• Better Than Before

  • Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives
  • By: Gretchen Rubin
  • Narrated by: Gretchen Rubin
  • Length: 9 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Release date: 03-17-15
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
  • 4 out of 5 stars 4.2 (17 ratings)

Regular price: $21.31

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Publisher's Summary

Best-selling author Gretchen Rubin (The Happiness Project and Happier at Home) explores habits - the invisible architecture of everyday life - and how they can make us more likely to be happy, healthy, productive, and creative. When we change our habits, we change our lives.
Gretchen Rubin, author of the blockbuster New York Times best sellers The Happiness Project and Happier at Home, has helped millions of readers get happier. Now she tackles the critical question: How can we make good habits and break bad ones? In a book that's crammed with big, provocative ideas, Rubin shows readers how to create the habits that will transform their lives, even if they've failed before. The secret, Rubin explains, is to pinpoint the specific strategies that will work for us.
From finding the right time to begin a new habit to setting up a counterintuitive system of reward to using the pleasure of treats to strengthen our good habits, Rubin identifies the 21 strategies that will allow every reader to find an effective, individual fit. Along the way Rubin uses herself as a guinea pig, tests her theories on family and friends, and answers readers' most pressing questions - oddly, questions that other writers and researchers tend to ignore:

Why do I find it tough to create a habit for something I love to do?
Sometimes I can change a habit overnight, and sometimes I can't change a habit no matter how hard I try. Why?
How quickly can I change a habit? How can I get myself to stick to a new habit?
I want to help someone else make a change. But how?
Why can I make time for everyone else but can't make time for myself?
Whether readers want to get more sleep, make and maintain a weight loss, stop checking their phone, or finish a project, habits make change possible. Habits are the invisible architecture of everyday life.
Reading just a few chapters of Better Than Before will start readers working on their own habits - even before they've finished the book.
©2015 Gretchen Rubin (P)2015 John Murray Press
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Critic Reviews

"Do you have a bad habit you're trying to shake, or a good one you wish you could cultivate? Gretchen Rubin is one of the most charming and erudite authors of her generation. Here, she uses her gifts to help you eat right, sleep well, stop procrastinating and start enjoying all that life has to offer." (Susan Cain, best-selling author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking)
"Filled with insights about our patterns of behavior, Better Than Before addresses one of life's big and timeless questions: How can we transform ourselves? In a way that's thought-provoking, surprising and often funny, Gretchen Rubin provides us with the tools to build a life that truly reflects our goals and values." (Arianna Huffington, founder of The Huffington Post and best-selling author of Thrive)
"Gretchen Rubin combines deep research and observations from her own life to explain how habits emerge and - more important - how they can change. It's indispensable for anyone hoping to overhaul how they (almost unthinkingly) behave." (Charles Duhigg, bestselling author of The Power of Habit)
"Gretchen Rubin is a writer after my own heart - seriously brilliant, very warm, and funny. I think she's amazing." (Anne Lamott)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By Peter on 06-11-15

Useful, but flawed

What did you like best about Better Than Before? What did you like least?

Best parts where the actual useful classifications and concepts.
The main issue I had was the way the concepts were elaborated upon.

Did Better Than Before inspire you to do anything?

Yes. It got me going with a habit or two I've wanted to start for a while, but couldn't bring myself to start due to previous failures.

Any additional comments?

Insightful and smart, but written for a different audience to myself.
The author managed to pick up the intricacies of habit formation, but the way they're explained made me grind my teeth sometimes. I understand the thinking of trying to explain concepts using personal experience and anecdotes, but it gets tiring when it's done constantly and in such a "holier than though" manner. I really wanted to rate this better, since I did learn quite a bit and it definitely made me think, but ultimately it is a book, so spending a fair few hours rolling your eyes and clenching your jaw does gets very tiring.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Amazon Customer on 05-25-16

Excellent book..!!

Where does Better Than Before rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It is the very good book, best part about listening this is book is treat to listen Gretchen for 9 hours.. Good thing happened to be was, I started listening to her podcast much before I bought this book. so I was quite familiar with her voice and listening this book in her own voice was hell lot interesting . Book gave me good insight about knowing self .

What did you like best about this story?

Parts about different kinds of people. I found out that I'm an obliger.

What does Gretchen Rubin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Her voice :-)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By liz on 05-03-15

Rehash of First Book

I enjoyed the first book, however this is more of the same, less objective delivered with a big dollop of smugness. Disappointed.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Alid7600 on 03-02-16


I absolutely loved this book. I had bought it a while ago but hadn't got round to reading it. I wish I'd picked it up sooner. Made me completely rethink how to approach things in the future and I would actually like to read this book again, something I have never done before.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By VP on 12-13-15

Too much fluff; too much!

A long book is a consequence of a long and masterful process of writing, or an attempt to fill up pages and turn a few ideas into sellable format.

Unfortunately, this book is the second.

Save your money and most importantly your time (being a long talk) and choose something else.

She uses the outdated technique of holding on to the main ideas and trying to build up anticipation.

I don't like leaving negative reviews, but I truly want to save the next person in search of truth some of their limited time.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By P M CODY on 10-05-16

One of the most useful books I've read this year!

I'm not the effusive type, so when I write a 5-star review it really does mean I've found the book to be enormously helpful, well-written, and engaging. The "four tendencies" framework makes sense to me and is a really useful filter for understanding why I do things, and, just as importantly, why I don't do things, and why motivational strategies that work for others don't often work well for me. I highly recommend this book! As an audiobook, I also loved the fact that Gretchen narrated it herself. Her voice is expressive, her diction clear, and she is very easy to listen to. I thoroughly enjoyed it and will undoubtedly listen again!

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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