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Barking Up the Wrong Tree: The Surprising Science Behind Why Everything You Know About Success Is (Mostly) Wrong

Barking Up the Wrong Tree: The Surprising Science Behind Why Everything You Know About Success Is (Mostly) Wrong

by Eric Barker


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Wall Street Journal Bestseller

Much of the advice we’ve been told about achievement is logical, earnest…and downright wrong. In Barking Up the Wrong Tree, Eric Barker reveals the extraordinary science behind what actually determines success and most importantly, how anyone can achieve it. You’ll learn:

• Why valedictorians rarely become millionaires, and how your biggest weakness might actually be your greatest strength
• Whether nice guys finish last and why the best lessons about cooperation come from gang members, pirates, and serial killers

• Why trying to increase confidence fails and how Buddhist philosophy holds a superior solution
• The secret ingredient to “grit” that Navy SEALs and disaster survivors leverage to keep going
• How to find work-life balance using the strategy of Genghis Khan, the errors of Albert Einstein, and a little lesson from Spider-Man

By looking at what separates the extremely successful from the rest of us, we learn what we can do to be more like them—and find out in some cases why it’s good that we aren’t. Barking Up the Wrong Tree draws on startling statistics and surprising anecdotes to help you understand what works and what doesn’t so you can stop guessing at success and start living the life you want.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062416056
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 05/14/2019
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 103,918
Product dimensions: 5.31(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.72(d)

About the Author

Eric Barker is the creator of the blog Barking Up the Wrong Tree, which presents science-based answers and expert insight on how to be awesome at life. His work has been mentioned in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic Monthly, TIME magazine, The Week, and Business Insider. He is a former Hollywood screenwriter, having worked on projects for Walt Disney Pictures, Twentieth Century Fox, and Revolution Studios. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and holds an MBA from Boston College and a Master of Fine Arts from UCLA.

Table of Contents

Introduction: What Really Produces Success? 1

By Looking at the Science Behind What Separates the Extremely Successful from the Rest of Us, We Learn What We Can Do to Be More Like Them-and Find Out in Some Cases Why It's Good That We Aren't

Chapter 1 Should We Play It Safe and Do What We're Told If We Want to Succeed? 7

Does Playing by the Rules Pay Off? Insight from Valedictorians, People Who Feel No Pain, and Piano Prodigies

Chapter 2 Do Nice Guys Finish Last? 32

What You Can Learn About Trust, Cooperation, and Kindness … from Gang Members, Pirates, and Serial Killers

Chapter 3 Do Quitters Never Win and Winners Never Quit? 62

What Navy SEALs, Video Games, Arranged Marriages, and Batman Can Teach Us About Sticking It Out When Achieving Success Is Hard

Chapter 4 It's Not What You Know, It's Who You Know (Unless It Really Is What You Know) 123

What We Can Learn About the Power of Networks from Hostage Negotiators, Top Comedians, and the Smartest Man Who Ever Lived

Chapter 5 Believe in Yourself … Sometimes 175

What We Can Learn About Walking the Tightrope Between Confidence and Delusion from Chess Masters, Secret Military Units, Kung Fu Con Artists, and People Who Cannot Feel Fear

Chapter 6 Work, Work, Work … or Work-Life Balance? 204

How to Find Harmony Between Home and the Office, Courtesy of Spider-Man, Buddhist Monks, Albert Einstein, Professional Wrestlers, and Genghis Khan

Conclusion: What Makes a Successful Life? 259

Acknowledgments 267

References 269

About the Author 309

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