Scientific Secrets for Self-Control : The Great Courses: Better Living

  • by The Great Courses
  • Narrated by Professor C. Nathan DeWall
  • Series: The Great Courses: Better Living
  • 3 hrs and 1 mins
  • Lecture

Publisher's Summary

Join an expert in self-control research for six engaging and inspirational lessons that shatter the myths about willpower and replace them with verifiable science that can make the seemingly unattainable finally possible. Packed with eye-opening studies, experiments, and exercises to strengthen your self-control when dealing with money, fitness, personal relationships, and more, this course will have you wondering why you ever doubted yourself.
Whether you're looking for new ways to resist temptation, make a strong first impression, or better control your emotions, this is your guide to understanding—and mastering—what is a frequently misunderstood subject. In clear language, your award-winning professor introduces you to the general theories behind self-control: what it is, how it works, and how you can take steps to improve it.
Among the topics you'll investigate:

How researchers discovered that delayed gratification can lead to better individual well-being in everything from higher self-worth to less sensitivity to rejection
One of the most influential theories about how self-control works - the limited resource model, which argues that self-control relies on limited energy that becomes depleted after use
How scientists discovered the link between the prefrontal cortex and aggression, and how people at risk for violent anger show abnormalities in that region of the brain.

Alongside groundbreaking scientific findings and research, you'll get personal exercises, activities, and thought experiments you can use to practice strengthening your self-control skills to meet whatever specific goals you want to achieve.
Disclaimer: Please note that this recording may include references to supplemental texts or print references that are not essential to the program and not supplied with your purchase.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Don't skimp on this one

This one starts out alright but there are a LOT of things that one can find wrong with the experiments spoken about later on. This is only 3hrs but it's worth even less, about 45min. Instead, skip this truncated summation of psychological experiments and suggestions to do illogical things for training purposes and go straight to "The Willpower Instinct" which contains descriptions of all the best psychological studies AND realistic ways of both understanding and improving upon your willpower.
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- DaemonZeiro

Sometimes the secret is that the chest is empty...

Would you try another book from The Great Courses and/or Professor C. Nathan DeWall?

No. The content was very loose but I have other titles of "The Great Courses" which I enjoyed. For a more detailed review, please see below.

Has Scientific Secrets for Self-Control turned you off from other books in this genre?

No. Other books deserve consideration based on their content, not the lack of substance from this series.

What three words best describe Professor C. Nathan DeWall’s voice?

Average, Acceptable, Level

Was Scientific Secrets for Self-Control worth the listening time?

No. I didn't finish this audio book. I decided to stop committing time to this book on my commute toward the end of Chapter 4, finally losing the last reserves of self control required to listen to what amounted to pretty much nothing. Most of the information is common sense. There are a few relevant take away's which, while interesting, aren't backed up with any significant findings. Or they exist amid a sea of repetitive, irrelevant "facts". The narrator often states phrases such as, "the research supports", or "in a recent study". I do not require countless references or plugs to specific researchers or institutions, but with only 2 direct references to the "studies", I felt the information wasn't credible.

The narrator doesn't even go as far as to beg the question. He makes a statement such as, "Do monkeys show signs of self control?" Follows with a few examples, all of which are preceded by, "A research" or "A study". Then finishes with, "yes, they do show self control". The true issue here is that it doesn't just happen once. He then moves on to another mammal and tells the exact same story. This methodical approach happens often throughout, and it doesn't take long before you realize you haven't actually learned anything.

Any additional comments?

There simply isn't much here. It happens. I was skeptical of the newest wave of courses due to their low times, and after reading a few similar reviews, may be less eager to purchase the next one. However, I have had very good luck with some of the longer volumes. They seemed to have more attention to detail and spent time addressing specific concepts rather than repeating broad generalizations.

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- Jake

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-08-2013
  • Publisher: The Great Courses