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The Paradox of Choice Audiobook

The Paradox of Choice: Why More is Less

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Publisher's Summary

In the spirit of Alvin Tofflers' Future Shock, a social critique of our obsession with choice, and how it contributes to anxiety, dissatisfaction and regret.

Whether were buying a pair of jeans, ordering a cup of coffee, selecting a long-distance carrier, applying to college, choosing a doctor, or setting up a 401(k), everyday decisions - both big and small - have become increasingly complex due to the overwhelming abundance of choice with which we are presented.

We assume that more choice means better options and greater satisfaction. But beware of excessive choice: choice overload can make you question the decisions you make before you even make them, it can set you up for unrealistically high expectations, and it can make you blame yourself for any and all failures. In the long run, this can lead to decision-making paralysis, anxiety, and perpetual stress. And, in a culture that tells us that there is no excuse for falling short of perfection when your options are limitless, too much choice can lead to clinical depression.

In The Paradox of Choice, Barry Schwartz explains at what point choice - the hallmark of individual freedom and self-determination that we so cherish - becomes detrimental to our psychological and emotional well-being. In accessible, engaging, and anecdotal prose, Schwartz shows how the dramatic explosion in choice--from the mundane to the profound challenges of balancing career, family, and individual needs--has paradoxically become a problem instead of a solution. Schwartz also shows how our obsession with choice encourages us to seek that which makes us feel worse.

©2004 Barry Schwartz (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (853 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Di United States 10-22-10
    Di United States 10-22-10 Listener Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    19
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    "Impressive"

    Impressive,
    you will get much form this book!
    Repetitive? No! Good idea need long talk! always.

    7 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matt Sponholz 11-08-17 Member Since 2016
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    "I just... Can't get past that narrator"

    Firstly, this book is well worth your time. Barry Schwartz makes a few very compelling points. That said, this book makes those same points again and again. I feel like it could easily be condensed to a few chapters. Still, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

    The Narrator on the other hand... He is very good at submitting a clear and concise stream of words, but I felt throughout the entire listen like he was deliberately speaking in a sort of condescending tone. He has a way of reading that makes me want to disagree with him even though I totally agree with him. It's as if that school playmate from your childhood, the one who teased you about that school crush, came into adulthood and felt that it was his life's mission to find a mature way to tease; an adult way of teasing. I could have sworn he said "I know you are, but what am I" under his breath throughout this production.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cryssy Doll 09-14-17
    Cryssy Doll 09-14-17
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    3
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    "Enlightening"

    Made me think about my indecisive nature and why I choose what I do

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hans Rigelman 07-07-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Why Choice Is Difficult for Many Today"

    This book introduces the reader to two types of choosers - maximisers and satisfisers. The first type tries to make the best of all possible choices, whereas the second settles for the first available choice that meets the minimum criteria.

    I was pleased to find I am in the second type, since the first type, maximisers are usually under more stress. It was interesting to see how our choices are often framed by clever marketeers, and how we can evaluate and expose their schemes. Don't worry though. You won't go wrong if you choose to read this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    david johnson 03-31-17
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    "Great book"

    I've read a lot of books on this particular topic, and this is one of the best. I highly recommend it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brian J. Hafner Chicago, IL 11-09-16
    Brian J. Hafner Chicago, IL 11-09-16 Member Since 2017
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    "I chose to stop listening"

    Interesting concept taken too far. Extremely repetitive. Unlike others, I found nothing wrong with the narration. The problem is the material. The preface and first chapters were good. After that, I had to keep skipping ahead hoping to find the next concept. Eventually, I just gave up and deleted the book. Yet another new set of choices in today's world: Audio books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ron schreibman 10-17-16 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Scientific proof that " More is Less""
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I have recommended it to all my family and close friends because I think they would relate to the concepts and find some helpful ideas about how to manage and live in overchoice world.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Paradox of Choice?

    ...the realization that we are making our children anxious and frazzled with overchoice


    Have you listened to any of Ken Kliban’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    What did you learn from The Paradox of Choice that you would use in your daily life?

    I think much more about putting myself in a situation where there are too many choices. Also I am trying to construct my environment so that there will be fewer "wrong" choices .


    Any additional comments?

    Great read for perfectionists :)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ibrahim Oman 09-19-16
    Ibrahim Oman 09-19-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Very informative on how choices effect us"

    Very informative book on how we make choices and how these effect us. Information is based on research which are well summarised. The author gives recommendations on how best to deal with ever more increasing choices leaning toward a style of finding what satisfies our needs.
    The book may be best read as paper book easy for reference. However it is well done.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan B Sampson 09-05-16
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    "A good point made excessively."

    This would have been an interesting and insightful magazine article, minus most of the the too numerous to count examples.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L Sheffield 05-05-16
    L Sheffield 05-05-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Decisions Defined"
    What did you love best about The Paradox of Choice?

    I really enjoyed the examples and case studies. The last chapter of the book is pure Gold.


    What about Ken Kliban’s performance did you like?

    Easy voice to listen to.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Your Choices Don't Matter....Why More is Less


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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