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59 Seconds: Think a little, change a lot [Paperback]

Richard Wiseman
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (211 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
Price: 5.51 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

2 April 2010

Most people would like to be more creative, more persuasive and more attractive. For years, gurus and ‘life coaches’ have urged people to improve their lives by changing the way they think and behave, but scientific research has revealed that many of their techniques, from group brainstorming to visualization, are ineffective.

Fortunately, psychologist Richard Wiseman is on hand to provide fast-acting, myth-busting scientific answers to a huge range of everyday problems. From job-hunting to relationships, and from parenting to self-esteem, personal and professional success may be less than a minute away . . .

* Find out why putting a pencil between your teeth instantly makes you feel happier

* Discover why even thinking about going to the gym can help you keep in shape

* Learn how putting just one thing in your wallet will improve the chance of it being returned if lost


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59 Seconds: Think a little, change a lot + Rip It Up: The radically new approach to changing your life + Quirkology: The Curious Science Of Everyday Lives
Price For All Three: 17.35

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Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Pan (2 April 2010)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 0330511602
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330511605
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (211 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,623 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Richard Wiseman is Britain's only professor for the Public Understanding of Psychology and is the author of the bestselling Quirkology and 59 Seconds. He is the psychologist most frequently quoted by the British media.

Product Description

Review

'At last, a self-help guide that is based on proper research. Perfect for busy, curious, smart people' --Simon Singh, author of Fermat's Last Theorem

'A triumph of scientifically proven advice over misleading myths of self-help. Challenging, uplifting and long overdue' --Derren Brown

`This is a self-help book, but with a difference: almost everything in it is underpinned by peer-reviewed and often fascinating research. It could actually help you be a little happier, perform better at interviews, procrastinate less, improve your relationships, reduce your stress levels and be a better parent' --New Scientist

`A fascinating read.' --Star Magazine

`Contains dozens of fascinating and useful nuggets, and they all have science on their side.' --The Independent

'Finally, a self-help book that does away with the soul-searching. No wonder the, that Richard Wiseman's collection of scientifically supported quick fixes promising long-term change has soared up the Amazon charts... This book addresses what you're thinking right now. Cognitive-behavourial ideas can repidly change the way you think.' --Sunday Times Style

'Short and sweet: a self help book that really works. It's an engrossing read and a whole lot cheaper than therapy.' --Waitrose Weekend

'Wiseman is a brilliant name for a psychologist, and this book proves he is not misnamed. All the self help tips here are backed by scientific studies, and take less than a minute to implement... contains dozens of fascinating nuggets. Is the thought of Christmas stressing you out? Then go online and spend a minute watching a video of a cute animal...' -- Independent on Sunday Paperbacks of the Year

About the Author

Richard Wiseman is Britain’s only professor for the Public Understanding of Psychology and is the author of the bestselling Quirkology. He is the psychologist most frequently quoted by the British media.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
855 of 865 people found the following review helpful
By Julia Flyte TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
This is an easy and enjoyable book to read - the kind that you can dip in and out of, picking up interesting tips along the way. For each topic, Wiseman discusses a number of research experiments (both his own and ones done by others) and then gives a number of concrete suggestions on how you can quickly implement these findings - although 59 seconds is often a stretch. And why the title of this review? Because one of the things I learned from reading this book was the fact that if you've just had a caffeinated drink, you are far more likely to be swayed by someone else's opinion!

The book is based on the premise that quick techniques can sometimes be surprisingly effective at helping us to change and explains (based on research studies) which ones work and which don't. Some examples that I found interesting were:
- a simple five day writing exercise that can lift your mood for several weeks (essentially a more structured gratitude diary)
- how spending money on experiences is a far more effective way to make yourself happy than spending it on things
- how punching a pillow to relieve anger actually increases your anger, while sitting quietly and thinking about how you benefited (or at least learned) from the experience has the opposite effect
- conversational techniques that can build instant rapport on a first date (the trick is to use topics that create intimacy)
- exercises to stimulate the unconscious mind that lead to better decision making
- simple tests to assess your child's emotional intelligence.

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230 of 242 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Research And Destroy 22 July 2009
By Charles Vasey TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Richard Wiseman has journeyed into the badlands of self-help books with a train of porters carrying academic research on what actually does work when it comes to fulfilling all those rather grandiose goals(losing weight, finding (or indeed fighting as I first typed) the perfect mate, or becoming hugely rich and impossibly attractive). One effect of this is that he packs a lot more advice into the book because the researchers finish off rather quickly some of the wackier (but sadly ineffective) theories that are often used to pad out self-help manuals.

The book therefore has at least two uses. Firstly, it is amusing to see what does work and why it might work (one needs to be careful in assuming the rationales have the same degree of scientific rigour). Secondly, there is some very good advice in here if you want to deal with various problems. My favourites are smiling in front of the mirror with a pencil between your teeth (increases well-being) and the starting a difficult task so you get sucked into finishing it (defeats procrastination). Something that entertains and informs, I recommend it.
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73 of 77 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Summary of what is said in the book 25 Oct 2011
By Mobi
Format:Paperback
If you don't want to buy this book, you can read this summary to get an idea of what is preached in the book.

When people can afford the necessities in life, an increase in income does not result in a significantly happier life. Part of the reasons is that we all get used to what we have very quickly.

Talking about traumatic experience does not help but writing does! This is because people tend to be more systematic solution based during writing.

You don't know what you've got till it's gone! It means you can re-create happiness by going out of the environment and entering it so that the joy of getting something first time re-appears.

Experiential purchase provides greater happiness.

If you want real retail therapy, help yourself by helping others.

In interview, likeability is more important than qualification and work experience.

Bystander effect - The more people who are around when a person is apparently in need of assistance, the lower the likelihood that any one person will actually help!

If you want maximum return for your investment (donation, act of favor etc.), ask for return favor quickly else recipient will forget it.

If you have a photo of a baby in your wallet, you are more likely to get it back if lost.

To achieve your aims and ambitions, there are four key techniques that will help you succeed: having the right kind of plan, telling your friends and family, focusing on the benefits, and rewarding yourself each step of the way.

Looking at greenery, plants etc. inspires creativity.

There is a strong link between anxiety and creativity.
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56 of 60 people found the following review helpful
By Mr. T. White TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Most would agree that Quirkology: The Curious Science Of Everyday Lives was a brilliant book. So, given its strength, I bought 'Did You Spot The Gorilla' and was very disappointed by what felt like a rushed out book(let! of barely a 100 pages), and a poor distant cousin of Quirkology. Thus it was with some degree of hesitation, that I recently bought :59 Seconds...

And was I happy with it? Very much so. Professor Wiseman has definitely returned with gusto! 59:seconds is a book which proves that the man who wrote Quirkology had plenty more tricks up his sleeve. Although some have unjustly criticised his straying off course at times - insofar as when he has an interesting social experiment's results to hand, he cannot help himself, and slips same into the text - even when the accompanying pages may have less relevance to the results he's just disclosed. But I still say: interesting reading is interesting reading! And so what if the professor has seasoned his text with some liberal snippets of curiously entertaining information!? The book is all the better - not worse - for it.

In this most interesting & well written book, he seeks to find out if it's possible to change your life (from decision making and parenting to creativity, stress and relationships etc.) in the minimal of time? And, some 340 pages later, you'll be in no doubt that it is. It's clear that Professor Wiseman took no shortcuts in writing this book, which has some 27 pages of extensive reference notes; and is to be congratulated for producing arguably one of the best books on 'self help' ever written. On that note,
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical
Very practical and short, yet profound book. Interesting way of combining scientific research with the most basic pieces of advice.
Published 9 days ago by Mindaugas Jocius
4.0 out of 5 stars Good sense
A Good book that you can dip in and out of, it made a lot of sense and is worth a look
Published 19 days ago by von
5.0 out of 5 stars The antidote to self-help books
An excellent book - Richard Wiseman takes on the topics normally covered in self-help books but this time with added science. Read more
Published 23 days ago by J. O'leary
2.0 out of 5 stars Too dogmatic for my taste
Sets out to confound current opinion which is fine, but research is too narrow and the suggestions for improvement aren't convincing. Read more
Published 25 days ago by ds
5.0 out of 5 stars good book
very interesting
I liked reading this book it is easy to understand

I would definitely recommend this book it has lots of interesting information
Published 28 days ago by Greg
5.0 out of 5 stars Getting the facts behind the hype.
Dipped into this book when staying in grandson's room and decided I wanted my own copy.

Richard Wiseman looks at the background research which informs various life... Read more
Published 29 days ago by katmogget
1.0 out of 5 stars Can I not give it zero??
This book is so bad - I have never ever bought a book that I've wanted to rip up before - not until this one anyway! A first! DO NOT BUY!
Published 1 month ago by Ms. Tracy Shave
5.0 out of 5 stars Really a very good book
I have been reading this book several times now and everytime, it gives me some encouragement and idear to help with the way I look at and deal with people. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Heatwave
5.0 out of 5 stars Can be life-changing! And it was!
I was a little skeptical at first, so downloaded a sample, I found that thought provoking so bought it. And now I have had a go at following some of the suggestions. Read more
Published 2 months ago by S. W. Price
3.0 out of 5 stars It makes sense
When reading this book a lot of it made sense to me. I probably would have given another star but I think it was a mistake to read this on my kindle - hard copy would have been... Read more
Published 3 months ago by CC
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