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Psychology & The Mind

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A. Yoshida

A. Yoshida Pasadena, CA USA Member Since 2013
HELPFUL VOTES
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  • "Everyone makes mistakes"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The title of the book gives the impression that it's a self-help book. It's more of a psychology book explaining how people can make mistakes, think they are right, and honestly believe that. A good example is false memories. How often have you said, "I could have sworn I did that." You see the event in your head, yet evidence shows it didn't happen. You rationalize it ("someone must have moved it") instead of accept the most obvious answer ("I was mistaken in thinking that I did it").

    The books goes even further into big mistakes that people make and refuse to admit, such as in the criminal system where suspects are locked away for years ("I know he's the rapist so I'll interrogate him for hours until he finally confesses") until DNA finally proves their innocence. Fortunately for most people, they are not making mistakes that means life and death. The book contains many extreme examples. Still, this is great book to read to understand and recognize your own mistakes. For example, maybe a friend asked for a favor and you said no. Initially you felt a little guilty for saying no. Then you start justifying the answer, "She wouldn't have helped me if I had asked for a favor. She's always looking for someone to do her work." So that guilty feeling goes away. It's a rude awakening to realize how your feelings have completely changed -- you went from feeling a little guilty to thinking your friend is selfish and lazy.

    More

    Mistakes Were Made (But Not By Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions and Hurtful Acts

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Carol Tavris, Elliot Aronson
    • Narrated By Marsha Mercant, Joe Barrett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (525)
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    (354)
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    Why do people dodge responsibility when things fall apart? Why the parade of public figures unable to own up when they screw up? Why the endless marital quarrels over who is right? Why can we see hypocrisy in others but not in ourselves? Are we all liars? Or do we really believe the stories we tell? Backed by years of research and delivered in lively, energetic prose, Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me) offers a fascinating explanation of self-deception.

    Andrew says: "Insightful study of human behavior"
  • "True to its title... work smarter"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is a balanced blend of scientific data and storytelling. The author explains how your brain works (e.g., it's easier to drive and talk at the same time, but not read email and listen to a conversation). You learn what to do -- minimize multitasking as much as possible and don't do it at all when the two tasks rely on the same region of the brain. The author then takes you through the problems faced by two fictitious characters, Emily and Paul. The same scenes are replayed following his advice. Although the scenarios are fictitious, they represent common situations at work and how they can be handled poorly (as we react without thinking) or effectively (stay calm and re-direct it to a positive outcome). The pattern in the book of data, scene, and replay of scene reminds you to slow down and think, especially as you see how Emily and Paul in their rush to get things done, they end up doing rework to fix their problems. I think this is a book you can read again to identity bad habits you continue to do and work on those.

    More

    Your Brain at Work: Strategies for Overcoming Distraction, Regaining Focus, and Working Smarter All Day Long

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 42 mins)
    • By David Rock
    • Narrated By Bob Walter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
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    Meet Emily and Paul: The parents of two young children, Emily is the newly promoted VP of marketing at a large corporation while Paul works from home or from clients' offices as an independent IT consultant. Their lives, like all of ours, are filled with a bewildering blizzard of emails, phone calls, yet more emails, meetings, projects, proposals, and plans. Just staying ahead of the storm has become a seemingly insurmountable task.

    Lindblad says: "An amazing insight to the brain"
  • "Read one chapter a week"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The book lacked a tight integration of all the concepts into a step-by-step program. It approach varied -- sometimes it was about "try mediation... do this...." Then it switched to information, like how your brain works and how your willpower can be depleted. Then there's a little of both, like good behaviors are used to justify bad behavior ("I exercised today so I'm going to reward myself with some chocolates"). I think you need to read only one chapter a week to absorb the information and practice it for a few days before moving on to the next chapter.

    More

    The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of It

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D.
    • Narrated By Walter Dixon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2140)
    Performance
    (1784)
    Story
    (1763)

    Based on Stanford University psychologist Kelly McGonigal's wildly popular course The Science of Willpower, The Willpower Instinct is the first book to explain the new science of self-control and how it can be harnessed to improve our health, happiness, and productivity. Informed by the latest research and combining cutting-edge insights from psychology, economics, neuroscience, and medicine, The Willpower Instinct explains exactly what willpower is, how it works, and why it matters.

    Niv says: "life changing one of the best I read"
  1. Mistakes Were Made (But N...
  2. Your Brain at Work: Strat...
  3. The Willpower Instinct: H...
  4. .

A Peek at Catherine's Bookshelf

Helpful
Votes
59
 
TALLAHASSEE, FL, United States 124 REVIEWS / 124 ratings Member Since 2013 13 Followers / Following 22
 
Catherine's greatest hits:
  • How We Learn

    "Not very useful"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I've really enjoyed several of The Great Courses, so I was particularly disappointed in this one given that I've come to expect so much from them.

    Most of the course (about 90%) has to do with categorizing every single nuance of the study of learning and assigning every nuance a vocabulary term that the listener will most likely never hear or use again in their lifetime. Of the remaining 10%, 5% dealt with scientific studies that just made me think, "Wow, it's amazing what some scientists get paid to study."

    The remaining 5% that was actually useful information can be summed up as follows:

    1. Test yourself frequently in the process of studying. Don't wait to test yourself until you think you know the material. The more frequently you test yourself on whatever you're studying, the more likely you will retain the information. (This was from chapter 12)

    2. Test yourself continually, not only on the information you don't know, but also on the information that you believe you've learned. That's because you can actually teach yourself to forget that information by ignoring it in the review process. (This was from chapter 12)

    3. Foreign language learning can be greatly enhanced by listening to anything in that language in the background on a routine basis. Basically, when you do this, you are faking immersion, but your brain senses the immersion experience as being real and absorbs more than you think even if you don't understand what's being said. (I've forgotten the chapter for this, but I think it was around chapter 10 or so.)

    4. Your brain is always expandable at any time at any age. Forget your IQ, forget the way you think you learn best (by hearing, by seeing, by doing), and forget your past experiences with learning a particular topic. Just do it. It has been proven that the aquisition of a new language, in particular, prevents mental decline as we age. (From chapter 24)

    The only people who might find this course fascinating for more than what is listed above are teachers or parents what are interested in educational theory. As far as personal practical application goes, this course leaves a lot to be desired.

  • The Paradox of Choice: Why More is Less

    "Awesome book for overcoming perfectionism"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about The Paradox of Choice?

    The author made it clear not only how much the phenomenon of "overchoice" affects us, but how to overcome it.


    What other book might you compare The Paradox of Choice to and why?

    I've really never read anything similar.


    What three words best describe Ken Kliban’s voice?

    Aloof, clipped, and unemotional


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    The way to enjoy your choices more is to impose your own limits on choice.


    Any additional comments?

    As a recovering perfectionist, I found this book to be a wonderful guide to living a simpler, more satisfying life by limiting the choices that I have to make and by consciously choosing the amount of value that I assign to the choices that I do make.

  • Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm, and Confidence

    "Not as scientific as it sounds"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Hardwiring Happiness is not about brain science. It has very little to do with that topic. It is mostly about self-hypnosis and guided meditation.

    I purchased this book thinking that I would find scientific explanations about our sensation of happiness as it relates to exercise, nutrition, habits, experience, the weather, etc. What I found was a long, drawn-out version of the theory of positive thinking interspersed with eastern meditation. Do not misunderstand; I actually agree with the idea of positive thinking to some degree. I certainly understand that it matters what you choose to focus on - and this is the author's point. I take issue with the marketing of this book as "the new brain science." I didn't find much science.

    There is some science (very little, but some) scattered throughout, but the meditation mysticism takes over everything and was not adequately addressed in the description of the book. The author is leading readers into guided meditation without admitting that he is doing so. I would not have purchased this book had I known that to be the case.

    The only good thing that I can say is that the author is right that, at least to some degree, we choose our thoughts and we choose how to focus our thoughts. However, I choose not to be drawn into eastern meditation, and the author's real intent should have been disclosed.

  • Dreamland: Adventures in the Strange Science of Sleep

    "Interesting but not as scientific as I'd hoped"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Dreamland by David. K. Randall was an interesting foray into the subject of sleep, and it did have scientific merit (I particularly enjoyed the part about sleep studies), but it fell off the deep end in a couple of places, especially where dreams are discussed.

    There is a lot to be said for the amount of research that went into this book. The explanations of what physically happens when we sleep, the discussion of various sleep medications, and the evidence used to support the importance of sleep were well presented.

    The narrators performace was good - not stellar - but good.

    The problem that I had with the scientific merit of the book came primarily with the discussion of dream interpretation. First of all, I should say that I studied that topic in college - I don't have a degree in it or anything - but I studied it enough to write a well-researched paper about dreams.

    There are a myriad of factors that can influence dreams including, but not limited to: allergies, bedding, sounds you hear while you're sleeping, effects of medications, foods you've eaten (particularly the acidity of the foods), things you've experienced that day (like watching a weird TV show or movie), the weather, etc. I don't recall any of these factors being seriously presented. If they were, it was in passing to the point that I don't remember it with the exception of a limited discussion about things you've experienced that day. The author did account for that one factor, but the other factors are so important that to dismiss them and concentrate solely on Freudian and superstitious interpretation was, in my opinion, downright irresponsible.

    Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone interested in studying sleep, just note that some of it is, at best, poorly researched.



Tad Davis

Tad Davis Philadelphia, PA USA 07-07-13 Member Since 2005
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  • "Research-based tips on thinking"

    37 of 39 helpful votes

    Markman lays out some useful strategies for improving your thinking. The tips aren't pulled out of thin air, as they are in some books on the topic; they're based on Markman's research and the research of others in the field.

    One important technique is to evaluate your understanding of a topic by trying to explain it to yourself. Be honest in acknowledging where your explanations break down or gloss over a difficulty; then work on those until you *do* get them. (I've seen this suggestion in other contexts, where it's been described as the "Einstein technique," though I'm not really sure how that name came to be associated with it.)

    Another important point is to recognize your mind's limitations - not just *your* mind, but *everybody's*. The human brain, according to Markman, can usually only process three distinct features of an experience; so he recommends regularly summarizing what you've learned by listing three main points. With careful selection, it's possible to use those points as triggers to a wider array of knowledge: the brain is like a fishing net, where latching onto one point can lead you to others. (My analogy, not Markman's.)

    Markman offers some useful cautions as well. Especially in group settings, it's important to pause before making a final decision: feeling the visceral "click" when smart thinking leads to a breakthrough can be physically pleasurable; but you shouldn't let that glow influence your evaluation of the breakthrough. Wait a couple of days before you act on it.

    Sean Pratt is a particularly effective narrator for this kind of material. He's done many titles for Gildan Media, and their titles in the self-development or "science for daily life" area tend to be a cut above the norm.

    If you like this book, you may also enjoy "Five Elements of Effective Thinking" by Michael Starbird and Edward Burger. There is some overlap between the books; I found both of them helpful.

    More

    Smart Thinking: Three Essential Keys to Solve Problems, Innovate, and Get Things Done

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 11 mins)
    • By Art Markman
    • Narrated By Sean Pratt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (243)
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    (203)
    Story
    (203)

    Think smart people are just born that way? Think again. Drawing on diverse studies of the mind, from psychology to linguistics, philosophy, and learning science, Art Markman, Ph.D., demonstrates the difference between "smart thinking" and raw intelligence, showing listeners how memory works, how to learn effectively, and how to use knowledge to get things done. He then introduces his own three-part formula for listeners to employ "smart thinking" in their daily lives.

    Tad Davis says: "Research-based tips on thinking"

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    Niv says: "life changing one of the best I read"
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    To most of us, learning something 'the hard way' implies wasted time and effort. Good teaching, we believe, should be creatively tailored to the different learning styles of students and should use strategies that make learning easier. Make It Stick turns fashionable ideas like these on their head and will appeal to all those interested in the challenge of lifelong learning and self-improvement.

  • How Not to Be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking (






UNABRIDGED) by Jordan Ellenberg Narrated by Jordan Ellenberg

    How Not to Be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By Jordan Ellenberg
    • Narrated By Jordan Ellenberg
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    (42)
    Performance
    (35)
    Story
    (35)

    Ellenberg chases mathematical threads through a vast range of time and space, from the everyday to the cosmic, encountering, among other things, baseball, Reaganomics, daring lottery schemes, Voltaire, the replicability crisis in psychology, Italian Renaissance painting, artificial languages, the development of non-Euclidean geometry, the coming obesity apocalypse, Antonin Scalia's views on crime and punishment, the psychology of slime molds, what Facebook can and can't figure out about you, and the existence of God.

    Michael says: "Great book but better in writing"
  • The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind (






UNABRIDGED) by Michio Kaku Narrated by Feodor Chin

    The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Michio Kaku
    • Narrated By Feodor Chin
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (474)
    Performance
    (436)
    Story
    (434)

    For the first time in history, the secrets of the living brain are being revealed by a battery of high-tech brain scans devised by physicists. Now what was once solely the province of science fiction has become a startling reality. Recording memories, telepathy, videotaping our dreams, mind control, avatars, and telekinesis are not only possible; they already exist.

    Gary says: "More breadth than depth"
  • The Myth of Mirror Neurons: The Real Neuroscience of Communication and Cognition (






UNABRIDGED) by Gregory Hickok Narrated by Eric Martin

    The Myth of Mirror Neurons: The Real Neuroscience of Communication and Cognition

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Gregory Hickok
    • Narrated By Eric Martin
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    The Myth of Mirror Neurons, neuroscientist Gregory Hickok reexamines the mirror neuron story and finds that it is built on a tenuous foundation - a pair of codependent assumptions about mirror neuron activity and human understanding. Drawing on a broad range of observations from work on animal behavior, modern neuroimaging, neurological disorders, and more, Hickok argues that the foundational assumptions fall flat in light of the facts.

  • Labor Unions, Management, and Industrial/Organizational (I/O) Psychology: Comparison to Economics and Sociology (






UNABRIDGED) by Steven G. Carley Narrated by Al Remington

    Labor Unions, Management, and Industrial/Organizational (I/O) Psychology: Comparison to Economics and Sociology

    • UNABRIDGED (43 mins)
    • By Steven G. Carley
    • Narrated By Al Remington
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    Comparing to the history of economics and sociology is the United States history of I/O psychology in investigation of this hypothetical viability. The conclusion is for the neglect of labor union issues by applied psychologists are for two crucial reasons to exist being the dark of early pro-union psychologists and the reluctance of I/O psychologists to address the presence of conflict among employees and employers.

  • Publishing Bundle: Experiments in Psychology, Developmental Psychology (Taking Sides), Cult in America (






UNABRIDGED) by Steven G. Carley Narrated by Ken Stephens

    Publishing Bundle: Experiments in Psychology, Developmental Psychology (Taking Sides), Cult in America

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Steven G. Carley
    • Narrated By Ken Stephens
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    A Psychology Journal: Experiments in Psychology takes a look at the different psychological experiments conducted over the years. This experimental conduction includes a description of how to perform many of the popular experiments. Some of these popular experiments include Hebb's sensory deprivation experiment, Thorndike's puzzle box experiments, Milgram's obedience experiment, and many, many more.

  • PTSD Recovery Foundations: Understanding How PTSD Works, and How to Get Better (






UNABRIDGED) by Jeremy P. Crosby Narrated by Jeremy P. Crosby

    PTSD Recovery Foundations: Understanding How PTSD Works, and How to Get Better

    • UNABRIDGED (59 mins)
    • By Jeremy P. Crosby
    • Narrated By Jeremy P. Crosby
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    In PTSD Recovery Foundations, Dr. Jeremy P. Crosby provides, in everyday language, the necessary foundation for understanding the most critical PTSD issues. The mental patterns involved in PTSD are described with explanation of the techniques and skills used to cope with symptoms and effectively engage the healing process.

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  • The Genesis of Desire: Studies in Violence, Mimesis, and Culture (






UNABRIDGED) by Jean-Michel Oughourlian Narrated by Bob Goding

    The Genesis of Desire: Studies in Violence, Mimesis, and Culture

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 9 mins)
    • By Jean-Michel Oughourlian
    • Narrated By Bob Goding
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    How can a couple be saved when they have declared war on one another? By helping them realize that desire originates not in the self, but in the other. There are strategies that can help, which Dr. Oughourlian has prescribed successfully to his patients. This work, alternating between case studies and more theoretical statements, convincingly defends the possibility that breakups need not be permanent.

  • Unthink: And How to Harness the Power of Your Unconscious (






UNABRIDGED) by Chris Paley Narrated by Jonathan Keeble

    Unthink: And How to Harness the Power of Your Unconscious

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Chris Paley
    • Narrated By Jonathan Keeble
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
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    Your life is dominated by your unconscious mind: by thoughts you're unaware of and movements you don't realise you are making. Words, colours, mannerisms, and other cues you don't realise are affecting you change what you think. The confidence you have in your ability to reason and to consciously choose what to do is caused by a series of illusions that scientists are only just beginning to understand. The discovery of these illusions will change the way we see ourselves more than the discoveries of Darwin and Copernicus.

  • How to Piss off Depression (






UNABRIDGED) by Jade Mckenzie Stone Narrated by Hillary Hawkins

    How to Piss off Depression

    • UNABRIDGED (5 mins)
    • By Jade Mckenzie Stone
    • Narrated By Hillary Hawkins
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    How to Piss off Depression is a fun little audiobook of ideas designed to piss off depression! You get 10 tips and a donkey cover model. What else could you possibly need? Get this if you're feeling pissy and give it to a friend who's had too much sugar honey ice tea.

  • Powers of Two: Finding the Essence of Innovation in Creative Pairs (






UNABRIDGED) by Joshua Wolf Shenk Narrated by Andrew Garman

    Powers of Two: Finding the Essence of Innovation in Creative Pairs

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 26 mins)
    • By Joshua Wolf Shenk
    • Narrated By Andrew Garman
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    A revelatory synthesis of cultural history and social psychology that shows how one-to-one collaboration drives creative success. Weaving the lives of scores of creative duos - from John Lennon and Paul McCartney to Marie and Pierre Curie, to Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak - Joshua Wolf Shenk identifies the core qualities of that dizzying experience we call "chemistry". Revealing the six essential stages through which creative intimacy unfolds, Shenk draws on new scientific research and builds an argument for the social foundations of creativity - and the pair as its primary embodiment.