My mission: to transform the way we work and live.



Find new power to lead change with Automatic Influence.

Automatic Influence Book My book offers an easier way to lead change, using the intrinsic motivations that automatically spring from our perceptions. With the insights in Automatic Influence, you'll hit the power button that transforms you and the people you lead. Learn more.


Use my speaking, training, coaching and consulting to support your mission.

Erik Van Alstine I love helping leaders lead better, work better, and live better. Ask about ways I can help you and your organization through training, coaching and consulting strategies. The goal is to tailor a laser-relevant strategy that boosts your performance. Learn more.


  • "Automatic Influence is the leader's new killer app."

    Todd Ostrander, CEO, Tectonic Audio Labs

  • Automatic Influence offers practical tools to serve a team, on the basis of relationship instead of surface tactics.”

    Jeff Rogers, Chairman & CEO, OneAccord

  • "Erik Van Alstine's approach is brilliant. This is a must-read for the nations of the world."

    Dr. Clyde Rivers, Honorary Ambassador at Large for the Republic of Burundi, Representative to the UN - New York, for the Interfaith Peace-Building Initiative

  • “In Automatic Influence, Erik Van Alstine explores the importance of perception, and the power it has to unlock our potential, to change ourselves, and influence others."

    Robert A. Sirico, President, Acton Institute

  • “In Automatic Influence, Erik offers a plan to eliminate useless fear, showing readers where fear comes from and how to beat it.”

    Tim Brown, Heisman Trophy winner, Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee, and Author, The Making of a Man

  • “My friend Erik Van Alstine has unearthed something special: the root of power and love.”

    James Robison, President, LIFE Outreach International, and Author, Indivisible


  • Freedom is a tricky topic, and I’ve been wrestling with it for several blog posts now. How do we help people maximize their sense of freedom and power, but still hold them accountable to follow the rules? How can we maximize our own sense of freedom and power, without letting the consequences of our choices […]

  • Are we empowering people? Do the people we lead to feel a sense of freedom? Do they follow us because they “want to” instead of “have to”? If not, we can change that. We can start toward a culture of empowerment by affirming people’s freedom, then reminding them of the principle-driven consequences of their free […]

  • People often follow leaders because they feel they “have to.” If I don’t do what she says, I’ll lose my job.  That’s not freely following. But then there are other leaders people freely follow. They don’t follow because they feel they “have to” but because they “want to.” What’s the difference? Why do some leaders incite […]

  • We love freedom. We all want to feel powerful, like we’re fully in charge of our lives. But there are forces in life that seem conspired against our freedom. Bosses and spouses telling us what to do. The responsibilities of work and family. The invisible need to conform to cultural norms. The build-up of laws […]

  • I love helping leaders lead better because there’s a lot at stake. If we’re a leader, our own success, fulfillment, and happiness depend on good leadership. So does the success, fulfillment, and happiness of those we lead. The atmosphere of our organization can be hell on earth, or heaven on earth, just because of the […]

  • Every time we make a decision, we say yes to one thing and no to another. “Yes” to a burger and fries is “no” to a trim stomach. “Yes” to driving north is “no” to driving south. “Yes” to an afternoon with a friend is “no” to an afternoon at work. Yes and no are […]

  • Do you often feel unsatisfied? Like something’s missing? Like you don’t have enough of something? There’s a deep human need for fulfillment. Certainly, this can be a deep philosophical and religious need. I’m reminded of a saying by Saint Augustine of Hippo, the fifth century Algerian church father: You have made us for yourself, and […]

  • This is the second in a series that asks the question, How much money is enough? Click here for part one. Last post we looked at the “Inverted-U Graph” and money. The point of the graph is, too much of a good thing is a bad thing. There’s a relationship between the amount of good we […]

  • For several posts lately I’ve been writing about the idea that too much of a good thing is a bad thing. There’s an Inverted-U relationship between the amount of good we get out of life and the quantity of things that contribute to the good. Here’s the Inverted-U graph: Take vacationing as an example. Vacation […]

  • Imagine trying to water ski without the pull of a boat. We bob in the water, pushing ourselves up, trying to raise ourselves to the surface, but sink right back down because the boat isn’t moving. This is often a picture of our emotional lives. We want to be happier, but fall back into doldrums […]

  • Our team just released a video interview, it captures my heart to help leaders be more effective. Enjoy!

  • “Do you kids know,” I asked, “that you do not have to do what I say? You don’t have to obey your mother either.” I have six children. One day in the year 2005, while we all were waiting in the living room for dinner, I started this casual conversation. The youngest was 6, oldest […]