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Jordan E.

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  • reviews
  • 1
  • helpful vote
  • 22
  • ratings
  • Exactly What to Say

  • The Magic Words for Influence and Impact
  • By: Phil M. Jones
  • Narrated by: Phil M. Jones
  • Length: 1 hr and 14 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,629
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,099
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,069

Often the decision between a customer choosing you over someone like you is your ability to know exactly what to say, when to say it, and how to make it count. Phil M. Jones has trained more than two million people across five continents and over 50 countries in the lost art of spoken communication. In Exactly What to Say, he delivers the tactics you need to get more of what you want.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Handful of Good Scripts

  • By A. Yoshida on 05-28-18

Fundamentally Dishonest and Manipulative

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-28-18

This book is based on the premise that it is a good idea to get other people to do what you want by explicitly manipulative means, by using social pressure and tricks of language. It misunderstands the purpose of influence: it’s not to get what you want, but to allow yourself to be influenced, to come to a more complete understanding of others and the world. I’m all for using skills to communicate with the intention of simply effective communication, but this approach is downright Machiavellian.

  • The Power of Mindful Learning

  • By: Ellen J. Langer
  • Narrated by: Rachel Frawley
  • Length: 3 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    3.5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Performance
    3.5 out of 5 stars 2
  • Story
    3.5 out of 5 stars 2

In this audiobook, Ellen Langer uses her innovative theory of mindulness, introduced in her influential earlier book, to dramatically enhance the way we learn. Mindful learning takes place with an awareness of context and of the ever-changing nature of information. Learning without this awareness, has severely limited uses and often sets on up for failure. With stunning applications to skills as diverse as paying attention, CPR, investment analysis, psychotherapy, or playing a musical instrument, this audiobook is for all who are curious and intellectually adventurous. 

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Poor Science and Misleading Presentation, a deeply ideological book

  • By Jordan E. on 07-08-18

Poor Science and Misleading Presentation, a deeply ideological book

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 07-08-18

Let me start by saying this book raises some good points. Conditional learning is not done nearly enough in schools, and context does really matter when we learn. Even in physics, the “facts” depend on the underlying model we choose to use, what we decide to ignore and what we decide to focus on.

However, it’s a grossly ideological book, predicated on the idea that all cognitive differences and diseases are simply a consequence of our mindsets. This belief makes it’s crescendo in Chapter 6, when the author called into question the idea of intelligence (even a more nuanced view of multiple kinds of intelligence) because the idea of intelligence presupposes an external reality that can be correctly or incorrectly perceived. Yeah, that’s called physicalism, it’s the basis for all of modern science. Giving up physicalism just to make less-intelligent people feel better would be laughable if it weren’t so pernicious. Especially because she relies on it to actually do science, which she cites as evidence.

Of the science she does present, it’s entirely her own. This would be acceptable *maybe* for an autobiography, but not for a book. As a scientist she should know better. She has a chapter on the importance of novelty and the fact that games are more pleasant than work just because of our mindset, but makes no references to the vast literature on what is now called “gamification”. Doesn’t even say the word. She also wholly misrepresents rote memorization, calling it “overlearning”. Overlearning is a TYPE of memorization, and an ineffective one. Spaced repetition is the modern incarnation of science-backed memorization, and allows for long-term retention with minimal time invested. She makes no mention of the forgetting curve either. When she does talk about her own work, some of the studies are so badly constructed as to be laughable. You can’t overturn 50 years of neuroscience with a sample size of 30 and poorly-controlled experiments across cultures with multiple confounding variables. I’m sorry, it just doesn’t work that way. I don’t care if the author is from Harvard, bad science is still bad science. When you hear hoofbeats (assuming we’re in North America, because as you well know context matters), think horses, not zebras.

Instead of other scientists’ work or real-life examples, she cites fairy tales, primarily the Brothers Grimm, to make her points. These are only weakly connected to the point she is trying to make and their repeated use is questionable at best. All in all, this book is a train wreck of bad science, misrepresentation of existing science, and a few gold nuggets buried here and there. I would not recommend it.

  • Life in Half a Second

  • How to Achieve Success Before it's Too Late
  • By: Matthew Michalewicz
  • Narrated by: Matthew Michalewicz
  • Length: 5 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 178
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 158
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 155

What if there was a proven path to success? A path supported by science and research? A path that led to your goals and aspirations in less time, with less risk? Would you take it? Truthful and hard hitting, Life in Half a Second is the first 'fact-based' formula for achieving success in life and business. Proven through thousands of studies and decades of research, it presents the five doors you must walk through to achieve success in your career, business, or personal life.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Brilliant!!! Truly an invaluable manual on living with meaning & purpose.

  • By Cong on 05-08-16

Overall Good Book, A few mistakes

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 06-02-18

Overall I like this book. I think it provides a good framework for thinking about success at an individual perspective. However, some of what the author claims is wholly unsupported by research. For instance, he claims that telling other people your goals increases your commitment to them. This is true only for proximal goals, for goals that are immediately and quickly attainable, and not for longer term goals. Telling others your longer-term goals is a fast way to failure.

His insistence on visualization also has little to no support, and he completely glosses over the fact that habits control much of our lives independent of our desires (see Charles Duhigg) and that willpower is finite and can fail even when our desire may be strong(see Baumeister’s research).

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Quiet

  • The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking
  • By: Susan Cain
  • Narrated by: Kathe Mazur
  • Length: 10 hrs and 39 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 12,862
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,146
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 11,082

At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking, reading to partying; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over brainstorming in teams. Although they are often labeled "quiet," it is to introverts that we owe many of the great contributions to society--from van Gogh’s sunflowers to the invention of the personal computer.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Clamorous Praise for "Quiet"

  • By Joshua Kim on 06-10-12

Finally learning to accept myself

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-06-18

This book was just incredible. I’ve never heard anyone challenge the idea that extroversion is the ideal in society, and I have successfully molded myself into one. But I have started to notice how much happier I am spending most of my time alone, focused on problems I care about. I think this book acknowledges the rather huge advantages that come with acting like an extrovert, but now I better know how to use my own innate strengths as well. Amazing book.

  • Braving the Wilderness

  • The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone
  • By: Brené Brown
  • Narrated by: Brené Brown
  • Length: 4 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 15,390
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 13,596
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 13,499

"True belonging doesn't require us to change who we are. It requires us to be who we are." Social scientist Brené Brown, PhD, LMSW, has sparked a global conversation about the experiences that bring meaning to our lives - experiences of courage, vulnerability, love, belonging, shame, and empathy. In Braving the Wilderness, Brown redefines what it means to truly belong in an age of increased polarization.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Actual Step-By-Step To Authenticity!

  • By Gillian on 09-14-17

More of a personal story than anything else

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
2 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 11-29-17

This was a decently written book, but the research presented is of poor quality, not critically analyzed, and not generally relevant. Her research presented is almost exclusively interview-based and always presented as case studies. For an example of a failure in critical analysis, the author cites the increased proportion of people living in politically homogeneous districts as evidence that we are self-segregating in the areas we move to, omitting the fact that the primary reason for this is redistricting, not relocation.

The personal aspect of the book on loneliness would be more compelling if the author was not giving this advice from the comfort of a committed and functional relationship, family, and career. It’s a bit like having someone who once got a paper cut giving instructions for open-heart surgery. I’m not saying she didn’t deal with loneliness, but she dealt with it using resources many of her listeners don’t have.

  • Superforecasting

  • The Art and Science of Prediction
  • By: Philip Tetlock, Dan Gardner
  • Narrated by: Joel Richards
  • Length: 9 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,883
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,489
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,491

Everyone would benefit from seeing further into the future, whether buying stocks, crafting policy, launching a new product, or simply planning the week's meals. Unfortunately, people tend to be terrible forecasters. As Wharton professor Philip Tetlock showed in a landmark 2005 study, even experts' predictions are only slightly better than chance. However, an important and underreported conclusion of that study was that some experts do have real foresight.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great for Experts

  • By Michael on 02-20-17

Evidence-Based Life

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 09-17-17

I'm an engineer, steeped in probability, mathematics, and statistics, and even still much of this book was illuminating. It essentially gives a guide to evidence-based life, how to correct yourself when you are wrong, the most prominent biases to avoid, and the fundamental limitations of foresight. Excellent read for everyone with an interest in self-improvement, or intellectual curiosity about politics and the science of prediction.

  • The Book of Joy

  • Lasting Happiness in a Changing World
  • By: Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, Douglas Carlton Abrams
  • Narrated by: Douglas Carlton Abrams, full cast
  • Length: 10 hrs and 12 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 7,123
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 6,306
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 6,266

The occasion was a big birthday. And it inspired two close friends to get together in Dharamsala for a talk about something very important to them. The friends were His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. The subject was joy. Both winners of the Nobel Prize, both great spiritual masters and moral leaders of our time, they are also known for being among the most infectiously happy people on the planet.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • A Perspective and Life Changing Book

  • By Dr. Pepper on 10-27-16

Finally, some peace

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-23-17

My whole life I've clung to the idea that I'm special, that I am extraordinary, that what I want to achieve no one else can. This book dispels that notion, and replaces it with something more self-consistent, more valuable, and more capable of granting peace.

  • No Excuses!

  • The Power of Self-Discipline for Success in Your Life
  • By: Brian Tracy
  • Narrated by: Brian Tracy
  • Length: 6 hrs and 56 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 3,582
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,721
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 2,690

Most people think success comes from good luck or enormous talent, but many successful people achieve their accomplishments in a simpler way: through self-discipline. Brian Tracy knows this firsthand. He didn’t graduate from high school, and after working for a few years as a laborer, he realized he had limited skills and a limited future. But through the power of self-discipline, he changed his life.

  • 2 out of 5 stars
  • Don't buy this book if you have his GOALS! book

  • By L. Venable on 12-27-13

Shaky Science and Over-Generalizations

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
1 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-24-16

"Men are simple in their thinking whereas women are complex" - Brian Tracy
The author's blatant omission of scientific support for the majority of what he says in addition to his heavy-handed moralist writing style made for an unpleasant and poorly educating read. I recommend books by those who were inspired by Brian Tracy, which have pre-filtered most of his bullshit.

  • The Compound Effect

  • Jumpstart Your Income, Your Life, Your Success
  • By: Darren Hardy
  • Narrated by: Darren Hardy
  • Length: 5 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 10,335
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,935
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,864

Darren Hardy, publisher and editorial director of Success magazine, presents The Compound Effect, a distillation of the fundamental principles that have guided the most phenomenal achievements in business, relationships, and beyond.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Small actions repeated add up huge

  • By Jeff Currey on 06-19-15

Best of it's Genre

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-17-16

This is the first of the many personal development books I've read that inspired me to actually take action in my life. It is specific and doable enough to actually cause me to make changes in my life. This book was extraordinary.