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Summary

Psychologist and best-selling author Benjamin Hardy, PhD, debunks the pervasive myths about personality that prevent us from learning - and provides bold strategies for personal transformation.

In Personality Isn’t Permanent, Dr. Benjamin Hardy draws on psychological research to demolish the popular misconception that personality - a person’s consistent attitudes and behaviors - is innate and unchanging. Hardy liberates us from the limiting belief that our “true selves” are to be discovered and shows how we can intentionally create our desired selves and achieve amazing goals instead. He offers practical, science-based advice to for personal-reinvention, including: 

  • Why personality tests such as Myers-Briggs and Enneagram are not only psychologically destructive, but are no more scientific than horoscopes    
  • Why you should never be the “former” anything - because defining yourself by your past successes is just as damaging to growth as being haunted by past failures    
  • How to design your current identity based on your desired future self and make decisions here and now through your new identity    
  • How to reframe traumatic and painful experiences into a fresh narrative supporting your future success    
  • How to become confident enough to define your own life’s purpose    
  • How to create a network of “empathetic witnesses” who actively encourage you through the highs and lows of extreme growth    
  • How to enhance your subconscious to overcome addictions and limiting patterns    
  • How redesign your environment to pull you toward your future, rather than keep you stuck in the past    
  • How to tap into what psychologists call “pull motivation” by narrowing your focus on a single, definable, and compelling outcome   

The audiobook includes true stories of intentional self-transformation - such as Vanessa O’Brien, who quit her corporate job and set the Guinness World Record for a woman climbing the highest peak on every continent in the fastest time; Andre Norman, who became a Harvard fellow after serving a 14-year prison sentence; Ken Arlen, who instantly quit smoking by changing his identity narrative; and Hardy himself, who transcended his childhood in a broken home, surrounded by issues of addiction and mental illness, to earn his PhD and build a happy family. 

Filled with strategies for reframing your past and designing your future, Personality Isn’t Permanent is a guide to breaking free from the past and becoming the person you want to be. 

©2020 Benjamin Hardy (P)2020 Penguin Audio

Critic reviews

"This is a generous, empowering and purposeful book. If you're ready, it will help you unlock a future that you may have been brainwashed into believing wasn't possible. Worth sharing a copy with someone you care about." (Seth Godin, author of This Is Marketing)

"Personality Isn't Permanent is possibly the best self-help book I've ever read, and a book that will redefine the genre. After this book, it's no longer good enough to talk about untested theory - Hardy backs everything up with both amazing stories and cutting edge, tested science, while still making it actionable to anyone. Best part: this is the book that destroys all the useless personality test peddlers that infect the world." (Tucker Max, author of I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell)

"In Personality Isn’t Permanent, Hardy crushes an outdated paradigm and gives you the process to create a bigger, bolder future." (J. J. Virgin, author of The Virgin Diet)

What listeners say about Personality Isn't Permanent

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Blueprints for your mind/road map to your success.

A hands on approach to changing your life and creating your future. A simple yet elegant process explained to yield results and resolve past traumas.
For many years I struggled living a life based on reactiing to environments, people and situations.
Without creating your space, selecting the people around you and filtering what gets in your life there's very little chance of designing your own future.
Dr Hardy guides you through this process. Helping you understand the pitfalls and common mistakes that are holding us back.
I'm very excited and full of hope for my future self.
Highly recommended!

3 people found this helpful

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Not much new here

I like the message he puts out in this book, basically one of having a limitless growth mindset. And that what you do will have a big impact in shaping your future self and personality. I never really thought about it like that before, thats the main value I got from this book though. I read his previous book which he done the narration for and altough I liked the content of it, his effeminate voice really grated on me.The narrator for this book was far better.

The guys personality sounds a bit progressive for my liking which I tried to not let me put me off from some good content, but admittedly failed. He talked of there being too many white males in leadership roles in the 60s, 70s and 80s. About how racist things were then, about how he huddled around with 5 men and started crying so they could get things off their chest. And was a bit nauseagtinly self congratulatory at times, referring to how courageous he was in some situations.

Also a very weird story about the reasoning of an attemped murderer to go on a murder spree in a jail was because he gave up his goal of doing music and instead forged a new goal to be the king in the jail. Nothing mentioned of how said guy could just be evil or a physcopath. There is some value to be had here, and again I do like the main message, but a lot of it is repeating old ideas in a new way, he quotes a lot of other authors in this book. I would also have liked to hear how much he believes personality comes from inherited factors and how much is shaped in the early years of birth.

2 people found this helpful

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Another gem by Dr Benjamin Hardy

loved it. couldn't put it down. I'll be listening again and again to absorb these lessons. Great stories to illustrate.

2 people found this helpful

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  • SF
  • 15-05-21

The best

I listen to books every day whilst I am walking. So have listened to a lot of self help books. For me, this is the best I’ve ever listened to. Simple and explains why you think the way you do. Great book.

1 person found this helpful

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Listen, listen and Listen again

Literally my favourite audible books so far this year. Thought provoking whist settling at the same time.

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Amazing, buy this book, do the work.

I have a few other books by Ben, I e done his morning routine journalling program so I was expecting great things. But wow, Ben has smashed it out of the park! Awesome!

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Brilliant! A very practical book.

I have just finished this book so no doubt I'll need to up date my review after further reflection but for now I would highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to live a different life, a better, more meaningful and impactful one.

This book is full of stories and practical tips and exercises. It's well constructed so you can dip back into sections with ease and I personally found it enjoyable to listen to.

Highly recommended.

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Repetitive opinions

Boring and repetitive. Expected a book on personality, apparently its a self-help book telling you to make goals and achieve them. It starts with personality but quickly fades.
One myth highlighted is that personality isnt based on past experience, yet there is a whole chapter on overcoming trauma because that changes your personality.
Want to write a book on personality backed by resesech? Do that. Want to write an opinion based self-help book on how to be successful? Do that. This book feels muddled.

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For people looking to move ahead

It is a short, brilliantly read story of how you can move ahead from your past and chose to become your best version.
The author quotes many well known books and has managed to bring it all together.
I think this book will resonate with anyone trying to move ahead in life after setback or even a difficult childhood.

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  • LJ
  • 22-01-22

Good

Interesting book, I recommend. There were one or two points I perhaps didn't agree with but it's an interesting book and I will take some of its suggestions forward.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 29-07-20

Wow! One of my top choices in the self help category

I was a little apprehensive of the value of this book. I’ve been brought up with the sayings “that’s just your personality” and “you can’t get blood from a stone”... this one is my mom’s favorite since she truly believes that there are just certain traits that cannot be changed in people. Reading this book changed what I was brought up to believe. I have a new outlook on my life that is a real upgrade from what I thought I could achieve. It’s not magic, you have to want it enough to put forth the effort but the wisdom and tools I received from the chapters in this book are priceless and memorable. It wasn’t just a listen and toss aside. I listened twice and purchased the hard copy as well. I highlighted, dog eared and took notes so I could remember and remind myself. I want more out of life, I want more from myself and this book is helping me to see my big picture. Just fantastic!!! Thank you!

33 people found this helpful

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  • Shakti
  • 28-07-20

Research Based Content , Not another Self-Help

This is not just another self help audible book but a well researched content that I will constantly refer back to groom myself . "Personality Isn't Permanent" will remain permanent in my list books for life and a recommendation to all my friends .

18 people found this helpful

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  • Marcel R.
  • 27-06-20

Well-written and constructive

Finished listening and promptly ordered three hard copies. One for me to study further, two for friends. I recommend this for anyone who wants to make a change.

13 people found this helpful

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  • Dori Davenport
  • 01-08-20

Be Your Best Future Self

What you focus on expands. Very inspiring book. Wish this was taught in Kindergarten. Glad to have it now. Thank you!

12 people found this helpful

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  • Robyn
  • 29-03-21

It sounds like he has no trauma training

By telling people that they can just change the way identify themselves can change their response to trauma is victim blaming and shows lack of understanding of how trauma effects people and victim blames people with PTSD. He only provides anecdotal evidence of a couple people who fit his ideas and very minimal actual studies.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Chris Toone
  • 19-07-20

Pretty great!

I really liked it! Too early to tell, but this could be one of those books that changes me forever. He has a way of making you think about yourself, your past and your future, in a way that is freeing and empowering. I would recommend this book to anyone.

10 people found this helpful

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  • laedi
  • 05-04-21

I had to stop

I have no idea if this book ended in a helpful way or not. I had to stop listening when he shot into a 2 chapter tirade about "kids these days" after just lecturing us about how personality tests can't be accurate because we don't acknowledge context and individuality. The irony and the hypocrisy of shoving an entire generations into a box while ignoring context and individuality is just more than I can take. Honestly, his "expert advice" is sounding an awful lot like my insane aunt's Facebook memes.

Don't even get me started on the blatant disregard for trauma and abuse survivors.

I find it hard to believe all of these 5 star reviews are real.

9 people found this helpful

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  • Ashley
  • 28-06-20

winner!

I'm a huge self-development junkie but this one still hit home & helped me out.

8 people found this helpful

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  • Ian Careaga
  • 25-06-20

“The past happens for us, not to us”

This book is both simple and powerful. It’s audience is everyone. I’ve listened to it, now I will read it slowly to focus on answering the questions posed. The past is a teacher and the future is for us to build. Best book in this category ever!

8 people found this helpful

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  • Songbird
  • 30-07-20

A Powerful Blueprint for Evoking Who You Want to Become

I started out with the print copy of this book. But quickly realized I also needed the audio version as well—so I could listen while doing chores or driving—and really soak it in. This is a book I can see myself re-reading many times. And I know, each time I re-read it, I’ll be a different Future version of myself.

I will, therefore, absorb even more each time. Benjamin Hardy’s book is PACKED Full of insightful and valuable information which can provoke personal growth—if we allow it to do so and do the inner work to bring it about. I highly recommend reading (& re-reading) this book.
~Paula

7 people found this helpful