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Game Changers Paperback – December 17, 2018
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- Item Weight : 15.2 ounces
- ISBN-10 : 0008318638
- ISBN-13 : 978-0008318635
- Product Dimensions : 6.02 x 1.02 x 9.21 inches
- Publisher : Nonfiction (December 17, 2018)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #91,204 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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It's written in a more conversational tone—taking a closer look at life purpose, happiness, and spirituality. He by no means forgets to include worthwhile advices on physical and mental performances. Simply put, the book is a compilation of powerful recommendations he distilled from over 450 conversations/interviews with accomplished guests.
This is quite an intimate book, representing essential values Asprey has assimilated throughout his experiences. Although I haven’t listened to more than 100 of his interviews, I could feel that the present book was carefully written—he took the time and energy to document something precious.
Asprey divides the book into 3 main parts—smarter, faster, happier—where each part is broken down into chapters filled with a total of 46 “laws”. One of the highlights is that at the end of each “law” we find a honest/feasible action plan to implement the advice, as well as recommended readings and podcast episodes for further research.
Before sharing thoughts about the content itself, I just wanted to mention I could draw a direct comparison between Tim Ferris’s Tools of Titans and Game Changers. They both compiled hundreds of interviews into a book, and even though Tim Ferris and Dave Asprey have similar interests such as high-performance, health, business, spiritualism, science, happiness, and self-improvement, there are differences on how the information is laid out throughout the chapters. Ferris summarizes key takeaways from each interviewee, one-by-one. Asprey, however, distills the information in a broader and more interconnected perspective after running his “statistical analysis”. That said, Tools of Titans and Game Changers complement each other positively.
Now let me share with you some pieces of advice I took note to further reflect and explore as I get the chance to read the book again—but on a slower pace next. The “laws” are in order of appearance.
[Law 1] To focus on what matters most by saying “no” more often. Knowing what matters the most brings clarity, making it easy to take decisions and focus our attention and energy exclusively. As a regression, I could connect this “law” with another valuable book called “Essentialism” by Greg McKeown.
[Law 3] Words are powerful. We should be mindful by choosing truthful words to build trust and break free from our own limitations. Asprey explains how certain words can be detrimental to us. He suggests us to pay attention to often used words that make us weak—sharing also techniques to avoid them.
[Law 8] Asprey encourages us to access altered states by taking advantage of valuable tools we have these days, ranging from silent meditation retreats all the way to trusted ayahuasca experiences in the Amazon.
[Law 10] We must learn to confront our irrational fear of criticism and failure. Negative emotions are rooted in fear, while positive ones are rooted in trust. When we manage to spend more time in the positive states, a sense of comfort surrounds us. Asprey shares tips on how to dissolve expectations and attachments that may be holding us back.
[Law 12] Passion and purpose are key to happiness. Finding the things we care about and devote time and energy will certainly pay off in the long run. As Asprey puts: “Every idea that doesn’t work is simply a stepping-stone to a bigger success. Success comes when you are still curious and still learning.”
[Law 20] Striving for quality sleep is better than more sleep. Fascinating studies are presented to help us sleep thoroughly. I enjoyed reading about wild animals patterns, that they prefer sleeping on the hard ground with their heads slightly uphill. It seems that maintaining our heads slightly above our hearts while sleeping may be a good idea to avoid the increase of pressure in the brain due to the blood flow circulation under the effects of gravity. Reading about sleep made me think about an important and personally favorite book called “Why We Sleep” by Matthew Walker.
[Law 22] Learning to move our bodies the right way is a must for long-term health. I sincerely appreciate this point because we often forget to prioritize this aspect due to high demands we face at work. Going back to the basics and getting the right posture and movement patterns will certainly improve the quality of our lives. Asprey shares good recommendations and I’ve used some of them—after listening to his podcasts—in tandem with my favorite ones. GMB is formed by a small but knowledgeable group of experts in physical therapy, gymnastics, martial arts, and human movement that have been developing courses and tutorials to help us move with more autonomy. Both of GMB’s training programs, the Elements and the Vitamin, have helped me immensely with rock climbing performance. In terms of books, my favorite book calls “The Practice of Natural Movement” by Erwan Le Corre. It’s a gem!
[Law 25] This is a profound topic on meaningful food consumption. I was touched by Cynthia Garcia’s story on how she overcame her struggles through a combination of dietary changes with psychological and spiritual work. The message here is that emotional eating is sadly entrenched in our culture that we aren’t aware of the effects. We learn tips that signal excess of emotional eating.
[Law 26] Here we find the solution to the previous “law”—which is about eating real food, about paying attention to what our relatives at generations ago used to eat, about eating genuinely according to our true nature and needs. This topic stands alone as a concise diet guide.
[Law 33] Striving for happier habits improves our creativity, productivity, relationships, and even the odds to earn more money. But besides that, one of his interviewees, Vishen Lakhiani, got my attention. He says we should focus on “end goals” described as:  the things we want to experience in life,  ways in which we want to grow a as human being, and  ways in which we want to contribute to the world.
[Law 35] Seeking out social interaction through a supportive community brings positive impacts in many aspects. Dr. Zak explains the role of oxytocin, a hormone released during social bounding. It’s intriguing to know how this hormone works—on a feedback loop—amplifying empathy throughout human connections.
[Law 39] Here we learn about the importance of proper breathing. Wim Hof is a pioneer of extremely cold temperature exposure through breathing techniques. Even though I've taken cold showers 2 times a week since 2016 and learned to prefer lukewarm showers over hot ones on the other days, I've been delaying to test Hof's exercises since I first heard about his breathing techniques.
[Law 41] One of my favorite excerpts of the book is as follows: “Spend more time outdoors. See trees. Smell plants. Taste real food. Sweat in the sun. Shiver when it’s cold. Give your nervous system a taste of the environment it evolved in so you can reap the returns as your biology changes to increase your performance.”
[Law 45] The power of forgiveness can’t be beat. Asprey encourages us to forgive with the same intensity we bring our mission in life in order to access new levels of energy and happiness. This “law” was probably my favorite one—insights that I hope to carry for life.
I hope this review helps you. Even if you have listened to most of Asprey's interviews, this book is a convenient piece to revisit the information in a well-documented version. Game Changers has the potential to impact our lives positively in many forms. After all, it’s about taking the time to discover our own priorities, then finding the right action plan at the end of each “law” to create better habits or boost our performances over time.
Take good care,
I will skim the rest of the book but it is not organized in a manner to quickly grasp points. The chapter layouts are odd. There is a summary for sections, if you can find them. I’m returning it and asking for my money back. I will likely stop buying his over-priced products as well. He’s just not my kind of guru anymore.
Starting off the advertising assault, the "Praise For Game Changers" on the back cover consists of all other self-improvement authors. Best-selling authors pushing each other's books to sell to the same customers. No reviews from scientists, newspapers, or any source that does not have a product they are also trying to push to the same target audience.
Throughout the book, the book mentions the things that lots of successful people do. But the successful people mentioned are mostly people who run companies that sell self-improvement products. Like Brendon Burchard, founder of High Performance Academy, and Tony Stubblebine, founder of Coach.me (those two are in the first few pages). There seems to be few references to influential people that aren't trying to also push their own products to the same target audience that Dave Asprey is. It seems like these self-improvement CEOs/authors are mostly the "Game Changers" the book references. Don't get me wrong, starting a company that grosses millions is impressive, regardless of what the company sells (self-improvement in most of these cases). But I'd like to see a little bit more diverse sample size of "Game Changers."
The way this book does reference other successful people is almost in a laughable way sometimes. "Steve Jobs credited LSD with contributing to his success with Apple." This definitely feels like Asprey has an argument he personally wants to use and is using sparse facts to sell it, rather than drawing facts from data. I feel like Steve Jobs would rank LSD use very, very low as a contributor to his success (if he would mention it at all).
The biggest put-off about this book though, was the constant referneces to his own and others products. The recommended reading/listening that is listed throughout the book is almost entirely, if not entirely, from his podcast or are products that people he interviews on his podcast sell. It would be nice if there was some recommended reading/listening from others (and I would feel like these sections existed for more than just advertising).
As a disclaimer, I did not finish this book. There is probably some really good information in it. But when reading it I got the feeling that I was the product. That the propose of this book was primarily to get me into the Bulletproof brand so that I could improve myself, rather than simply improve myself.
Top reviews from other countries
Otherwise the author just brushes over many topics without really delving into any of them in detail.
Seems the book is just an overgrown advert for the long list of podcasts and other peoples books and programs
you should check out so you can get the benefit and information that I would expect to be described in a lot more
detail in this offering.
Philosophically there is probably nothing new, but it is great to see the references to medical studies and research backing up historical common sense. Asprey has the additional advantage of being a big player himself, which has given him access to so many other fascinating high achievers.
I enjoyed this more than I expected to. Thank you for an inspirational read.
simple instructions how you can tak eprductivity and energy to the next level