66 of 70 people found the following review helpful
Finally, a credible, science-based book of "You Can Do It!!",
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This review is from: Succeed: How We Can Reach Our Goals (Hardcover)
I loved this book, because it combines two of my favorite things: surprising and interesting science described in simple English, and the writing of a brilliant and very funny woman.
First, the science: "Succeed" describes different aspects of setting and achieving goals from the perspective of research psychology. Every suggestion in this book is backed up with, "... and here is how psychologists proved that it works:", with a discussion of some crazy study involving vinegar Kool-aid or internet disses or Robin Williams. The other cool thing about Dr. Grant Halvorson's work here is that she takes interesting psychology results and explains succinctly how to use them in real ways to improve your life, in whatever area of your life that needs improvement. Her advice is left general, which I like; what it takes to lose weight or change jobs or quit smoking is at heart the same stuff, and Dr. Grant Halvorson knows that stuff well. The only downside of this book is a minor one-- she will have you convinced that, say, action X is exactly the right one to take for a given situation, but instead of moving on, she'll repeat a few more times why you should take action X and give you many more convincing studies than you need. They're still interesting, but from a proselytizing standpoint, enough already! You had me at the second or third study!
Next, the writer: Dr. Grant Halvorson's writing reads like that girlfriend you turn to when you're going through a rough patch, who takes you out for a beer and tells you how not only has she been there, here's how she got through it, here's what worked for your other friends, and here, have another beer. She illustrates her intellectual points with perfect anecdotes from her own experience, e.g. with her prevention-focused German mother, her beloved, hapless philosopher husband, or the ending of her first marriage. She is not some ivory tower scientist; she has a personal understanding of how we struggle.
This book is life changing. If you want to finally, finally meet those goals you keep setting and falling short on, (or figure out whether you should just chuck them and move on), you need "Succeed".