Start reading Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence on the free Kindle Reading App or on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Enter a promotion code
or gift card
 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 

Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence [Kindle Edition]

Daniel Goleman
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (191 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $28.99
Kindle Price: $12.99
You Save: $16.00 (55%)
Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers

Free Kindle Reading App Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Whispersync for Voice

Switch back and forth between reading the Kindle book and listening to the Audible narration. Add narration for a reduced price of $12.99 after you buy the Kindle book.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $12.99  
Hardcover $16.01  
Paperback, International Edition --  
Audible Audio Edition, Unabridged $19.95 or Free with Audible 30-day free trial
Mass Market Paperback, International Edition --  
Audio, CD, Audiobook, Unabridged $24.96  
Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Book Description

In Focus, Psychologist and journalist Daniel Goleman, author of the #1 international bestseller Emotional Intelligence, offers a groundbreaking look at today’s scarcest resource and the secret to high performance and fulfillment: attention.

Combining cutting-edge research with practical findings, Focus delves into the science of attention in all its varieties, presenting a long overdue discussion of this little-noticed and under-rated mental asset. In an era of unstoppable distractions, Goleman persuasively argues that now more than ever we must learn to sharpen focus if we are to survive in a complex world.

Goleman boils down attention research into a threesome: inner, other, and outer focus. Drawing on rich case studies from fields as diverse as competitive sports, education, the arts, and business, he shows why high-achievers need all three kinds of focus, and explains how those who rely on Smart Practices—mindfulness meditation, focused preparation and recovery, positive emotions and connections, and mental “prosthetics” that help them improve habits, add new skills, and sustain greatness—excel while others do not.



Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Attention is a “little-noticed and underrated mental asset,” sorely tested among modern distractions but essential to success in work, play, relationships, and self-awareness, asserts Goleman, psychologist, journalist, and author of Emotional Intelligence (1995). In fact, the ability to focus, more than IQ or social background, is the key to performance and success. Neuroscience, case studies, and personal experience contribute to Goleman’s exploration of focus, which includes concentration, selective attention, open awareness, self-awareness, empathy, and systems awareness. He breaks them down to inner, other, and outer focus. Among examples of the significance of focus: a doctor’s ability to shut down emotions to focus on gory medical procedures; an epidemiologist’s attention to patterns and systems to track the human connections that lead to global pandemics; and a gamer’s focus on spatial perception, decision making, and ability to track objects. In commerce, education, sports, and personal life, Goleman offers concepts and techniques, including mindfulness and meditation, to train ourselves to be more focused, exercising those areas of the brain involved in focusing attention. An engaging, wide-ranging look at attention and intelligence. --Vanessa Bush

Review

“Daniel Goleman has surpassed himself in the breadth, depth, and readability ofthis fascinating meditation on what is most important for human, organizational, andplanetary flourishing. Focusshows us how to go about paying attention in all the ways that really matter.” (Jon Kabat-Zinn, founder of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reductionand author of Mindfulness for BeginnersJon Kabat-Zinn, founder of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reductionand author of Mindfulness for BeginnersJon Kabat-Zinn, founder of Mindfulness-Based St)

“I’ve been studying attention for more than a decade, but I learned something new on every page of Focus. It is a powerful guide for taking control of our attention and will lead you to nothing less than taking control of your life.” (Tony Schwartz, author of The Power of Full Engagement and CEO of The Energy Project)

“With compelling insights, wide-ranging examples, and cutting-edge science, Daniel Goleman makes the convincing case that the ability to focus is a key to excellence, in both our personal and professional lives-and also explains how to boost that focus.” (Gretchen Rubin, bestselling author of The Happiness Project)

“Attention is so important that ordinary people take it for granted, while scientists subject it to microanalysis. Steering deftly between these extremes, Dan Goleman synthesizes what is known and what we need to know.” (Howard Gardner, John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognitionand Education at the Harvard Graduate School of EducationHoward Garnder, John H. and Elizabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Educati)

“Daniel Goleman has written the perfect prescription for today’s deficit of attention in business and life....Highly recommended!” (Chip Conley, founder of Joie de Vivre Hospitality and author of Peak and Emotional Equations)

“Goleman has provided a highly readable manifesto for turning our smartphones off once in a while.” (Financial Times)

Product Details


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
288 of 305 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A surprisingly unfocused book about focus August 8, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Daniel Goleman's writings about emotional intelligence (EQ) have become a central element of human resource and leadership development. That earlier work, its importance and wide scale adoption raised the bar for this book -- Focus. A bar that Goleman misses, not for the lack of ideas, but for the surprisingly disjointed approach and arguments of his chapters. Its a four star book - worth reading if you have the time, but its ok if you miss this one particularly if you have read other books about the brain, attention or social science. Here is why:

This book covers ground that others have already written about and explained. From the Stamford Marshmallow study to discussions about how the internet is rotting your brain, Goleman breaks little new ground nor offers really new advice or insight. If you have read other books about these subjects than take a pass as Goleman is late to the game.

There is little in the way of an actionable idea or framework in focus, beyond talking about the way the brain works top down or bottom-up. Unlike EQ, there is not simple way to practice or adoption. Sorry but there is no focus quotient or FQ -- probably for good reason -- but this is a major gap.

The overall book's organizations is more of a collection separate essays -- a compendium rather than a book which require great focus.

Sorry, this is a book that is worth reading, but not one worth putting to the top of your list -- like EQ
Was this review helpful to you?
191 of 203 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Out Of Focus August 6, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The book is well written with every chapter peppered with amusing examples and stories making it an interesting read. Most of us will agree that we are deluged by interruptions and distractions every step of the way. Be it the Email, or IM or text. Multiply by a factor of ten or hundred to see the interruptions a teenager faces. If any one had any doubt about the impact it is having on each one of us and the society as a whole, the book settles the issue.

But wait, how do I increase my focus ?

Do I do Yoga? . How do I effectively increase my focus while juggling between office work, Kids , pickup and drop off at school, Homework, Baseball,Watching NBA, America's Got Talent, shopping for Milk . Yes, superficial advice in the book like "walk in the nature" are good but they are not silver bullets. (Smart games > oh yeah, my kid will love it to improve Focus as he spends hours on it) The entire book reflects one side of the coin with no real solutions to improve focus. There are chapters on "Well focused Leader" .. It is a fact that the leaders get all the help, best training programs with or without reading the book...It is a common man like you and me who needs help .

The book would be a 4 star if it was written by anyone other than Goleman,but the benchmark set by him for himself in Emotional Intelligence: 10th Anniversary Edition makes me give this book three stars. Well, don't be disappointed. Do yourself a favor by reading other master pieces like Thinking, Fast and Slow and of course, the all time great The Road Less Traveled, Timeless Edition: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and Spiritual Growth.
Was this review helpful to you?
78 of 85 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Informative, but lacks focus August 5, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I've been studying the topic of focus rather intently recently, trying to find new thinking in the area. I've read Pomodoro technique, Eat That Frog, was working on GTD, and so Goleman's book arriving just at the right time was a lovely surprise. The book starts with relatively laser-like focus on the eponymous title of the book. But after four or five chapters he drifts away. I loved the first section of the book. Really well done. But I came looking for a book on the topic of focus, and I found a book that riffed on several topics of interest to Goleman, many individually fascinating, but only peripherally related to the central idea of the book. In some books, that is a perfectly acceptable approach. With a book titled "Focus", that seems inexcusable.

I loved some other parts of the book. He talks better than I've ever heard someone talk about the 4-sigma empaths. He points out the limitations in the 10,000 hour rule around practice, and discusses eduation issues well. He discusses leadership. And he conlcueds by annoyingly riffing on economically illiterate sustainability issues at the end of the book.

He also hits a bunch of standard psychology topics, as with most modern popular psychology books, which becomes annoying when you've read the rest of them.

The first few chapters were clear and insightful enough to give the book 5 stars, had it continued as it was. If it had had just one digression into a topic like hyper-emotionally intelligent folks...it would also have been worth 5 stars. But the comprehensive lack of focus, and the annoying obligatory environmental bits at the end push it down to 3.5 stars.
Was this review helpful to you?
44 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How to pay attention and why it matters August 3, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
In part this book is aimed at helping readers become better at what they do. In this sense "Focus" is a sophisticated self-help book. Love what you do, do what you love and do it with focus and deliberate (and smart) practice and your life will be more rewarding.

In a larger sense this book is about saving the planet from the catastrophic threat of systems breakdown with reference to pollution, soil depletion and erosion, habitat destruction, global warming, etc.

The book is organized into seven parts. In the first, "The Anatomy of Attention," Goleman presents his ideas about "top-down" and "bottom up" drivers of behavior and how focus leads to "flow" which is "full absorption" in what we do. He makes a distinction between our attention being "hijacked" which leads to negative outcomes and our attention being deliberately allowed to drift, which leads to creative ideas. We find "balance" when we live our lives in harmony with periods of intense focus (but without undue stress) followed by periods of creative drift.

Goleman sees bottom-up drivers as coming from our more primitive brain modules and top down drivers as coming from the so-called higher brain modules such as the neocortex. These two systems must work in harmony for us to be successful and for us to be able to find and manage sustainable systems for the planet.

In Part II "Self-Aware" Goleman guides the reader toward seeing ourselves as others see us and gives a "recipe for self-control."

Part III "Reading Others" is mainly about what Goleman calls "The Empathy Triad," that is, three ways of being empathetic. Empathy comes from within ourselves and is partly the result of mirror neurons which allow us to feel what others are feeling.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars 3 for the price of 1
Breaks little individual new ground, but by insightfully weaving several different highly useful concepts together, presents an important framework one can consider to use their... Read more
Published 13 days ago by Steve Klein
4.0 out of 5 stars Lots of Political and Business Commentary, Not Much About Focus
I was hoping that this book would have a clear explanation of what focus is and insight into how to further develop and sharpen my own personal focus. Read more
Published 14 days ago by T. Blondie
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Enjoyable, understandable, refreshing and thrilling
Published 16 days ago by Quinet
5.0 out of 5 stars " It's human nature to want things easy and fast
Although many of the reviews I've read speak to Goleman's writing as being "unfocused," I think the message is in the media, i.e. Read more
Published 21 days ago by Global Citizen
1.0 out of 5 stars Not worth the time
Any chance I can get my money back? Poorly, poorly written book. Bounces all over the place and tries to hide its politically correct agenda. Read more
Published 26 days ago by P. Flanagan
5.0 out of 5 stars Another incredible book by Dr. Goleman.
Goleman writes not just about mental focus, but also about focusing on the big picture. Which we often miss, favoring focusing on the here and now. Read more
Published 1 month ago by terry cantlon
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good read.
Published 1 month ago by Lois
5.0 out of 5 stars Blew my mind.
This book blew my mind. Insightful and easy to read. Goleman is a sharp guy and I am very thankful for his research. Excited to read some of his other work.
Published 1 month ago by Northwest reader
5.0 out of 5 stars ANOTHER EI HIT
EXCELLENT AS USUAL FOR GOLEMAN. I HAVE ALL OF HIS E I WORKS AND USE THE PRINCIPLES EVERY DAY.
Published 1 month ago by Thomas
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting & informative
Interesting and informative discussion on focus. The author cited many studies to support his theory. Could have used fewer studies to support his position however. Read more
Published 2 months ago by James W. Worden
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only

More About the Author

DANIEL GOLEMAN is the author of the international bestsellers Emotional Intelligence, Working with Emotional Intelligence, and Social Intelligence, and the co-author of the acclaimed business bestseller Primal Leadership. He was a science reporter for the New York Times, was twice nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, and received the American Psychological Association's Lifetime Achievement Award for his media writing. He lives in the Berkshires.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Forums

There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Look for Similar Items by Category