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Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder Hardcover – March 25, 2014

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Author One-on-One: Arianna Huffington and Mark Hyman

Mark Hyman

Arianna Huffington and Mark Hyman discuss Arianna's new book Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder.

Arianna Huffington is the chair, president, and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, a nationally syndicated columnist, and author of fourteen books. Mark Hyman, MD is a seven-time New York Times bestselling author—Including the recently released Blood Sugar Solution 10-Day Detox Diet—founder and medical director of The UltraWellness Center in Lenox, Massachusetts and Chairman of The Institute for Functional Medicine.

Mark Hyman: Arianna, in Thrive you talk about our need to redefine success beyond money and power to include what success means to us and that to live a truly successful life we need to integrate well-being, wisdom, wonder, and giving into our lives. You open the book describing your collapse in 2007 from exhaustion leading to a broken cheekbone and a round of visits to doctors and hospitals for tests. You were clearly running on empty, as I know so many people are—tell us about that experience and how it led to your larger wake-up call in terms of health and well-being.

Arianna Huffington: I had my personal wake-up call on April 6, 2007, when I found myself on the floor in a pool of blood. I had collapsed from exhaustion, breaking my cheekbone and cutting my eye. I was working eighteen-hour days to build The Huffington Post, while being a mom to my two teenage daughters. What this wake-up call taught me was that even though I was considered successful by our society's conventional measures of success, I was not living a successful life by any sane definition of success. Something had to radically change in my life.

As I've learned firsthand, overwork, stress, and sleep deprivation have profound effects on virtually every part of our lives. Our current model of success is not working for anyone. It’s not working for women, and really, it's not working for men either.

Mark Hyman: All so true. Stress really does impact your physical well-being, which is why I loved your discussion of the power of meditation in our lives to relieve stress and bring balance. You make the point that even a brief meditative moment can have a restorative effect. Tell us more about that and your daily practice.

Arianna Huffington: There is more and more scientific evidence about the impact of mindfulness and meditation in our lives. The list of all the conditions that these practices impact for the better—depression, anxiety, heart disease, memory, aging, creativity—sounds like a label on snake oil from the 19th century! Except this cure-all is real, and there are no toxic side effects. Indeed, 2013 was the year when meditation and mindfulness finally and overwhelmingly stopped being seen as something vaguely flaky, vaguely New Age-y, definitely California, and fully entered the mainstream.

I personally start every morning with at least 20 to 30 minutes of meditation. If you're just beginning, you can start by introducing 5 minutes of meditation into your day. Even just a few minutes will open the door to creating a new habit—and all the many proven benefits it brings.

Mark Hyman: Throughout the book you caution against the dangers of living in a permanently connected state. I agree that it is a growing problem in society today. I know over Christmas you participated in a digital detox yourself. Is it truly possible to disconnect, even when you are running the biggest online news site in the world?

Arianna Huffington: I'm happy to say that yes, it is possible! I spent the week between Christmas and New Year’s in Hawaii with my daughters, my sister, and my ex-husband—with no TV and no social media. Almost immediately, I was floored by the realization of just how much my phones had become almost physical extensions of myself—I would instinctively reach for them like phantom limbs! Unplugging meant rediscovering and savoring the moment for its own sake. Which is to say, taking in a view without tweeting it. Eating a meal without Instagramming it. Hearing my daughters say something hilarious and very shareable without sharing it. The unplugged version of myself was better able to give these things my full attention. And when I came back to the office, I was truly refreshed.

Mark Hyman: All important points. What do you want to see readers take away from this book?

Arianna Huffington: In the book, I pull together three threads: my personal journey and my hard-earned lessons; scientific studies about the importance of slowing down, sleep, meditation, and disconnecting from our devices; and many daily practices, tools, and techniques that can begin to transform our lives.

I very much hope that the book will chart another way forward—a way available to all of us right now, wherever we find ourselves. A way based on the timeless truth that life is shaped from the inside out—a truth that has been celebrated by spiritual teachers, poets, and philosophers throughout the ages, and has now been validated by modern science.

So I very much hope that the book will help make room in our definition of success for well-being, wisdom, wonder, and giving, and help us move from knowing what we need to do to actually doing it.

Review

“A convincing, compact, anecdote-laced guide for achievers of every stripe.”
—Elle

“In Thrive, Arianna urges all of us to get in touch with who we really are so that we can live life on our own terms. From the importance of sleep to the imperative to listen to our own inner voice for ways to deal with the daily time crunches we all feel, this book lays out a path for each of us to look within and make our lives more authentic and fulfilling.”
—Sheryl Sandberg

“Provides powerful ideas about how to approach life differently.”
—U.S. News

“At once intimate and formidable, this book is Arianna Huffington at her persuasive best. Thrive is a clarion call, a meditation, and a practical response to the question of how to live.”
—Susan Cain, author of New York Times bestseller Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking

“Refreshingly practical . . . Lean In may be able to tell women how to get what they want, but Thrive may help them to figure out what that is.”
—Businessweek

“Once in a generation, a book comes along that can truly transform your life. This is it. Thrive doesn’t show just how to become more successful; it shows how to realize and experience what matters most.” —Dean Ornish, founder of Preventive Medicine Research Institute, bestselling author of The Spectrum

“Full of compelling arguments (backed by substantial research) about why we need to redefine success.” –Real Simple

“A captivating look at what it takes to live a more meaningful, satisfying life.  Brimming with passion, supported by science, and crowned with practical insights, Arianna’s exceptional book will transform our workplaces, schools, and families.” -Adam Grant, Wharton professor and author of Give and Take

“More a-ha moments than an episode of Oprah.” -People

"Reading this book is the best thing you can do for yourself and your loved ones. A monumental work that will change your life, and your health." -David B. Agus, M.D., Professor of Medicine and Engineering, University of Southern California and author NY Times bestsellers, The End of Illness and A Short Guide to a Long Life  

“Begs us to redefine how we measure success: As women everywhere put their foot to the gas pedal in their careers, what happens when we go too far?” –Shape

“Filled with cutting edge scientific research, captivating stories, and straightforward everyday practices, [Thrive] is a call-to-action that informs, invigorates, and inspires all at once.” -Daniel J. Siegel, M.D., author of Brainstorm and Mindsight, professor, UCLA School of Medicine

"Arianna Huffington has written a passionate and much needed prescription for reshaping life from the inside out. Turn off your cell phone, your email, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and every other tool of the stressed-out, distracted world to spend some time thinking about grace, joy and wonder. You'll be glad you did." –Ellen Goodman, Pulitzer prize winning columnist and bestselling author of I Know Just What You Mean

"This is a generous, urgent, vital book, a chance to redefine how we keep score before it's too late. Arianna has given us a gift, and delivered it with style." -Seth Godin, bestselling author of The Icarus Deception

"Arianna’s honest, raw and compelling call for us to Thrive, in the midst of a jumbled, chaotic world by redefining what matters – well-being, wisdom, wonder, service and each other – is the right book, at the right time to heal us from our disconnection to ourselves and each other." -Mark Hyman, MD, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller, The Blood Sugar Solution

"Thrive is a book that makes me smile just thinking about it. It is a book of wit, wisdom, and practical advice for changing our lives by changing our values. After all, why should we be content just to live when we can thrive?" -Anne-Marie Slaughter, professor, Princeton University, author of What Works for Women at Work

"In our relentless pursuit of more and more success, we have lost touch with our true selves, our bodies, our families and our friends.  In Thrive Arianna brilliantly explores how we can climb out of our stressed out, over-committed lives and once again create lives of balance and well-being." -Jack Canfield, Co-author of The Success Principles(TM)

"Socrates, Plato, Aristotle…Arianna. Beyond politics, there is her wisdom, applicable to everyone. This book probably added ten years to my life, some of which I'll spend re-reading it." -Bill Maher, host of Real Time with Bill Maher,bestselling author of The New Rules

"Rich in worldly  wisdom and brimming with motivation, Arianna gently shows us how to face the craziness of life today with awareness, grace and a sense of humor.” -Congressman Tim Ryan, Ohio, author of A Mindful Nation

“You can feel Arianna's passion on every page of this book.  In Thrive, Arianna has created a new paradigm for redefining how to systematically build a life of  purpose and balance and accomplishment— the whole life we're all ultimately after.” -Tony Schwartz, CEO, The Energy Project, author of The Way We're Working Isn't Working

"Beautiful, bold and brilliant…. I did not just read this book, I entered into long conversations with it. Thrive profoundly transforms our understanding of success and wakes us up from the broken dreams we chase." -Elif Shafak, bestselling author of Honor and The Forty Rules of Love

"Warning:  The content of this book is highly contagious. Even slight exposure may set you on a path to far clearer seeing, a radical resetting of your priorities, deep contentment, and, of course, thriving. Chances are, it will also melt your heart."  -Jon Kabat-Zinn, professor, UMass Medical School, author of Full Catastrophe Living

“One of the most important books of this century.  Weaving a tapestry of home-spun wisdom, science and compelling life stories, this is a profoundly uplifting and practical book that has something for everyone.  A must read for anyone wishing to live life more fully.” -Richard J. Davidson, founder and chair, Center for Investigating Healthy Minds, University of Wisconsin-Madison

“Desperately needed in today’s Type A, hurry-up world. [Thrive] just screamed at me to slow down, turn off the inner dialogue, sleep more, and stay in daily touch with my source of being.” -Wayne Dyer
 

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Harmony; 1St Edition edition (March 25, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0804140847
  • ISBN-13: 978-0804140843
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 1.1 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (454 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,200 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Arianna Huffington is the chair, president, and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, a nationally syndicated columnist, and author of fourteen books. In May 2005, she launched The Huffington Post, a news and blog site that quickly became one of the most widely-read, linked to, and frequently-cited media brands on the Internet. In 2012, the site won a Pulitzer Prize for national reporting. In 2013, she was named to the Forbes Most Powerful Women list. In 2006, and again in 2011, she was named to the Time 100, Time Magazine's list of the world's 100 most influential people. Originally from Greece, she moved to England when she was 16 and graduated from Cambridge University with an M.A. in economics. At 21, she became president of the famed debating society, the Cambridge Union. She serves on several boards, including EL PAÍS, PRISA, the Center for Public Integrity, and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Her 14th book, Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder will be published by Crown in March 2014.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

143 of 169 people found the following review helpful By the GreatReads! TOP 500 REVIEWER on March 20, 2014
Format: Audible Audio Edition
Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder by Arianna Huffington is a truly inspiring and refreshing book everyone should read. The deluge of books for reviews almost prevented me from having a look. I am glad I managed to squeeze in time to discover what this book is all about.

In the book, Huffington spells out how one can live a great and healthy life. Her insightful advice coupled with her wonderful writing style makes the book really enjoyable. Her sage and sane advice about getting enough sleep, meditations and shifting one's core values beyond the control of money and power is truly life-changing and thought-provoking. This, in essence, is "the third metric." It is an attempt to redefine success and create a vibrant life full of wisdom and wonder.

One important aspect of the book is its advice to unplug from technology and social media. In a world hooked to the social media such advice may seem ill-conceived but from Huffington's perspective it is badly needed. Though the book has its own shortcomings, I honestly believe that many readers will take some of the advice to heart and be inspired to redefine success, create a life of well-being, wisdom and wonder the Arianna Huffington-way.
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89 of 106 people found the following review helpful By Brendon Burchard on March 25, 2014
Format: Hardcover
This is a brilliant book full of practical wisdom for dramatically improving your life. So many of the facts and stories shared here remind you of things that just got away from you in all the stress and time famine we deal with today: you forgot to be intentional, to sleep, to linger in the moments that matter with full presence, to be more understanding and empathetic and giving with others, to have a full life of fun and wonder outside of your inbox, to say "no" so that you don't drive your life into the ground. These might sound like common sense takeaways, but we all know that common sense is not always common practice. Sanity on the path to success, it turns out, is a choice. With all its tips on mindfulness, self-control, productivity, forgiveness, and giving, this book is a great roadmap for that journey.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Tough Lady on April 28, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am not through reading the book. I ordered the book before it hit the market after watching her being interviewed about the book. I had to put the book down because it was too much storytelling for me. I wish it was more concise. I admire Ms. Huffington and she is very honest in the book. I do believe that we need to redefine how we measure success. I retired from a fortune 500 company after 30 years, putting in the long hours and unused weeks of vacation.The $$'s and benefits were great, but once you're gone, you realize that all that stress and time spent for the sake of a company's bottom line, is not the best way to live. A good career is admirable but our personal and family life deserve the best of us.
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37 of 43 people found the following review helpful By AngelaT on June 16, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really wanted to finish the book since I paid for it but I just could not do it. Half way through it and basically it's the same one paragraph rewritten 5,000 different ways. Each paragraph restates what the paragraph before that said... and the one before that.... and....you get the idea. Good grief! It was horrible.
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247 of 312 people found the following review helpful By Wallaby on May 2, 2014
Format: Hardcover
I will save you $15 by giving you a Cliff's notes synopsis of this book. A friend previewed this book for a possible selection for our book group, in the non-fiction category. She thought it was awful and I agreed.
Huffington fell and hit her head, and in a moment of clarity she decided to make her life more meaningful, write a book and make more money. She suggests:

1. Don't work so hard! Money is not all that important. (Although I do not see AH giving away all her money now that she has found peace ) This only applies to millionaires who do not suffer when their income drops from six million to only five or so. She does not have any practical tips for all of us out here who work way too hard just to make expenses. And if we take the luxury of working less, we will be out of a job.

2. Don't be so hard on your employees and make them work dreadful overtime. No comment.

3. Learn to meditate and develop natural peace. (Again, this is expensive and it helps to have full time housekeepers )

4. Enjoy the ride, don't stress out , learn to live in the moment, cut out activities that waste your time.

5. Oh, and THE THIRD METRIC! It sounds like AH has found the MEANING OF LIFE ! A gimmick to sell this awful book. This is all it is: When you are just out of college and are working so hard to get ahead, you will think of others as competition. Do not waste this time in your life by working all the time. Enjoy being poor! It is better than realizing later that money does not define success. That is all the THIRD METRIC is.
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26 of 30 people found the following review helpful By patrick reilly on June 22, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Other than the author's truly touching comments and anecdotes concerning her mother, this book reads like it was ghost written by a speech writer. Lots of well chosen and valuable quotations with the depth of a young-adult review of great thinkers. Recommended for high school sophomores.
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