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The Willpower Instinct Audiobook

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

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Publisher's Summary

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. For example, listeners will learn:

  • Willpower is a mind-body response, not a virtue. It is a biological function that can be improved through mindfulness, exercise, nutrition, and sleep.
  • Willpower is not an unlimited resource. Too much self-control can actually be bad for your health.
  • Temptation and stress hijack the brain's systems of self-control, but the brain can be trained for greater willpower.
  • Guilt and shame over your setbacks lead to giving in again, but self-forgiveness and self-compassion boost self-control.
  • Giving up control is sometimes the only way to gain self-control.
  • Willpower failures are contagious - you can catch the desire to overspend or overeat from your friends­­ - but you can also catch self-control from the right role models.

In the groundbreaking tradition of Getting Things Done, The Willpower Instinct combines life-changing prescriptive advice and complementary exercises to help listeners with goals ranging from losing weight to more patient parenting, less procrastination, better health, and greater productivity at work.

©2011 Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D. (P)2011 Gildan Media Corp

What the Critics Say

"This book has tremendous value for anyone interested in learning how to achieve their goals more effectively. McGonigal clearly breaks down a large body of relevant scientific research and its applications, and shows that awareness of the limits of willpower is crucial to our ability to exercise true self control." (Jeffrey M. Schwartz, M.D., co-author of You Are Not Your Brain and author of best-selling Brain Lock)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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Performance
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  •  
    MOLITONI NAU 08-03-16
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    "Good read"

    I really like this book (minus a few swear words). I feel it gave a different outlook on will power and ways to control wants, cravings and bad habits. It also has a good outlook on how to push forward, stay motivated and remember the future you!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    AlexM 07-30-16
    AlexM 07-30-16
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    "Must Read for Self Improvement in ANY Area"

    This book is amazing. Everything that McGonigal asserts is backed with heaps of research. I learned about so much more than just willpower. How society manipulates us using research on willpower, how hardwired our brain is to give-in to basic instincts for survival that over time have resulted in overeating, procrastination etc., Knowing why your brain makes you think you need something and how it is really the want not the product that satisfies your brain (temporarily) helps you overcome bad habits.

    The only downside is I have watched the author on youtube and would have loved to hear this in her voice or at least in a female voice. The male narration was distracted and added nothing to the book.

    But the ideas are so valuable, I had to take notes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    brittany hernandez san diego 07-25-16
    brittany hernandez san diego 07-25-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Loved it!"

    An excellent read for anyone looking to make a lifestyle change! Definitely listen through to the end because there are some gems towards the end!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William Mouradian 07-25-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Remarkably well done and plenty in depth"

    Although the narrator was good, HE is not Dr. Mcgonigal and not even female. I would have much preferred hear the author or at least a woman's voice for this enormously popular Stanford educator's treatment of an age old problem. This book will NOT disappoint, however, and that small point should not discourage you......

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mohamed 07-17-16
    Mohamed 07-17-16 Member Since 2017
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    "Great set of tools for Self control, loved!!!"

    Completed the audio book for the first time. Sure enough to go through few more times to grab different techniques and bring to daily routines. Fantastic job, keep up the good work. Planning to buy the physical version for my personal library. Thank you!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Abhishek 07-14-16
    Abhishek 07-14-16
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    "Superb toolkit to understand oneself"

    I loved this book. it relies on a wealth of scientific research and useful conclusions that can help you understand and observe your own desires and inner battles closely as if you are just an onlooker.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Yvette D Skinner Baton Rouge, LA United States 07-12-16
    Yvette D Skinner Baton Rouge, LA United States 07-12-16 Listener Since 2006
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    "useful guide for self improvement"

    I'm going to read this book a second time so that I can let the lessons really sink in. I look forward to the potential for self improvement.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    M. Franzel Ocala, Florida 07-07-16
    M. Franzel Ocala, Florida 07-07-16 Member Since 2017
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    "I quit some bad habits just listening to this book"

    For years now I have struggled with the use of tobacco. With the help of this book I was actually able to break that cycle before I even finish the book. It gives you a new way to think of things that one might call habits. Whether it's food shopping or consumables such as tobacco or alcohol this book teaches you to recognize the signs and to help you build the inner strength to make decision ultimately want to make.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    N. Bird 07-05-16
    N. Bird 07-05-16
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    "OK if you like self-help"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    No. I could have gotten as much actual information from a much shorter piece.


    What could Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D. have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    I don't like the self-help genre with its anecdotes about patients/students, and suggested activities. I had heard that this book was more of a piece of science writing so I was disappointed to find that while it contains references to studies, it is definitely not science writing.


    What aspect of Walter Dixon’s performance would you have changed?

    Along the self-help genre complaint, I felt that he was speaking down to me the way he inflected many sentences. Probably just the writing though. His voice was pleasant.


    Do you think The Willpower Instinct needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No, but I would like to see a re-framing of the book to be a piece of science writing. I like to learn about scientists and how they have discovered things, studied them, and come up with theories.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dee 06-30-16
    Dee 06-30-16
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    "Worth every drop of patience. "

    A bit slow at times, but all the information is a huge eye opener in everyone's life. You'll relate to more than one situation studied.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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