked Masters Swimmer in multiple events and has a black belt in Hapkido. Caroline lives with her family in the Greater Washington, D.C. area.

Throw Out What You Know About ‘SMART’ Goals
How to Set Effective Goals & Accomplish Them Using Grit

One of the most common misconceptions about goal setting is that there are only a few things we need to know in order to achieve our goals. Often, the acronym SMART is used to help people to remember to set goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time- sensitive. While this is a nice start, the acronym doesn’t do justice to some of the tremendous complexities that motivational specialists and researchers have discovered are important to an individual’s success. In this presentation, Caroline walks sales managers, business leaders, and employees through the science of goal setting and grit, and provides practical ways they can apply this research to exceed established goals. Caroline’s unique, comprehensive, and evidence-based approach helps attendees to create and accomplish any goal, driving happiness and success in their professional and personal lives.

After attending, participants are able to:

- Set challenging and specific goals (learning and performance) and avoid the most common mistakes that derail progress;
- Cultivate grit, to help them stay resilient and persevere in the face of difficulty; and
- Establish accountability and a positive “web of influence.”


Creating Your Best Life
How to Identify and Pursue the Most Meaningful Goals with Grit

Happy people wake up every single day to clear-cut, hard goals that provide their lives with meaning and purpose. They go outside their comfort zone, with no guarantee of success. They don’t quit or make excuses. Instead, they rely on the characteristic of “grit” to overcome challenges and achieve their goals. In this talk, Goals & GritTM expert Caroline Adams Miller connects research on goal setting with the science of positive psychology. She provides evidence-based knowledge and exercises to help attendees assess and use their character strengths, set bigger goals, and cultivate grit to drive happiness and success in their professional and personal lives.

After attending, participants are able to:

- Create a personal life list using a vision of their “best possible future self” with an understanding of why it is important to flourishing;
- Set challenging and specific goals (learning and performance) and avoid the most common mistakes that derail progress;
- Cultivate grit to help them stay resilient and persevere in the face of difficulty; and
- Establish accountability and a positive “web of influence”.


Grit Is the New MBA
How to Hire for Grit and Cultivate It In Your Team

It’s no secret these days that grit (more than talent, IQ, looks, or wealth) is one of the top indicators of success. When you hire for grit, you get someone that thrives, no matter what you throw at them. Gritty candidates make for dedicated, high-performing employees, who bounce back faster from setbacks. Already have a team in place? The good news is that grit is a characteristic that can be cultivated among your existing team members. In this talk, Caroline Adams Miller takes Angela Duckworth’s research on grit to the next level… Duckworth says: “I don’t know anybody who has thought more than Caroline Miller about how to apply the scientific research on grit and achievement to our own lives.” Caroline shares stories of ordinary “gritty” people, unpacks the qualities and behaviors we can all cultivate to get gritty and identifies specific actions that audience members can take to push themselves further in driving success for your organization.

After attending, participants are able to:

- Cultivate their own character strengths that lead to becoming grittier and in turn inspire their team members;
- Spot the different types of grit—good and bad—and what to look for when hiring and mentoring team members;
- Frame questions and use personality assessments, such as the VIA Strengths Survey, to test for grit and teamwork skills; and
- Implement strategies within their company to attract candidates with grit.


How to Cultivate Grit in Schools…
And Put the “Awe” Back in Awesome

Although the word “awesome” is thrown around a lot in today’s society, experts say that we have become “awe-deprived” in recent years due to cheating scandals in sports and business, and overall lowered standards for excellence. The millennial generation, however, was raised with abundant praise, leading to concerns that when their performance reviews aren’t “awesome” they feel discouragement and demotivation. Easy goals and low standards for excellence can actually prevent people from becoming awesome. According to the most current research, when people are truly awe-inspired by extraordinary behavior and events, they are profoundly impacted and are more likely to work hard, be hopeful, and be kind to others. Grit is also an essential element in being awesome, and specific character strengths that undergird gritty behavior can be cultivated to support becoming one’s best self. Using research and stories of gritty people, Caroline weaves together a variety of information that leaves “Gen Z” students, parents, and teachers understanding the importance of hard goals, gritty behavior, and why inspiration is a necessary ingredient in a flourishing life.


Be All In
What it Takes to be a Gritty Woman

What do most female leaders who thrive in the current business climate have in common? Grit! Authentic Grit is the passionate pursuit of hard goals that awes and inspires others to become better people, flourish emotionally, take positive risks, and live their best lives. Achieving hard, meaningful goals is one of the most rewarding things women can do personally and professionally. In this talk, Caroline Adams Miller shares the actions, habits, and mindset of gritty women around the world, lessons that female leaders can learn at a time when it’s never been more important. Through storytelling and ground-breaking research, Caroline inspires your audience to be fearless, take bold steps, imagine limitless futures, and have the passion, persistence, humility, and courage to take risks and achieve their toughest goals.

After attending, participants are able to:

- Assess and amplify their flourishing, using their character strengths;
- Set goals with evidence-based approaches for best possible outcomes;
- Develop their environment with a supportive “web of influence” including a “moai” – a Mastermind group; and
- Cultivate a mindset of self-efficiency, resilience, optimism, and grit, as well as commit to helping other women through sharing their stories of grit.

Speaking Topics:

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