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Summary

Throughout history, there's been one indelible quality that great leaders, makers, artists and fighters have shared. The Zen Buddhists described it as inner peace, the Stoics called it ataraxia and Ryan Holiday calls it stillness: the ability to be steady, focussed and calm in a constantly busy world.

This quality, valued by every major school of thought from Buddha to Seneca, John Stuart Mill to Nietzsche, is urgently necessary today. And, Holiday shows, it is entirely attainable. Just as Winston Churchill used bricklaying as a time to recharge and reflect, or Oprah Winfrey learned deep empathy from her quiet childhood, we can all benefit from stillness to feed into our greater ambitions - whether winning a battle, building a business, or simply finding happiness, peace and self-direction.

Filled with wisdom and examples from historical and contemporary figures, this audiobook shows how to cultivate this quality in your own life. Because stillness is not merely inactivity, but the doorway to the self-mastery, discipline and focus necessary to succeed in this competitive, noisy world.

©2019 Ryan Holiday (P)2019 Hachette Audio UK

What listeners say about Stillness Is the Key

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Abandoned

This book disappointed me. Got to chapter 7 and quit. Chapters are bloated with far too much olde-worlde philosophy, sports analogies or the old Buddhist story with only a few words at the end about the actual matter that he's supposed to be discussing. This was overload for me and not succinct or to the point. 90% of what I listened to wasn’t his own thoughts just a regurgitation or rehash of other works. It's ironic as one of his chapters suggests “limiting inputs to prevent information overload”. Abandoned.

15 people found this helpful

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could not finish

The narration made it too hard to listen to, sadly. I will buy the book instead.

3 people found this helpful

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Great finish to the trilogy

Great book and the best in the series. Although all were very good. Highly recommend for anyone interested in improving their lives.

3 people found this helpful

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Always worth a relisten!

This book is truly a life saver and maker. Holiday is one of my favourite contemporary authors for many good reasons

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Another great book

I really like how the book is structured, the narration is clear and energetic which carries some harder more confronting subjects well. I’d recommend this book to anyone wanting to enjoy life a little more, connect more deeply and create space for much needed clarity in a noisy world.

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A surprising gem of a book

I knew this would be quite a good book as Ryan Holiday isn’t likely to release a bad one but I didn’t realise just how good it would be. I feared it might be a bit vanilla but it felt characterful and unique. It definitely has its own feel and the advice is gives is essential if a little vague at times. I enjoyed the examples of people in history he used and the way it flowed worked as well. Definitely a very good personal development book

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Poor. Avoid.

Stopped reading this after 40 mins. In summary its just the author telling you how to live and uses select examples to boost his own narrative. Have read other books of this genre and at least they provide interesting insights or pose different questions for thought.

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Some Good Anecdotes - A bit of Padding out.

This formula of reminding us of old stories we already know to illustrate a moral seems to be a winning one. Like his mentor Robert Green, Holiday is very good at it. There are positive messages here and I'll certainly play this in the car in the hope the kids might pick up a few lessons.

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A perfect ending to the trilogy.

I'd say this one is my favorite out of the three in the trilogy.
The part on Tiger Woods was great also.
RH never let's me down.

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My new favourite book

Amazing book - life changing in fact
Insightful, interesting and incredibly thought provoking. Ryan writes in such an accessible and engaging way.

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  • Paul
  • 27-10-19

.

Another great Audio Book by a Ryan, I'm grateful that I found his work and now have the tools to tackle life and upgrade my internal operating software to become a better human, Father, Husband, Son, Neighbour, Friend, etc

3 people found this helpful

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  • Emil Smith
  • 16-07-20

Really find stillness in all areas of your life...

I've listened to this book at least 5 times, and it has become a kind of "reference book" when I think of how I want to shape and live my life. It covers all the different areas of your life, and can be applied to both your professional life as well as your personal life.

Ryan brings together the thoughts and writings from many different philosophies, mainly focusing on Stoicism, to really challenge you to look at the way you live your life, in order to find true stillness and joy. He discusses many clever examples from famous people in history, highlighting both things you should do and also things you should avoid, in order to live a thoughtful and successful life.

His narration is beautiful, and I found it much more compelling than some of his other titles.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Jay
  • 06-01-20

Very insightful and Practical.

Very well researched and the recommendations and strategies can be put to use immediately. Thank you for writing this Ryan

1 person found this helpful

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  • sathya raghu
  • 10-05-21

A must read for all

The most thought provoking book I read in the past 2 years. I totally loved it.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 17-02-21

Very good actually

Though it seems like an extended means to say find/make peace and be good always - this book is very very well structured and the journey by use of real life examples per idea is handled well.

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  • J. Cochrane
  • 25-11-20

Concise and Pointed

Overall very happy. Excellent and precise guidance without a lot of fluff.

I’ve been a Daily Stoic email subscriber for some time. And an avid reader of books and blogs in this wider genre. And watched a few Ryan Holiday YouTube videos. Yet this was my first experience delving into a full book. Well worth the listen. My take away affirmation that I’m already practicing much of what is discussed. And provided a few areas where I had some blind spots.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 16-10-20

Nailed it, lean yet powerful.

Short insightful read. Relevant to those interested in the mind, personal development or just becoming a better person, father, partner or CEO.

I enjoyed Ego is the Enemy and The Obstacle is the way, but Stillness is the key is described with even more logic and practicality.

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  • Johanna P
  • 13-08-20

Great material but the author sounds dry and dull

Great for reading. I would recommend it as a book. Maybe next book he should hire someone. I would buy a second audiobook but I'm actually afraid I can't listen to Ryan (take a holiday:D) for hours..

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  • Andrew
  • 13-07-20

Another great book!

More ruminations on life by Holiday. lot's to think about. this book is one of those books that will mature for a long time in my head.

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  • Leon Streete
  • 23-01-20

another solid follow up

great content, well researched, hypothesised and explained. well worth a read for greater spiritual understanding.