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The Procrastination Equation: How to Stop Putting Things Off and Start Getting Stuff Done [Paperback]

Dr Piers Steel
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
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Book Description

14 Dec 2011

In this groundbreaking book, the world’s leading expert on procrastination, Dr Piers Steel, reveals the truth about why procrastinate – and shows us what we can do about it.

Using a powerful mix of psychology, science, self-help, and a decade of his own research, Dr Steel shows us what effect procrastination has on our lives, and offers real hope to sufferers everywhere.

New to this revised edition, Dr Steel shows exactly how to apply the techniques in common problem areas, resulting in a step-by-step procrastination busting guide for work, money matters and losing weight.

 


Frequently Bought Together

The Procrastination Equation: How to Stop Putting Things Off and Start Getting Stuff Done + Procrastination: Why You Do It, What to Do About It + Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-free Play
Price For All Three: £25.37

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Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Pearson Life; 2 edition (14 Dec 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0273767704
  • ISBN-13: 978-0273767701
  • Product Dimensions: 19.4 x 12.8 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 89,231 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

"The book is great" - The Guardian

"The Procrastination Equation is crammed with surprising insights about procrastination and human nature – as well asconcrete, helpful solutions for fighting procrastination." -
Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project 

"The Procrastination Equation will teach you how to bust the excuses that are preventing you from doing your best work and living your best life. So don’t put it off any longer. Read this book. Today." - Daniel Pink, author of Drive and A Whole New Mind

"Procrastination is the saffron spice of human behavior, where even small amounts of this tendency can shatter the best of intentions. In this illuminating book Piers Steel shows us the secrets of procrastination, how it affects us and how we will, one day, be able to prevail." -  Dan Ariely, author of The Upside of Irrationality and Predictably Irrational 

"In his absorbing first book Steel looks closely at the oft-misunderstood habit of procrastination. His engaging guide will appeal to a wide audience of past, present, and future procrastinators and researchers trying to get a handle on the science of putting things off." - Publishers Weekly

From the Back Cover

Are you always late or behind with something?

Is your desk covered with stuff you just haven’t got round to dealing with?

Are there dozens of untackled jobs around your home?

Then you’re not alone. Across the world, millions of us are engaged in a never-ending battle to get stuff done. It’s a battle that frustrates us, makes us unhappy, costs us financially and takes its toll on our health. What’s more, it’s likely to limit our career potential.

So why do intelligent, able people put things off, even when we know we’ll be worse off for doing so? And, more importantly, how do we change?

In this groundbreaking book, the world’s leading expert on procrastination, Dr Piers Steel, reveals the truth about why we don’t do what we don’t do – and shows us what we can do about it.

Using a powerful mix of psychology, science, self-help, and a decade of his own research, Dr Steel shows us what effect procrastination has on our lives, and offers real hope to sufferers everywhere.

New to this revised edition, Dr Steel shows exactly how to apply the techniques in common problem areas, resulting in a step-by-step procrastination busting guide for work, money matters and losing weight.

“Procrastination is the saffron spice of human behaviour, where even small amounts of this tendency can shatter the best of intentions. In this illuminating book Piers Steel shows us the secrets of procrastination, how it affects us and how we will, one day, be able to prevail.”  Dan Ariely, author of New York Times bestseller Predictably Irrational 


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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One word: Awesome. 30 Jan 2012
By Mike
Format:Paperback
I received a gift card for an offline retailer (I'll not say where considering this is Amazon's site, wouldn't be right) for Christmas and this is one of the books I bought. I'm a hideous procrastinator and it always makes me so annoyed that I do it, because I know putting off xyz tasks will be worse than just doing them, yet I still put them off. It's insane but many of us do it. The first half of this book explains what procrastination really is and why we do it (it's not as simple as you think) and the second half contains eminently doable strategies for beating procrastination.
May be it's my scientific/engineering background but simply understanding the how and why from the first half helped me hugely. The strategies are straight forward and Dr Steel even gives strategies for easing your self into beating procrastination as it's hard to do when you put off the strategies to beat it!
Most of us in the developed world procrastinate to a greater or lesser degree. This book has helped me immensely already and I'm still a few pages from the end. I strongly recommend you buy this book. Well worth the price and more, in my opinion.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Like Mike I'm both a procrastinator and from a scientific background (but in my case biosciences).

I agree absolutely with other reviewers that the first six chapters clearly and comprehensively establish why procrastination occurs, and what the [largely negative, and occasionally catastrophic] effects can be. The next 3 chapters focus on each of the four factors (two in Chapter 9!) that between them determine a person's propensity to procrastinate, and then Chapter 10 summarizes how it can play out in practice. Chapter 11 is a summary of the concepts so far and finally in 'Making It All Work', the biggest of the chapters in the book (~50% longer than the next longest) there is a bullet point summary of all the practical tips mentioned in the earlier sections in the book, set out in logical categories.

As others have said, a lot of the tips are mentioned in other self-help books.

Is there any added value in this volume? I would say, emphatically 'Yes!'.

Why? For the following reasons:

1) This book is based on serious research.
Indeed, as Steel (the author) says himself, it is a synthesis of decades of work by different researchers in different disciplines, that has taken him years to compile and collate.
In summary (for the bioscientists), it clearly sets out the evolutionary struggle between the limbic system and the pre-frontal cortex in decision-making. Don't take my word for it - as any good scientist should, Steel has appended a comprehensive list of references for each chapter. When I say comprehensive, I mean it; this section takes over one sixth of the book (index not included). For the record, altogether there are 370 numbered end-notes, many of them containing multiple citations.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very thought-provoking book 19 July 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have read a great many books/articles on time-management/life organization/efficiency programmes. This is the first one I have read which tells me something new, that is - procrastination is hard-wired into our DNA. It is an atavistic quality. I always thought it was a personal failing. Paradoxically, knowing that procrastination is a basic human instinct has made it easier for me to work towards overcoming my delaying impulses. If you want to improve your work/leisure accomplishments I recommend this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By N. KIRK
Format:Paperback
A very insightful book. The author delivers the subject in an easy reading but very informative style. The book outlines subjects that when considered are blindingly obvious, especially the area regarding students. Funnily enough I've been telling my kids this for years, now I can point them towards a learned tome.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars 5 Stars for 1st Half! 1 Star for the 2nd Half! 15 April 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
As a "Master Procrastinator" of many, many years I really had high hopes for this book and for the first day of reading of about 5 chapters, I was really buzzing from it's contents, it's writing and it's hope!
I had no doubt the author knew his stuff and this really going was going to be the first of many, many books that I've (fully) read, that would conqeur my procrastination problems!

On the second day of reading around chapter 6 it felt the book was going down hill, couldn't put my finger on it, but it felt like "Oh no, it's going to go the way of many self help books", of not living up to it's promises! And.... sadly that was the case for me. Once you hit chapter 7 you quickly find it's just a compendium of numerous self help strategies that have gone before. Just put together in one book! After a really interesting and informative and so promising 1st half (where your team are thrashing the opposition), the second half is so disappointing and quickly lets you down (your team has lost it's lead within minutes and before you know it are about to receive it's biggest loss for years!) and with each chapter then on, your just hoping for something new. Yet it's just same old things, you read many times before!

If you are new to fighting your procrastination problems this book would probably be well worth buying and a 5 star read! If your not and looked many places before, just as long as your not expecting this to be "the book", the 1st half is valuable and would be worthwhile to read, the 2nd half full of things you already know!

( I have just a finished a book that though not confined to procrastination, has (at the time of reading) a very good formula for solving it. I'll be trying it over the next few weeks and if it works will list it here!)
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