Stumbling on Happiness (2007) explains how our brains make us think about the future. It employs accessible language and everyday examples to help us understand complex theories from psychology, neuroscience and philosophy.
Stumbling on Happiness helps answer the question: why do we make decisions that leave us unhappy? By showing how our brains work, it aims to help us imagine our futures in new ways, ways that could leave us happier.
The Rise of Superman examines the top performers in extreme sports in order to gain insight into how they use flow, i.e., the transcendental experience of being in “the zone,” to accomplish their amazing feats and connects the dots between the experience of flow and the neurology behind it.
Unbeknownst to you, a subconscious part of your brain is constantly whirring away and wielding a tremendous influence on your thoughts, feelings and behavior. Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain (2011) is your guide to the other side of your brain, and how it shapes your life.
Buddha’s Brain is a practical guide to attaining more happiness, love and wisdom in life. It aims to empower readers by providing them with practical skills and tools to help unlock their brains’ potential and achieve greater peace of mind. Specific attention is paid to the contemplative technique “mindfulness” and the latest neurological findings that support it.
The Art Of Thinking Clearly aims to illuminate our day-to-day thinking “hiccups” so that we can better avoid them and start making improved choices. Using both psychological studies and everyday examples, the author provides us with an entertaining collection of all of our most common fallacies.
Moonwalking with Einstein takes us on the author’s journey towards becoming the USA Memory Champion. Along the way he explains why an extraordinary memory isn’t just available to a select few people but to all of us. The book explores how memory works, why we’re worse at remembering than our ancestors, and explains specific techniques for improving your own memory.
These blinks provide an overview of the human brain’s capacity for thinking and for comparing new experiences to old memories. They also explain why today’s machines still aren’t able to emulate this capability, but why we may soon be able to build ones that can.
How We Learn explains the fascinating mechanisms in our minds that form and hold memories, and shows how with this information, we can better absorb and retain information. You’ll explore the many functions of the brain and gain practical advice on how to better study and learn.
The Compass of Pleasure (2011) explains what seemingly different experiences, from taking heroin to giving to charity, from overeating to orgasm, have in common: their impact on our brain’s pleasure circuitry. These blinks reveal the way pleasurable experiences rewire our brains over time and explain the true nature of addiction.
In This is Your Brain on Music (2006), musician and neuroscientist Dr. Daniel J. Levitin illuminates exactly what happens in the brain when people listen to rhythms, timbres and pitches, helping us understand why we’re so profoundly affected by music.
Habits of a Happy Brain (2012) provides a detailed introduction to the four chemicals responsible for our happiness: dopamine, serotonin, endorphin and oxytocin. The book explores the mechanics of what makes us happy and why, as well as why some bad things make us feel so good.
The Invisible Gorilla (2010) explores the way our intuition is not the beacon of guiding light we think it is. In fact, it’s often erroneously based on illusions. By debunking some examples of common knowledge, Chabris and Simons argue why our intuition often cannot be trusted.
So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed (2015) looks into the terrifying nature of online public shaming. Tracing it back to its historical roots, the book details the motivations behind modern public shaming and offers tips on what to do if you find yourself at the center of a public shaming scandal.
Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming (1990) presents a step-by-step guide to the fascinating world of lucid dreams. It introduces various techniques on how to evoke lucidity and how lucid dreaming can be used to enrich your waking life.
Smarter questions our understanding of intelligence in this new age of brain-training games. From the traditional adage of “healthy body, healthy mind,” to the latest advances in computerised brain training games, these blinks explore scientifically established methods of improving cognitive abilities.
In an attempt to reveal the source of humanity’s capacity for evil, The Lucifer Effect (2007) delves deep into the dark corners of the human mind. It shows how we walk a fine line between monstrosity and heroism daily – yet it isn’t our nature that determines on which side of the line we fall, but the numerous situational forces that permeate our lives.
How can stroke victims who become paralyzed start using a fork or buttoning their shirts again? Well, contrary to what was believed for so long, the brain is not hardwired. It can change, regenerate and grow. Drawing on real-life cases of scientists, doctors and patients, The Brain that Changes Itself (2007) shows us how, rather than relying on surgery and medicine, we can alter our brains through thought and behavior.
Despite all the scientific breakthroughs made in recent decades, we still don’t fully understand the human brain. However, we have discovered some important neuroscientific facts. Backed by research, helpful examples and exercises, Activate Your Brain (2015) shows you how you can use this knowledge to make the best use of your brain and live a more fulfilled and mindful life.
The Secret Life of Pronouns (2011) shines a light on the everyday language that we seldom pay attention to, revealing the ways in which it serves as a window into our personality and our social connections.
Obedience to Authority (1974) explores some of the darker elements of the human mind. It addresses tough issues, like why we follow orders and how far we’ll go when commanded to do something. With the author’s own seminal experiments as a backdrop, you’ll learn how even the most upright people can turn into cruel monsters under certain conditions.
What makes you smile, laugh or feel like skipping down the street? Teams of professional psychologists, neuroscientists, marketers, economists and your boss all want to know. Why? So they can make sure you are a productive employee who buys lots of stuff! The Happiness Industry (2015) takes an in-depth look at how our happiness is studied, measured, and profited from – often without our knowledge or consent.
Mindware (2015) is a guide to reason. These blinks explain why we make irrational assumptions while presenting the cognitive tools that statisticians, logicians and philosophers use to approach everyday problems with objectivity.
Use Your Memory (1986) reveals how to develop, train and employ a stellar memory. In a series of guided step-by-step mental exercises, this book will give you all the tools you need to memorize everything from short grocery lists to complex subject matter.
How to Create a Mind (2012) offers an intimate examination of the nuts and bolts behind how the brain works. Once we understand exactly how people think, perceive the world and decide to take action, the creation of true artificial intelligence seems a possibility that’s just around the corner.
The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons (2014) is a trip into the fascinating world of the human brain via some of the strangest psychological case studies in history. Until quite recently, neuroscientists could only study the brain by analyzing the thoughts and behaviors of people with aberrant brains. Sam Kean uses these historic case studies to paint a picture of the organ that creates our emotions, personality and consciousness.
Talking to Crazy (2015) acknowledges that each person has the potential to be a little crazy, giving into irrational behavior when the mood strikes. These blinks offer sound advice on how to empathize and communicate with a person in “crazy mode” so you can keep yourself from going off the deep end, too.
The Brain’s Way of Healing (2015) highlights the human brain’s amazing ability to change its structure and develop new ways of coping with disorders. The brain, whether by being “rewired” to process information in new ways or by being “trained” through repetitive exercises, can overcome debilitating diseases and heal itself.
Rethinking Narcissism (2015) provides fresh perspectives on what we typically understand as arrogance or vanity. These blinks situate narcissism both historically and culturally, explaining the spectrum of narcissism and its different forms; they also provide helpful strategies for recognizing and dealing with the narcissists you might know.
The Seven Sins of Memory (2002) offers a close look at the seven ways our memory can let us down: from why we always lose our car keys to why some people are haunted by recurring negative thoughts. The book also discusses how to mitigate these shortcomings and why they’re actually trade-offs for massive memory benefits. By examining how our memory works and its faults, we see that these weaknesses are actually just side effects of a very clever system.
Why Everyone (Else) Is a Hypocrite (2010) pushes us to challenge our assumptions about the human brain. These blinks explain the modular structure of our mind which, rather than creating a coherent conscious self, can lead to confusion and conflict as evolutionary traits clash with the challenges of the modern world.
You May Also Like (2016) dives into the ever-changing world of taste, or what you like and why you like it. Trying to guess whether a consumer will enjoy a movie or buy a product is both tricky science and big business, as a myriad of different factors influences the decisions you make daily.
Felt Time (2014) examines how your brain processes time. These blinks present fascinating facts and theories about how our bodies perceive time, and offers advice on how to make the most of the present moment, deal with boredom and control the pace of our lives.
Born Liars (2011) uncovers the truth about lying and the important role it plays in our lives. Far from being some undesirable glitch in the human system, lying has not only made us smarter but saved many lives and become an essential ingredient to our overall well-being. In these blinks, you’ll learn all about the history and neuroscience of fibbing, why it might be impossible to detect every lie and how central mendacity truly is to being human.
The Inner Game of Tennis (1972) explains the tension between your conscious and unconscious minds, and how this conflict relates to performance, specifically through the lens of tennis. These blinks offer concrete advice on how to harness your natural ability and excel both on the court and off.
Sigmund Freud’s cornerstone work, The Interpretation of Dreams (1900), was one of the most influential books of the twentieth century and continues to shape the way we think and create. These blinks offer a fascinating insight into Freud’s understanding of dreams: what they mean, where they come from, how they are formed and how we can understand them.
The Aesthetic Brain (2014) explains how and why the human brain responds to beauty and art. These blinks break down the reasons why we instinctively prefer some faces to others, what art does to our brains and how we started making art in the first place.
This Is Your Brain on Parasites (2016) is about the microscopic organisms that live inside us. They sometimes make us sick and, more surprisingly, they drive human evolution in a variety of ways. These blinks explain how parasites can guide personalities, emotions and even culture.
End the Insomnia Struggle (2016) is a guide to getting a good night’s sleep. These blinks are full of practical advice on how to handle sleeplessness. They explain, among other things, how to track your sleep problems, understand the science of insomnia and apply a variety of strategies that’ll help you get the rest you need.
My Stroke of Insight (2008) is about Jill Bolte Taylor, a neuroscientist who suffered a stroke in her mid-thirties. These blinks detail her personal story from medical school to experiencing a stroke to learning how to walk, talk and even identify colors again.
Humans are complex beings, and human behavior doubly so. Every human act is a result of a myriad of factors, from brain chemistry to social conditioning, that have developed over millennia. In Behave (2017), renowned professor Robert Sapolsky takes a journey into the depths of the human condition, demonstrating the reasons behind the best – and worst – of human behavior.
Alex Soojung-Kim Pang’s The Distraction Addiction (2013) takes a look at attention in today’s distraction-riddled society and asks how we can stay connected and productive. Drawing on fascinating new research by neuroscientists and psychologists, as well as traditional Buddhist thought, Pang offers hands-on advice on how to stay focused and overcome our internet addictions in a new digital age.
Patient H. M. (2016) chronicles the history of the lobotomy procedure, focusing particularly on a famous figure in this story – an amnesic named Henry Molaison, or, as he is also known, Patient H.M. Journey back to when the lobotomy first became a popular treatment for mental illness and learn how it helped us better understand the brain.
The Fear Factor (2017) examines the multifaceted role that fear plays in our lives. Though commonly perceived as a purely negative emotion, fear is in fact linked to several virtuous human characteristics, such as empathy and altruism.
A Really Good Day (2018) is the true story of one writer’s attempt to tackle her struggles with depression and mood disorder through a novel – and illegal – remedy: microdoses of LSD. Charting her experiment with the drug over 30 days, Ayelet Waldman explores her reactions and discovers a newfound sense of serenity in her everyday life. At the same time, A Really Good Day is a broader exploration of the history of LSD, the myths that surround it and society’s attitudes toward legal and illegal drugs.
The Brain (2015) unpacks the latest neuroscientific research and sheds light on questions that have perplexed philosophers for millennia. What defines a personality? Why does it keep changing? Is reality really “out there” or are we merely hallucinating? By turns fascinating and unsettling, this is a book that will redefine your idea of the strange and uncanny life of the mind.
No-Drama Discipline (2014) provides a fresh approach to disciplining children by emphasizing the importance of teaching over punishment. Based on neuroscience, this method reduces drama and guides parents on how to build a deeper relationship with their children.
How to Change Your Mind (2018) is a fascinating account of one man’s exploration of the psychedelic drug world. Author Michael Pollan takes readers along for the ride as he learns first-hand about the positive aspects of psychedelic drugs, including the healing and restorative effects they can have on people suffering from depression and addiction. Readers will also hear from neuroscientists to learn exactly what is happening in the brain during a psychedelic trip.
The Strange Order of Things (2018) takes us through the history of human cultural development while focusing on a motivating factor that often gets overlooked: our feelings. When accounting for the major innovations and developments of the past, we often credit human intelligence more than emotions and feelings. But as author Antonio Damasio argues, it’s our feelings that push us forward, inspire our creative accomplishments and define who we are.
Descartes’ Error (1995) turns conventional wisdom about the human mind on its head. Combining sophisticated neuroscience with fascinating case studies about patients with brain damage, it shows how the traditional dualisms of Western thought do not stand up to scrutiny. Reason depends on emotion, and the brain is intimately connected with the body.
Never Enough (2019) is about drugs and addiction. The author explores the science behind drugs ranging from alcohol to cocaine and explains why certain people are more prone to addiction than others.
The Biological Mind (2018) debunks the “cerebral mystique,” the commonly held belief that our brains are somehow completely independent from our bodies and our surroundings. Using the latest insights from neuroscience, psychology, and philosophy, this approachable primer demonstrates that what you see as yourself is much more complex than you thought.
Suggestible You (2016) shows the amazing ways our expectations affect our body’s responses to illness, pain and memory. It explores how the power of human suggestibility changes the processes that happen in our bodies and minds. And it describes how humans can – and already do – harness this ability to improve lives, whether in medicine or in everyday life.
Brain Wash (2020) is a no-nonsense handbook for living a calm and content life in a world that’s designed to deliver the opposite. Medical doctors David and Austin Perlmutter unpack how our modern society manipulates our brains. Then they lay out a powerful 10-day bootcamp for breaking these bad patterns and building healthier habits.
Phantoms in the Brain (1998) is an enduring classic of popular science that has transformed how we think about the brain and its relationship to the human experience. Drawing on the author’s clinical practice, it presents a series of patients with rare and astonishing neurological conditions. These case studies illuminate the architecture of our brains and, in the process, cast fresh light on timeless philosophical questions regarding the nature of consciousness, identity, and reality itself.
Deviate (2017) is a primer on the sometimes-tricky neuroscience behind human perception. It details all the illusions, distortions, and shortcuts our brains take when making sense of the world around us.
The Disordered Mind (2018) explores what disorders and diseases of the brain can tell us about the inner workings of our minds. Acclaimed neuroscientist Eric R. Kandel draws on a lifetime of research to explain what depression, schizophrenia, addiction, and more reveal about how our brains affect our thoughts, feelings, and behavior – and explains how new scientific methods could help solve the big puzzle of consciousness.
The Hidden Brain (2010) reveals the function and effects of our unconscious lives. In our increasingly interconnected world, unconscious biases and errors influence our memories, judgments, and perceptions and shape our social, economic, and political institutions.
Remember (2021) is about our marvelous and flawed ability to create memories. It explores the different sorts of memories we create, how the brain makes them, why they often fail, and what we can do to get the best out of our astonishing and troubled capacity to remember.
Subtract (2021) explores subtraction as a way to make positive change. It examines the human love affair with adding and having “more” – and it explains how our brains and environments work against subtraction.
Wiser (2020) combines a scientific approach to wisdom with practical tips on how to grow wiser today. Drawing on decades of research and cutting-edge studies, it pairs explanation and advice in its investigation of compassion, aging, decision-making, and more.
The Extended Mind (2021) is an exploration of the power of thinking outside the confines of your brain. It shows that the path to greater intelligence is not locked within your skull. Rather, it's a path through your body, your environment and your relationships with others.
Frames of Mind (1983) is a landmark text that first proposed the psychological theory of multiple intelligences. Upending the long-held conception that intelligence is just one general, monolithic trait, it argues instead that there are several intelligences that everyone possesses in different quantities. By studying them, educators and policymakers can reshape the educational system to benefit a much greater number of students than the current programs do.
Wired for Love (2012) is a guide to maintaining closeness and emotional security within romantic partnerships. It uses research from neurobiology and psychology to show why long-term couples come into conflict, and it offers practical tips on how to use knowledge about brain functions to promote peace and mutual security in your relationship.
Smarter Tomorrow (2021) shows you how to upgrade your brain using a technique called neurohacking. You’ll learn how to improve your memory, creativity, emotional regulation, and what’s known as “executive functioning” through self-testing and experimentation – all backed up with insights from neuroscience.
The Female Brain (2006) is a classic of popular neuroscience which argues that hormone-driven neural development shapes many of women’s drives and behaviors. Just a few hormones chart a course through the cycle of changes that mark life with a female brain.
Being You (2021) offers a new theory of consciousness. What does it mean to be you? Why do your experiences of the world, your selfhood, and your body feel the way they do? Combining neuroscience, philosophy, and a pinch of speculation, these blinks argue that consciousness is not as mysterious as it seems – it is deeply entwined with our living, breathing bodies.
Dopamine Nation (2021) explores the connection between pleasure and pain. Our modern world is filled with more dopamine-inducing stimuli than ever – including everything from drugs and sex to smartphones and shopping. Citing years of clinical experience and patients’ stories, this book helps to understand addiction and explains how to achieve a healthy balance in our lives.
Evolve Your Brain (2007) dives deep into the human brain and its structures. It demonstrates the power of neuroplasticity to change thinking, behavior, and biology.
The Male Brain (2010) is a neuroscientist’s account of the interplay between hormones and brain development that shapes the formation and growth of male brains and behavior. Based on decades of research, it argues that the roots of many masculine stereotypes can be seen in neurobiology, and that hormones shape the male brain and outlook for a lifetime.
Collective Illusions (2022) explores the idea of conformity bias: how it shapes our decisions for better or worse, and how we can overcome this behavior and even use it for good.
And Finally (2022) is about a doctor becoming a patient. The process is painful for neurosurgeon and author Dr. Henry Marsh but in the end, he finds acceptance and understands what truly matters.
Rewire Your Anxious Brain (2015) is a powerful guide to overcoming anxiety. Based on the latest research in neuroscience, it explains how two separate regions of the brain are responsible for producing anxiety – and how each requires different strategies and approaches.
The Mind-Gut Connection (2016) explores the complex relationship between the gut and brain, highlighting the crucial role this connection plays in both physical and mental health. The book delves into key insights, such as the brain-gut axis, the impact of stress on gut health, and the connection between food and mental well-being, emphasizing the need for holistic care to improve overall health.
The Explosive Child (2021) is a groundbreaking and scientific guide to dealing with children who react extremely to routine situations. Drawing on neuroscience and child psychology, Greene lays out a conceptual framework focused on the cause of the behavior, rather than the behavior itself. This framework can serve as a guide for frustrated parents who want to understand and address their child’s severe outbursts.
A Thousand Brains (2021) explores the fundamental nature of intelligence. It poses the theory that the brain is a collection of thousands of mini-brains, each generating and refining their own predictions. It also delves into the implications of this theory for artificial intelligence and our understanding of consciousness.
Divergent Mind (2020) is a groundbreaking look at neurodiversity in women and girls, with a particular focus on the impacts of late diagnosis and the overall lack of clinical research.
Psych (2023) offers an informed, insightful, and approachable overview of psychology, starting with its origins and earliest thought leaders to the most recent findings in modern practice. Based on the author’s popular Introduction to Psychology course developed for Yale University, it uses lively storytelling and studies to easily relate the complex science of the human mind.
The Teenage Brain (2014) delves into the labyrinth of teenage neuroscience, offering a captivating exploration of why teens think and act the way they do. With a blend of science and real-world anecdotes, it illuminates the complexities and wonders of a brain in flux.
Seven and a Half Lessons About the Brain (2020) is an engaging exploration of the human brain that debunks numerous misconceptions along the way. It explains what brains are actually for, how they develop, what makes them unique, and why they’re often one step ahead of everything you do.
The Power of Neurodiversity (2011) explores how reframing neurological differences as diversity rather than disorder can empower those with atypical minds. It covers the strengths of neurodivergent thinking, finding one's niche, positive adaptations, and envisioning a more inclusive world. It invites us to celebrate the brilliance found in all human brains.
The Practice of Adaptive Leadership (2009) demonstrates how leaders can mobilize people to tackle tough challenges and thrive in the face of harsh realities that demand new skills and responses. It provides a practical framework for diagnosing situations, distinguishing between technical problems and adaptive challenges, and avoiding common leadership pitfalls that come with over-dependence on authority.
Visual Thinking (2022) offers an authoritative view on different ways of thinking, and how those differences have been crucial to many of our biggest creative advancements. It shows how society tends to be biased toward verbal thinkers – and how visual thinkers, albeit typically underserved in society, bring an array of crucial skills to various domains.
'A Deadly Wandering' by Matt Richtel exposes the tragic consequences of distracted driving. Combining investigative reporting and scientific analysis, Richtel demonstrates how technology addiction has led to an alarming rise in fatal accidents. Through the captivating story of one young man's reckless driving and its devastating aftermath, the book raises awareness about the dangers of distracted driving and the urgent need for change.