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Home » Blog » Timothy Tiryaki – Should I become a Buddha or a CEO?

What are the connections between leadership and engineering and the human facets? This is a scientifically informed discussion about the ways in which an organisation can achieve Self-actualization. Discover how to recreate those awe-inspiring moments for yourself at The xMonks Drive Podcast.

Timothy’s Definition of Self

Gaurav: Timothy, how would you define self?

Timothy: A lot would define self as a concept is a construct in our minds. But I would say self is an experience. By experience of who we are and how it’s felt. It’s a fluid concept, I think the important thing that I can acknowledge that it’s the fluidity of the self and the facets of the self. So it’s really multi dimensional, multi layered, a really complex construct.

Of course, we can try to simplify it, visualize it in buckets, but the fluidity of self that it’s transformational, it’s in growth. I kind of like distinguishing between self, small lowercase s and self uppercase. Lowercase s in terms of do I feel limited to this identity, Timothy Tiryak, your name history and body alone. But we know that the self can also have feelings of expansion being beyond this .Maybe that expansion is about family, maybe the country, maybe nation, maybe religion, but or maybe the whole world itself. So the idea itself actually can have an expansion is a good reminder about.

Dimensions of Maslow’s Hierarchy in 21st Century

Gaurav: How did you get introduced to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs? How relevant are they today, when the individual’s needs are changing, when people are experiencing different threats from different dimensions and we are moving to the 21st century?

Timothy: Obviously, one of the first introductions for me was in university and Psychology 101. Although I’m an engineer by study, I haven’t been a practicing engineer. Maybe I’ll just tackle the story from that. First, having taken psychology 101, I was fascinated by that idea of human beings, which I started thinking about. Other dimensions of human psychology, the psyche, and towards my later years in university. I think it was during the third year. I was going through this operations research exam, it was multiple pages of equations, solving an airport optimization problem of trucks and devices and bakels. I remember I had one of those moments, this moment is a glimpse of something else, and then maybe my truth, and I was caught, why are we talking about the people?

Like, are the people happy? Who are they? How are they working together? Are they collaborating? Who who’s leading them? Oh, leadership, let go that could make such a big difference in efficiency, or the number of devices, vehicles and people we needed? I barely passed that exam, not because I didn’t know how to do it. But I will start with this idea. And as engineers, why aren’t we talking about the human facets at all? Well, obviously I got to learn that I wasn’t going to be a great engineer. And I moved into these different fields about the human sciences. It’s my first introduction to Maslow in university.

Finding Clarity in Answers

Gaurav: I’ve been pondering on a couple of questions for the last few days that what really matters in life, who am I? And how can I live a life from a space of freedom? So these are the three questions that I’ve been struggling with for the last few months. And here you are seeing that with so much clarity, how did you bump into that?

Timothy: Well, it was definitely not a single moment. It was a collection of moments, but the starting point was when I was actually invited to Oxford at a retreat center and it was part of a Raja Yoga retreat. There was this international speaker and leader Brian Bacon, who is the founder of Oxford Leadership Academy till this day. This retreat and camp was focused on self managing leadership and it was full of self reflection around the purpose, vision, values, strengths and calling. That was the starting point where I started, it gave me the idea of personal strategic planning. And that’s one thing I noticed a lot in my coaching practice. All these leaders and executives know strategic planning so well, like inside out. They’ve mastered it for the company and for the brand. But when you bring it to the self, though, strategic planning for the self, it was it’s, it’s not exactly the same thing. So I started practicing that in the 20s. That became my annual practice. My new year resolution was not kind of a promise. It was my self retreat, my camp, my half day one day off where I would get the pen and paper in and keep refining year over year over 10 years my purpose vision values purpose vision values. What did I learn this year? How did I reiterate my values? But it took around 10 years to get it clear. Till this day I play with my values the way I define them. The core essence doesn’t change, but the meaning of how I would use courage or inspiration. Of course, it gets fine tuned. So fluidity again.

Get more on connection between Maslow’s Theory of Values and Needs by Timothy on The xMonks Drive Podcast.

About The Speaker: Timothy Tiryaki

Timothy Tiryaki PhD(c), MEd., PCC is an executive coach and the founder of Maslow Centre for Executive Leadership, together with master coach Diane Bonneau, MCC.

Maslow is a centre of excellence for coaching. The centre offers ICF accredited coach training programs and large scale corporate coaching projects. Maslow Centre works with #Fortune500 companies and #BestWorkplaces in North America. Maslow Centre developed North America’s first organizational culture coaching certification program exclusively focusing on corporate culture.

Timothy previously worked at large corporations such as Procter & Gamble, Intel, and Index Group and has experience in sales, marketing and HR roles. His consulting experience includes Great Place to Work, Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) Consulting, and Bob Proctor Consulting (Managing Partner) where he worked directly with C-level leaders and has taught at Bogazici University Lifelong learning Center, Global Knowledge Canada, and SFU.

Timothy has an Industrial Engineering degree from Bogazici University, in Istanbul, Turkey, a Master of Education from SFU and is a PhD. Candidate on Philosophy of Education with a focus on leadership development and coach education, also through SFU. He holds 5 coaching certifications and is trained in multiple coaching styles (cognitive behavioral, behavioral, solution focused, positive psychology). Timothy has 4 nationally published books in Turkish (one exclusively on Coaching).