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On Second Thought: Outsmarting Your Mind's Hard-Wired Habits Paperback – September 6, 2011
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"Eminently "Gladwellian"...Herbert clearly shows the effects of various daily mental maneuvers and peppers the text with explanations of how the human mind has evolved." —Washington Post
"Brings a twist [to the psychology shelf]...could keep us from making mistakes whose consequences range from dying in an avalanche to failing to follow directions because we don't like the font they're written in." —Sharon Begley, Newsweek
"Think twice before you trust your gut...Herbert uses real-world examples and cutting-edge research to show how heuristics--hardwired mental shortcuts we think of as intuition--can both help and hinder the decisions we make every day." —US News & World Report
“Counters the argument set forth in titles like Malcom Gladwell's Blink… successfully shows readers how ancient shortcuts can impact our modern living and how to use this knowledge to make better decisions.” —Library Journal
“Wray Herbert displays his gifts as a science writer par excellence…On Second Thought goes a long way toward leveling the mental playing field by outing the hidden power of our unconscious mental models.” —Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence
"There is one way to be rational, and many ways of being irrational. With stories, anecdotes, and studies, Wray Herbert takes us through a guided tour of our many irrational tendencies, holding our hand, and helping us to see the mistakes we all make every day."—Dan Ariely, author of Predictably Irrational
“A wonderful book that should be read by the public and experts alike…the most complete statement currently available on the foibles manifest in everyday decision-making and surely one of the most interesting books that I have had the pleasure of reading." —Ellen Langer, author of Mindfulness
“Wray Herbert is one of our finest writers of psychological science…here he blends the most fascinating findings from cognitive psychology with his own experiences into a seamless story of the mental biases and quirks that help us navigate through life—and occasionally get us stuck in brambles. On second thought . . . I’d say the same thing.”
—Carol Tavris, coauthor of Mistakes Were Made
“A fascinating and important book that reveals the invisible errors we make time and again… don’t tackle any big adventures or major undertakings until you’ve read On Second Thought. It could save your nest egg, your relationship, and even your life. No kidding!”—Sarah Susanka, author of The Not So Big Life
“From ‘looming maladaptive style’ to the ‘cooties heuristic,’ Wray Herbert takes us on a journey through the styles of thought we usually take for granted. In clear and lively prose, he describes psych experiments and real-life quandaries that reveal how our cognitive habits get in our way – or, occasionally, save our skins. It all adds up to a fascinating book that is altogether a treat. —Robin Marantz Henig, author of Pandora's Baby: How the First Test Tube Babies Sparked the Reproductive Revolution
From the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
WRAY HERBERT has been writing about psychology and human behavior for more than 25 years, including regular columns for Newsweek and Scientific American Mind. He has also been science and health editor at US News & World Report, psychology editor for Science News, and editor-in-chief of Psychology Today. He currently serves as director for science communication at the Association for Psychological Science, where he writes a popular blog about the latest in psychological research. He lives in Washington, D.C.
From the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
This one is the least nuanced, most bluntly reductionist, most under-argued, and least successful of the ones I have read. I'd recommend THE ART OF CHOOSING, THE INVISIBLE GORILLA, THE HIDDEN BRAIN, PREDICTABLY IRRATIONAL, or MISTAKES WERE MADE (BUT NOT BY ME) as much better explained, more carefully argued, and better written.