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Publisher's Summary

Have you ever found yourself struggling with information overload?

Have you ever felt both overworked and underutilised?

Do you ever feel busy but not productive?

If you answered yes to any of these, the way out is to become an essentialist.

In Essentialism, Greg McKeown, CEO of a leadership and strategy agency in Silicon Valley who has run courses at Apple, Google and Facebook, shows you how to achieve what he calls the disciplined pursuit of less. Being an essentialist is about a disciplined way of thinking. It means challenging the core assumptions of "we can have it all" and "I have to do everything" and replacing them with the pursuit of "the right thing in the right way at the right time".

By applying a more selective criteria for what is essential, the pursuit of less allows us to regain control of our own choices so we can channel our time, energy and effort into making the highest possible contribution toward the goals and activities that matter.

Using the experience and insight of working with the leaders of the most innovative companies and organisations in the world, McKeown shows you how to put Essentialism into practice in your own life, so you, too, can achieve something great.

©2015 Greg McKeown (P)2015 Random House AudioBooks

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Average Customer Ratings

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Enlightening yet practical

This book is life-changing.
I have enjoyed all of it. I think everything written on this book is useful. In a world where there is too much going on all around and too much noise in the outside and inside, this book helps one to persue wholly the most important things and only what matters most to get the best out life and lead a meaningful life for oneself and for the whole world.
I'm definitely re-reading it again.

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Less is More

Essentialism is a great concept and well explained and described in this book. Lots of examples and ways to include it in your life.
It is a different mindset and will take a while to implement and incorporate. I read this book with Deep Work, they compliment each other.
Highly recommend.

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absolutely loved it

what a great way to say the new year!

instead of looking to add new things in, it's all about minimising your priorities to the most essential

say no to more things to create space for the important things in your life

just awesome:

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Self-help but smart

Self help books rightly have a poor reputation for lots of salesmanship and little substance. But this is a smart, nuanced and pragmatic book. There are lots of useful insights and practical hints that can be applied widely. The basic thesis itself (less but better) is fairly anodyne, but the focus on trying to apply this in a disciplined way is what makes the book stand out. I also enjoyed hearing the author read the book, to give it the personal touch.

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A must read for Simplicity Seekers

If you desire an extraordinary life, seek simplicity. If you don't know where to start, read (or listen) to this book.

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Very interesting, informative and well narrated

Very interesting, informative and well narrated. Enjoyed the book from beginning to end, highly recommended...

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Absolutely awesome

And very essential indeed. Life changing. Getting me all set up and ready to make changes. Very motivating and actionable. Listening to chapters over and over.

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life changing

great book. easy to follow with a clear message. thoroughly enjoyed working through this. I highly recommend this book.

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Well researched to bring you the best perspectives of history's inspirational figures

Thank you Greg McKeown for your work that is edited to perfection. It's made your message concise and clear; so your views and borrowed views are easily consumed. I've learnt a lot and look forward to reading it again to dissect more learnings to apply to my life. A tip for readers of this review, you may also enjoy Everything That Remains, by The Minimalists.

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Excellent

Very impressed, one the top 3 audio books I've listened too over 10 years, Thanks

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Profile Image for Jordan Georgiev
  • Jordan Georgiev
  • 10-17-16

Not a bad book

The book does have an interesting narrative. The overall idea is simple, achievable and useful.

On the other hand - this book is a hammer and most of the best literature on the subject is all nails. I've heard most of the common ideas with an "essentialist" attached to them.

Also there is a lot of introduction and a lot of "an essentialist does X". The really useful material is pretty humble.

Overall, this book is good for self-development "beginners" since they'll be learning the most. It would be amazing for them to read the original works mentioned, but this is a good starting point.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Sara P.
  • 10-20-16

Awesome book if you can action it

It's important that this isn't a book you read nod your head in agreement too and then simply continue with life ignoring it's wonderful tips.

A great book and something I'll certainly read again.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Halimah
  • 10-13-16

First audio book I've finished since joining :)

Love this book, simple to follow. Case studies were very helpful. Worth the daily habit! I will no doubt listen again and again. First book I have finished and felt was worth the money!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Syphon
  • 10-05-16

Inspiring stuff

Highly recommended to anyone in all walks of life. Going to pick up a physical copy too.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for A Najak
  • A Najak
  • 10-02-16

must read

absolutely essential book to read has changed the way I think and look at life

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Sunlight and Shadows
  • 09-21-16

One of the smartest books Ever!

I always like a book that is read by the author - it gives an even greater insight to the knowledge they are sharing.
There are so many highlights within this book that I could share - however I couldn't do it justice. If you want a guide to working smart where you are given deep insights to the psychology why in a way that isnt preaching - but is real - then this is the book for you.
Im about to listen to it again as there were so many 'nuggets' within the pages.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • They Esli
  • 05-28-16

Good book, just good!

Easy to grasp, makes me want to start practicing the lessons learned immediately.

Nothing new is really taught but what is taught is taught so clearly. Basically identify the main thing and do it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Renie Gray
  • 05-02-16

It doesn't disappoint, 5 stars all round!

Having heard so much about this book I was overjoyed to find that it doesn't disappoint. Stories, experiences and easy takeaway make this book easily one of my top 3 and it's only just May!! It goes deep and wide all at the same time leaving me both thoughtful and motivated to fully live the life of an essentialist.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • S K.
  • 03-24-16

Wow!

Something in here for everyone. If you want a book to make you think and start a thousand ideas then this a great one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • KG
  • 03-12-16

Great reminder of the importance of focus

Well researched, with interesting stories used to illustrate the point. Very easy to digest, spoken clearly at a good pace.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Steve Shannon
  • 12-18-15

Essential for me? YES!

To begin with I thought to myself "oh great, I'm going to listen to this book for hours when essentially all that needed to be said was "first things first" or "focus on what's important" but this book gives so much more.

I work two jobs, have a wonderful wife and 3 beauiful children (the oldest being 3). Life is stressful at the best of times and Ive always felt that I had to be working my ass off every minute of the day to stay on top of everything. I often felt like if I slept i was somehow losing ground and the idea of "getting ahead" sounded almost impossible.

Insightful and enlightening, this book gave me a strong and clear message that I really needed to hear. It will take a while to apply all the lessons in this book to my life but this is one book I will revisit often.

Thank you Greg McKeown

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Christopher Hume-Phillips
  • Christopher Hume-Phillips
  • 11-07-16

A discipline worth mastering.

I'm like an adult with ADD. My mind is easily distracted by things. My attempts at using organizational systems (like GTD) tended to do no more than generate massive to-do lists that I found difficult to prioritize. In my mind, EVERYTHING was important.
Mark has helped me to get in the habit of asking the right questions so that far fewer items end up on my list now. They're often tough questions to answer at times, however the sense of freedom that comes from being more on purpose, more in control, and more willing to say 'No!' is very liberating.
This approach helps me to 'audit' my headspace - keeping an eye on where my energy is being directed.
Like most 'self help' books, there's plenty of examples, but it's up to the reader to stop and consider how the issue is relevant to them. An example with a 'corporate' context can still have just as much relevance in one's personal life - e.g. 'Sunk Cost Bias'.
I highly recommend taking notes and making a true 'study' of this and how the ideas apply to your own life. A pity there isn't some form of 'workbook'.
I've read it twice now, and heard it once in full. I find the concepts so fundamentally important, there's either a printed, digital or audio copy always close at hand to continually reinforce the messages.
Definitely 'essential' reading/listening.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Elizabeth Christo
  • 12-23-15

I TOLD you!

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

yes .. whilst driving but I got lost as it was a little hard for mr me to concentrate on - I would suggest he varies his speed and content to keep us with him

What was one of the most memorable moments of Essentialism?

the concept is the best

How could the performance have been better?

different narrator

Did Essentialism inspire you to do anything?

yes

Any additional comments?

Yes I love the concept but I felt like I was being TOLD to do something. the delivery was a little full on , or could it be the accent of the speaker/writer. He has great points and advice to make but it get a little complex or something , cant quite put my finger on it.'

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Elizabeth A Todd
  • 02-16-18

Wonderful!

This was exactly what I was looking for as I move forward in establishing my life priorities! I just kept wanting to learn more and be inspired! Life-changing 😃‼️

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  • Edward Simberg
  • 02-05-18

What is meaningful in life?

Key book four figuring out what is relevant and meaningful in life. easy to listen to and lots of"aha" moments

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  • Genevieve
  • 02-04-18

Well worth the listen

I nearly didn't finish listening to this book - I felt put off by the first chapter. However it ended up being a life-changing gem of a book, and I highly recommend listening to it.

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  • Jarren Pinchuck
  • 12-17-17

Mind Expanding

So many excellent learnings you'll have to listen a number of times to make sure you didn't miss anything.

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  • Michael
  • 11-11-17

wonderful requrired reading for modern society.

counter intuitive to modern life. practical, insightful and life changing. definitely need to reread multiple times

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for K. Voruganti
  • K. Voruganti
  • 10-19-17

A bit dry but could have been much shorter

it was an interesting book to listen to. It had some good points regarding being an essentialist. unfortunately too much of the book was quoting people and talking about the why of essentialism and this was just laboured and laboured throughout the book. instead it would have been useful to get the main points and advantages done in one chapter then spend more time on the nitty gritty of doing it. a real missed opportunity.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-11-17

Fantastic

Loved it enjoyed every moment of it. I do a lot of driving for work and i was able to take it all in.