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Popular

The Power of Likability in a Status-Obsessed World
Narrated by: Mitch Prinstein
Length: 6 hrs and 23 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (285 ratings)

Regular price: $24.50

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Publisher's Summary

A leading psychologist examines how our popularity affects our success, our relationships, and our happiness - and why we don't always want to be the most popular.

No matter how old you are, there's a good chance that the word popular immediately transports you back to your teenage years. Most of us can easily recall the adolescent social cliques, the high school pecking order, and which of our peers stood out as the most or the least popular teens we knew. Even as adults we all still remember exactly where we stood in the high school social hierarchy, and the powerful emotions associated with our status persist decades later. This may be for good reason.

Popular examines why popularity plays such a key role in our development and, ultimately, how it still influences our happiness and success today. In many ways - some even beyond our conscious awareness - those old dynamics of our youth continue to play out in every business meeting, every social gathering, our personal relationships, and even how we raise our children. Our popularity even affects our DNA, our health, and our mortality in fascinating ways we never previously realized. More than childhood intelligence, family background, or prior psychological issues, research indicates that it's how popular we were in our early years that predicts how successful and how happy we grow up to be.

But it's not always the conventionally popular people who fare the best, for the simple reason that there is more than one type of popularity - and many of us still long for the wrong one. As children we strive to be likable, which can offer real benefits not only on the playground but throughout our lives. In adolescence, though, a new form of popularity emerges, and we suddenly begin to care about status, power, influence, and notoriety - research indicates that this type of popularity hurts us more than we realize.

Realistically, we can't ignore our natural human social impulses to be included and well regarded by others, but we can learn how to manage those impulses in beneficial and gratifying ways. Popular relies on the latest research in psychology and neuroscience to help us make the wisest choices for ourselves and for our children, so we may all pursue more meaningful, satisfying, and rewarding relationships.

©2017 Mitch Prinstein (P)2017 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"It turns out that there's more to popularity than status. This book didn't just capture my attention; it also helped me understand why I wasn't cool as a kid, why I'm still not today, and why I shouldn't care." (Adam Grant, New York Times best-selling author of Originals and Give and Take)
"Fascinating, well-researched, and accessible, Popular will make you rethink every social interaction you've had since high school, and help you find greater success and happiness. Read this book, and you'll never think about popularity the same way again." (Susan Cain, New York Times best-selling author of Quiet)
"Is popularity overrated? Maybe not - especially if it's the right kind of popularity that we seek. In Mitch Prinstein's fascinating book, you'll learn all about the benefits and pitfalls of being popular and how to make popularity work for you in business and in life." (Daniel H. Pink, New York Times best-selling author of To Sell Is Human and Drive)

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Genius Book that will Redefine View of Popularity

Incredibly well-researched and narrated, Popular provides a redefining narrative and retrospective from childhood likability to the adolescent popularity of power. Prinstein demonstrates how the adolescent popularity centering around power, status, notoriety, and influence hurts more than previously realized by psychological researchers.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Great Parent Read

This book will help parents as they guide children. I wish there was more information about the effect of popularity in the workplace.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Worth it

Very healing and insightful book. I found his summary of the 5 types of people (average, controversial, neglected, rejected, and popular) to be extremely useful. The difference between status and likability and what that means for our futures is also very applicable to every day.

As someone who earlier in life alternated between neglected and rejected, and who now has moved into an average or even popular position, it makes sense that I still mess up, and I can see how I mess up more clearly with this book's help. Also I can see why I often feel a need to seek status (which I've learned isn't healthy). I can also see why I often feel so insecure in my position, like my friends could abandon me. It's all training from early life (which is guessable, but you might not guess that is changeable). Hearing the stories makes this all so obvious to me. It's nothing to fret over, it's natural and possible to overcome. I can feel an internal shift of truly believing this in my deepest core. And that is a relief.

It is a shorter audiobook, which I prefer so I can move onto the next topic. Yet the information isn't the most dense even given the short length, I listened at 2.5x speed most of the way through. I am very glad I listened and very grateful to the author and for the audiobook production team for making this book available in such a digestible format. Listening to this book is likely to change my life tbh.

I got this book on sale, but it worth a whole credit, for me anyway

If you found this review helpful, please click yes :)

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Excellent

This book is super insightful in explaining how/why we gravitate towards some people and not others and how we can be more likable and balanced. The book highlights my own adolescent challenges and successes and provides useful information to help me guide my children through their childhood.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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powerful. life changing. paradigm shifting

if you don't get along with people, you need to read this and you need to read it now.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Full of good information but…

There’s a lot of good information in this book, and lots of things that make you think. Lots of good evidence-based conclusions about popularity. The thing that I kept waiting for that never happened was the concrete examples of how to become more likable. Maybe I was just looking for a list that wasn’t there? So much of the evidence seems to draw really negative or depressing conclusions about how your entire existence is based on how popular you were in high school. OK, I buy it, but where are the concrete action steps to move past it and create a better future? I don’t necessarily struggle with this myself. I consider myself a fairly likable person, but the book overall just seemed a little depressing. There were good suggestions on parenting tactics. Thank goodness my kids were the age examples he talks about in the book. But there were no examples of how to course correct if you had maybe done it wrong in the first place. What if someone’s children were older than early elementary age? What should they do? The book kind of seemed to create more questions than give answers… I did enjoy what it had to say, it just felt like a huge chunk of information was missing.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Insight, understanding, and guidance galore.

Opens your eyes to many social behaviors that have been running under the radar. Gives Understanding to social behaviors you have pondered and Guidance in improving your social likability .

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Insightful.

Insightful and builds on what we all kind of know intuitively. Which is what makes it even better, it helps bring us back to our foundation in building stronger and meaningful human connections. If only there's was a sequal.

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Lacks practical information; overloaded with stats

Didn't enjoy this book for several reasons:
- Author's voice and narrating isn't the best, a professional voiceover would be better
- I expected something more from content, for example learning about dos and don'ts on how to become likeable
- Instead, the author goes on and on with various theories, cases, and even made up examples
- I'm nauseous of hearing over and over again "studies suggest that..."

In a nutshell, pretty much everything you get from the book is already in the excerpt from Audible website...

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Insightful and Intriguing

Full of fascinating statistics and studies, this book covers the in’s and outs of social interactions in an engaging way. 10/10, a great read!