Thursday, January 10, 2013

Put down that brownie. Now.

BlogHer paid me to read this book and write a review. The words and thoughts are my own, as if you couldn't tell.

You know how I've been so angry lately? Well, I think the Fates have noticed, too, because I ended up getting picked to review this book about willpower and changing your bad habits, The Willpower Instinct.  Which is the second BlogHer self-help type book I've reviewed in a row, so maybe it's not the Fates but instead BlogHer itself that has noticed I've been a ball of rage. 

Usually, I spin through this crazy and finally wear myself out and nothing really changes.  I've had enough of that - and maybe that's why I keep falling into this trap of anger and despair and agita and can't seem to keep myself from it.  So I'm dedicated to making changes, even if they're uncomfortable.

I have to say, I really like this book. I'm not much for self-help-y stuff because a lot of it is very poorly written and eye-roll inducing.  This book? Snarky and funny and smart.  The writer, Kelly McGonigal, [not to be confused with Professor McGonagall of Harry Potter fame] has a PhD and teaches psychology at Stanford and she's funny as hell.  I think it helps that she's a teacher.  Each chapter is focused and has great anecdotes that make you realize you're not as weak as you thought you were - it's biology/genetics/conditioning that's aiding in fucking you up.

You're supposed to read this book a chapter a week for 10 weeks so you can implement the changes she gives in each chapter. I read it all in one go to review it, but I'm going back through to work on my weekly change. My focus is being healthier.  You can have broad or narrow focuses; you can use this book as many times for as many issues as you'd like to tackle.  So this time, mine is kind of broad [like my ass], because I'm impatient and kind of overwhelmed and if I need to go back and tackle specific areas [eating healthier, exercising more often, hating people less], I'm o.k. with that, because I am A PROCESS, BITCHES.

We're talking about our challenges at BlogHer.  What area would you focus on to gain willpower?  Checking your email/texts/Twitter feeds? Your health?  Drinking or shopping?  NOT CALLING ME? Gah. 


  1. Health. And exercise. And drinking. And money management. Not in that order.

    I'm glad you liked the book; I might try it since yours is the second positive review I've read.

  2. fuck. i hate self-help books for the same reason you do: smary, smug, and written apparently by 14 year old girls who have read too many hallmark cards. phtooey.
    but if a cynic like the Wond. Der. Ful. Sun. EE. Verse likes this book then maybe Ima have to read it.
    although I in NO WAY concede to having any flaws, problems, or compulsive perhaps unhealthy behaviors.

    (You put a comma in there so now I must love you for life.)

    I'm sorry I've been absent. And I'm sorry about all the rage.

    I'd offer to bake you some brownies, but.
    Well, you know.

    Love you, angry lady.
    Let's talk soon.

  4. I don't know, the brownies they serve at the glass shop here in WA work pretty well for rage - I've heard.

  5. Oooh - I'm usually not interested in those kind of books but you had me at really funny, I'll have to look into it!

  6. That sounds interesting! I've been reading a lot about willpower lately, and the idea that it's not limitless (ie you go to the gym? then you're gonna have a cookie because you used up willpower by exercising). Hmm

  7. blogher pays you to write reviews that include the word "fuck" - that's pretty sweet.

    i have no willpower. i'm just starving myself this week and next until i fit into my clothes again.

    happy new year. i miss you.

  8. I want you make me my "I AM A PROCESS, BITCHES" tee. Please? And the book sound stood, too.

  9. Sorry, I got distracted by my brownies. "I am a process, bitches!"

  10. Me too. I am a piece of work, in process, bitches! This book sounds like just the ticket for me.

  11. I saw Karen talking about the book and had the exact same thought - I hate self-help books, but this one actually looks good. My areas that need improvement are eating crap, exercise and money management. My husband had the stupid idea that we would do Weight Watchers together. The program is great, but all i can think of is stirring heavy cream into all his food because you KNOW the bastard is going to lose weight way faster than me and then I'll have to kill him. So the sabotage is a kindness, really. Do I sound angry? Can I borrow that book?

  12. Yup, I've been angry a lot too lately, and also "spin through the crazy" - this book is probably just what I need.


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