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Loserthink

How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America
Narrated by: Scott Adams
Length: 6 hrs and 58 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (63 ratings)

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Summary

From the creator of Dilbert and author of Win Bigly, a guide to spotting and avoiding loserthink: sneaky mental habits trapping victims in their own bubbles of reality. If you've been on social media lately, or turned on your TV, you may have noticed a lot of dumb ideas floating around. 

"We know when history will repeat and when it won't." 

"We can tell the difference between evidence and coincidences." 

"The simplest explanation is usually true." 

Wrong, wrong, and dangerous! 

If we're not careful, loserthink would have us believe that every Trump supporter is a bigoted racist, addicts should be responsible for fixing the opioid epidemic, and that your relationship fell apart simply because you chewed with your mouth open. 

Even the smartest people can slip into loserthink's seductive grasp. This book will teach you how to spot and avoid it - and will give you scripts to respond when hollow arguments are being brandished against you, whether by well-intentioned friends, strangers on the internet, or political pundits. You'll also learn how to spot the underlying causes of loserthink, like the inability to get ego out of your decisions, thinking with words instead of reasons, failing to imagine alternative explanations, and making too much of coincidences. 

Your bubble of reality doesn't have to be a prison. This book will show you how to break free - and, what's more, to be among the most perceptive and respected thinkers in every conversation. 

"They say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but they never tell you why. So I went ahead and judged it. Looks great!" (Juan Variable) 

"Don’t think of this book as something you ‘read.’ Think of it as ‘survival.’ And you want to survive, don’t you?" (M. Wordthinker) 

"If you love this book, you are probably part of a clandestine global conspiracy to control the world. You’ll probably deny it, but I know what you are thinking." (Reed Mines)

©2019 Scott Adams (P)2019 Penguin Audio

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    3 out of 5 stars

A bit too much about Scott Adams

Like Scott Adams other books they all try to encourage an alternate view (or filter) on life. But as I made my way through I soon found that this book is similar to his others in that he'll remind you repeatedly that he's a trained hypnotist, a successful cartoonist, and now a successful political pundit. Overall it's an enjoyable read but it didn't need the autobiography merged in.

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Not as good as previous books

A lot of Adam Scott's have been inciteful for me. They have given me a new view on the world. This book just felt like a response to his critics.

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Scott Adams is trying to help

Unfortunately for Scott the people who need this book most will never read it. I enjoy Scott and enjoyed this book. It's a manual on how to think and talk in a civilised way. Many international readers were raised in societies that have already evolved to that point but the book is interesting none the less. The book is peppered with numerous reminders of Scott's immense and diverse "talent stack" and qualifications. We hear how Scott has a degree in economics and an MBA almost as repetitively as we hear he is a trained hypnotist and the creator of Dilbert. Scott also takes every opportunity to sell his other books and his start up along the way too. Did I mention he is an expert in persuasion?

He just persuaded me to pay for an infomercial.

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  • jenna
  • 06-12-19

I like Scott Adams but..

Not this book. Parts of this book are ok, but I don’t know if anything is really groundbreaking. I read Some of his other books and enjoyed those, this one was just “eh” I decided not to finish even with only an hour left. Sorry Scott.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Jonas Irwin
  • 08-11-19

Good - although it seemed like the editors accidentally released an early draft vs. the real finished product?

Great topics, great perspective as always.
I enjoyed the book but it could have been better. I was expecting a more organized and polished product from Scott. It didn’t seem structured well or linearly organized in a clean way. More than once I was convinced my phone had inadvertently flipped back to a previous chapter I had already heard but in fact it hadn’t.

Perhaps it’s because I used the audiobook (I prefer reading ) but it came across as meandering, a bit jumbled and highly repetitive. I’m no author but I would love to read an updated draft that feels more like a finished product.

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  • Saminathan Suresh Nathan
  • 10-12-19

Skip to chapter 15. The rest is just satire

as would be expected of the author of Dilbert *rolls eyes*. There's very little here for the rest of the 6.5 billion people who don't live in planet America.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 10-01-20

Great simplified critical thinking book

This book simplifies and distills a lot of sophisticated critical thinking concepts. Excellent for beginners and a great book for people who already understand a lot of the cognitive biases to describe and think about them in a very accessible way so they don't sound like elitest jerks in debates.

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  • Matt
  • 06-11-19

A systems approach to critical thinking

First off, I really enjoy Scott's podcast and other books. Every one of them contain useful concepts with practical applications. I've been looking forward to this, and actually got it both in audiobook format along with the hardcover to support his work. Scott doesn't need my money really, though he has earned it. I bought both because I believe that if I can help make this a best seller, it will improve our national unity by way of improved critical thinking skills on a difficult subject.

I recently finished "The Righteous Mind" by Jonathan Heidt, and it is a book that pairs very well with this. It gives some insight into how the other side of the political spectrum thinks, and understanding that yes, even people we disagree with mostly have good intentions.

This book is all about stepping back from your biases and examining how you are thinking about subjects which are incredibly polarized in today's political climate.

The thing is, that happens because Scott simply talks about President Trump's persuasion skills from an objective standpoint. He says similar things about people on the left as well, but we live in a world where people are so tribal that saying anything remotely positive about someone on the other team is viewed as an unacceptable act.

I should clarify that this isn't really a political book. It just uses some of that subject matter for its examples. It is about systems of thinking which allow the reader to learn how to find and fix bad thinking in themselves, and also to try to lead others to the same.

This book at its core is an attempt to give people the skills to root out the biases in their thinking, take a step back from that, and get out of their bubble. It's a practical, systems approach to breaking through our biases and being a bit more objective.

Anyhow, I hope people give this book an objective read and try to apply what they learn as they read it. It takes a certain self-discipline to do so, but there are real rewards to applying these concepts.

One thing I think we can all agree on, and that this book teaches is that not being afraid to critically examine your own thinking can yield real rewards. It pays to break out of your lane. You may not come out thinking exactly the way Scott does. I don't in fact agree with everything Scott advocates personally. I do however see the practical value in his approach though, and I think you will also if you give this book a read.

Once you finish this, I also highly recommend Win Bigly.

Since this is the audiobook review, I'll simply add that Scott does an excellent job as narrator. He's obviously got a lot of experience with public speaking, and when he hits subjects he is passionate about, you can hear him emphasizing his own arguments to make the point he is aiming at. That sort of nuance can be lost with a separate narrator.

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  • Stacie Sentker
  • 03-01-20

Highly recommend

One of the best aspects is how uncomfortable it made me feel about my own confirmation bias. I believe with honest application of these principles that over time one could develop the mind of a steel trap. I’m off for a 2nd listen

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  • Wayne
  • 08-11-19

Excellent advice on proper thinking!

Scott Adams, the creator of Dilbert, has written a book that everyone should read/listen to. It really is common sense, but common sense is not very common.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Wilton D. Alston
  • 12-12-19

Who Knew Dilbert Had So Much to Teach?

Having long lived his Dilbert comic strip, I guess I shouldn't be surprised that Scott Adams has so much depth. On the downside, as an engineer who values his grasp on logic, it was less than thrilling to hear myself identified as a somewhat frequent practicioner of Loser Think! Hey, live and learn, right?

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  • Liz Jardine
  • 12-12-19

Good Information

I can feel my mind actually expanding listening to Scott's ideas. Though i do not agree with several of his positions vis a vis politics and climate change i must say i appreciate that he is attempting to release me from my mental prison. Since beginning to listen i have begun to recognize these tendencies in myself. I also appreciate that the author is trying to help us not only listen to different points of view but to speak more productively to folks who see things differently. This will be critical going forward in our very polarized political times. thank you for writing it. Sincerely, Liz Jardine

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  • Alex Dale
  • 08-12-19

I believe this book will make me a better person.

Scott Adams book provides a run-through of common mistakes, mostly of misused ego, and methods of correcting. I'm certain that everyone will get at least one insight that will help them lead a more controlled life.

1 person found this helpful