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Showing 1-10 of 144 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 188 reviews
on August 20, 2014
As one that rarely purchases physical copies; I have to say that I really enjoyed 59 Seconds. Wiseman is insightful, funny, and offers deep insight into the human psychology, in a easy and accessible way. It's a great book to add to one's collection, and does the job as a good conversation starter. From people not into psychology, all the way to people educated in psychological theory, 59 Seconds serves as a transformative, insightful book into changing your life.

P.S. One part of the book I really enjoyed was when the author exhorted you to smile. Just try it now! Smile for 10 seconds. Even if you don't feel happy, force yourself to physically smile.

How did you feel? Happier? Wiseman explains that phsyically smiling actually makes you psychologically believe that you are happy, and does wonders to your move. I never knew that before!
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on August 18, 2015
This is one of those books that are all over the place. From how to encourage your kids towards success to the best way to speed dating (or effective dating). It's like a Swiss Army knife for life and all the tips and hacks are condensed in a one minute principle (sort of). The book relies in studies and experiments done on the different topics as well as it analyzes counterparts and critics to some of the theories or conclusions. It's a good curious read. You might find some topic of interest. Good buy.
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on September 13, 2013
This book is based entirely on scientific research and for that reason it doesn't fit the mold of other self-help books. For example, we've all heard about visualizing our goals and they will magically happen. Just picture yourself slender and your mind will take care of the rest. Wrong! Turns out that when researching actual people doing this, the visualizers DID FAR WORSE than the control group. What gives? Well, turns out that visualizing the goal already done may actually give us the reward before we do the work. The people who achieved their goals better than others instead focused on making a plan and they used their visualization skills to plan in advance how they would handle the most likely stumbling blocks they would encounter. Like deciding, instead of depriving myself of that brownie altogether and end up binging, I'm going to take one luscious bite because the rest of the bites are never as good as that first one anyway. This is but one of many, many helpful insights I've gotten from this book, which is thankfully mostly devoid of ridiculous pop psychology which tends to change its collective mind every 30 minutes anyway.
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on September 14, 2013
This book is a fun romp through the conflicting heaps, piles, stacks and mountains of self-help gibberish that's out there in all forms and formats. I liked his fast paced, no-nonsense approach. I thought it was well-edited, and entertaining. Best of all, I really, really, really enjoyed all the times the book confirmed something I've suspected from my own life experience/experimentation. Give me a ticket to Europe any day over a new suit or piece of jewelry or artwork! Absolutely experiences trump objects for giving people joy!

This is a nice summary for people who are well-read in the category of self-help and who are willing to be flexible in their thinking. Lots of what we think we know is empirically wrong. How interesting is that?!?!
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on March 21, 2014
Saying Visualisation does not work because you did a test on some volunteers and it did not work with them, sais more about the tests than about visulaisation. I have used Visualisation to give me confidence and the desired outcome while acting on stage and I hear Arnold Schwarzenegger did the same when seeing himself winning Mr Universe and becoming a successful Hollywood actor. I think the test is missing some criteria that makes visualisation a very effective method for seeing then achieving success. And unfortunately this makes me question every other test in the book.
I can say that the visualisation I did successfully also involved looking at the alternatives of success IE failure and wanting to avoid that and also seeing myself performing and watching people cracking up with laughter then standing and giving an ovation, all of which came true.
I guess what I am saying is that it may be difficult to replicate the sub modalities of a particular exercise when getting others, presumably unaware of the technique, to perform it.
I prefer Napolean Hill's approach to finding proof in Think and Grow Rich, where he interviews those who are already successful to find out their methods as opposed to trying to get others to perform them and get the same results. Test subjects may be missing a very important element DESIRE.
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on July 19, 2010
You'll have to read the author's explanation at the beginning for why this book is rather obscurely titled. Nevertheless, the basic idea is very good: as we all know, there is a lot of junk to be found in the "self-help" section of bookstores. Which is too bad, considering that psychological and cognitive science research is advancing steadily and discovering all sorts of things that work (or don't work) when it comes to modifying human behavior and improve our lives. Wiseman takes on obviously pertinent topics, such as happiness (whatever that is), persuasion, motivation, creativity, attraction, relationships (obviously), stress, decision making, parenting and personality. In each case he goes back to the primary literature and presents the reader with what actually works, as opposed to what self-appointed self-help gurus tell you works (often without a trace of evidence, seemingly pulling notions our of their behind). The Mozart effect to turn your child into a genius by simply listening to music? Sorry, doesn't work. Releasing stress by kicking and screaming? Bad idea, it only makes you more angry. Playing hard to get on dates? Counterproductive. And so on and so forth. It's an invaluable book full of actually useful advice, even though at times it reads a bit too much like a list. If you can, catch the author give a live talk, it will be both informative and entertaining.
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on November 20, 2012
You don't have to read very far into 59 Seconds: Think a Little, Change a Lot, before you realize that Richard Wiseman is a man who does his homework. Shortly after his encounter with Sophie, a bright, successful management consultant, the author describes collecting hundreds of behavioral research studies on the subject of increasing happiness. He shows that he is not afraid to get his own hands dirty and is as capable of conducting his own research as he is shining light on the work of others. As the title suggests, this is a self-help book, the aim of which is to equip readers with simple and effective techniques for making significant changes in their lives. One by one, Wiseman dispels common myths about how to achieve happiness, the mysteries of attraction and relationships, effective parenting and other key aspects of the human condition.

Material is broken down into ten chapters along with an introduction and a conclusion. Through the judicious use of humor and wit, each chapter ends with a 59-second blueprint for navigating the minefield of life. The book encapsulates hundreds of scientific behavioral studies, often with counterintuitive results.
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on June 5, 2017
Great book with a lot of good content that is broken down to as much or as little detail as you need to start taking action!
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on August 8, 2015
The book analyzes key research for 10 actions you can make part of your immediately to change for the better. Each action has a lengthy description of the research and a "59 second" section summarizing it. The lengthy descriptions were too slow to develop and I sometimes lost interest as I read all the detail, but the punchy summaries were all quite interesting and excellent to read.
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on July 9, 2017
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