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Extended Audio Sample The Procrastination Equation: How to Stop Putting Things Off and Start Getting Stuff Done, by Piers Steel Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (288 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Piers Steel Narrator: Pete Larkin Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Using a mix of psychology, science, self-help, and a decade of groundbreaking research, Dr. Piers Steel, internationally recognized as the foremost authority on procrastination, explains why procrastination is dangerously on the rise and tells us how to overcome the destructive patterns that affect our health and happiness to create more positive lives.

If you think you are not one of the 95 percent of those of us who procrastinate, take Dr. Steel's test in The Procrastination Equation. Or if you think you procrastinate because you're a perfectionist—you're wrong. So, why do we surf the Web instead of finishing overdue projects? Why do we say we'll start that diet—tomorrow? Why do we stay up late watching television instead of going to bed? And how do we overcome these bad habits that we know work against our best intentions? Based on more than a decade of research, and written with humor, humanity, and solid science, The Procrastination Equation explains why we do what we do—or, in this case, don't—offering answers to such questions as:

–Are we biologically hardwired to procrastinate? If so, why?

–How does procrastination cost us?

–What tricks do we play on ourselves when we procrastinate at work, school, and home?

–If visualizing our dreams isn't enough to make them real, then what steps must we take?

Along the way, Dr. Steel dispels the myths and misunderstandings of motivation and procrastination, replacing them with a clear explanation of why we put off until tomorrow what we should be doing today. He then offers specific techniques we can use to tame and prevent the bad habits that adversely affect our health, happiness, and careers, all the while celebrating the very human foibles that make us who we are. The Procrastination Equation is the definitive and accessible guide for anyone who struggles with this age-old dilemma.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Procrastinating just makes unpleasant tasks worse, so why is it so hard for us to resist dithering and delay? The Procrastination Equation is crammed with surprising insights about procrastination and human nature—as well as concrete, helpful solutions for fighting procrastination.”

    Gretchen Rubin, New York Times bestselling author of The Happiness Project

  • “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, New York Times bestselling author of The Upside of Irrationality and Predictably Irrational

  • 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 H. Pink, New York Times bestselling author of Drive and A Whole New Mind

  • The Procrastination Equation is this season’s must-read self-help book. In addition to offering useful strategies to fight a common problem, it’s a fascinating read.” 

    Montreal Gazette

  • “Piers Steel will help you tackle the goals—big and small—that always seemed just a little out of reach.”

    Richard Florida, author of The Great Reset

  • “Pete Larkin’s smart-aleck vibe works well with this assertive guide, which debunks a good many myths about procrastination and pulls no punches regarding what you should do about it.”


  • “A useful, eye-opening book.”


  • “An upbeat, motivational guide to procrastination...Everything you ever wanted to know about procrastination but never got around to reading.”

    Kirkus Reviews

Listener Opinions

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 by Jenny | 2/20/2014

    " Abandoned. Unreadable. Interesting topic, of course. I didn't give it much of a chance, I'll admit. Just got a pile of books to read, didn't like his writing style, life's too short, onward. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Jonathan Widell | 2/20/2014

    " The author, Dr Piers Steel, takes good care of the reader right away. You know, it would be so easy to get bogged down in making jokes, just as I was: for instance, I kept telling myself to get that book instead of putting it off any longer etc. etc. Luckily, I did get the book. The author is wise enough to go through the motions and indulge in those self-deprecating jokes, just to get them out of the way. But then we are down to business. If you are too lazy to take the quiz in the first chapter of the book, as I was, you can complete another, more elaborate test on the author's website and get your scores and procrastination profile right away. When you continue reading, the author analyzes the great personal and social costs that are due to procrastination. One immediately realizes that the problem is real and the author knows what he is talking about. He backs his analysis with hard scientific evidence based on research that he and others have conducted over the years. Don't let the author's lighthearted way of talking to his readers fool you, he means business. Steel is not necessarily telling us anything new. Oh yeah, it is all there: setting realistic and measurable goals, rewarding yourself when you reach your goals, some tricks to make your work enjoyable and so on. The difference with other self-help books is that Steel backs up his advice with hard scientific research, which saves you the trouble of spending too much time trying to find out what really works in your life. Besides, the scientific data makes you realize you are not alone with your problem, which should be reassuring. There is another thing that sets Steel's book apart from other self-help books. He is categorically against one-sided "positive thinking". You should be a little pessimistic, Steel says. If you do not factor some healthy pessimism into your plans, you will end up wasting your time daydreaming instead of doing anything to make those dreams come true. Steel's entire book is built on that "reality principle": he explains how dangerous it is to keep procrastinating but, on the other hand, he explains that there is something you can do about it. Indeed, the dangers relating to procrastination are very real: they include ballooning credit card debt because you don't want to pay things on time, sagging health because you keep putting off medical checkups and exams, lousy retirement planning because you do not start saving for your retirement in time, you name it. Luckily, the steps you can take to get out of that morass of misery are just as real and tangible as the problems themselves. As I mentioned, the reader's attention is drawn to the humorous manner in which Steel conveys his message. The reader may even begin to wonder whether he should resist Steel's charm offensive or not. While the reader is pondering on such minutiae, Steel does something much more surreptitious and clever. As he explains at the very end of the book, his research is a combination of a number of scientific disciplines. Interestingly, he does not call his approach "interdisciplinary," which must be a term that has fallen out of favour in the academia. Instead, Steel talks of the "integration" of different fields. Steel pulls off quite a feat in providing the reader with the necessary information while keeping the reader amused. Still, the book is eminently practical. Steel summarizes his insights in a "step to step guide to getting stuff done" at the back. The impact this book had on me was tremendous. At least now I know that not all self-help books are dumb. There really is hope. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Elaine | 2/14/2014

    " Found the first couple of chapters hard going. When I got to the financial cost of procrastination this really hit home to me how damaging delaying tasks can be. Lots of different suggested actions to beat procrastination. I'll be giving some of these techniques a go. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Bernie May | 2/13/2014

    " Why we procrastinate, how we procrastinate, and actionable advice on how to stop procrastinating. Very insightful, with applications to leadership. "

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