Tim Harford - Messy - Little, Brown Book Group

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • Hardback £20.00
    More information
    • ISBN:9781408706763
    • Publication date:27 Oct 2016
  • E-Book £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781408706770
    • Publication date:06 Oct 2016
  • Downloadable audio file £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781405536066
    • Publication date:27 Oct 2016

Messy

How to Be Creative and Resilient in a Tidy-Minded World

By Tim Harford

  • Paperback
  • £14.99

The new book from the author of The Undercover Economist shows us how we can lead messier lives - and why we should.

The urge to tidiness seems to be rooted deep in the human psyche. Many of us feel threatened by anything that is vague, unplanned, scattered around or hard to describe. We find comfort in having a script to rely on, a system to follow, in being able to categorise and file away.

We all benefit from tidy organisation - up to a point. A large library needs a reference system. Global trade needs the shipping container. Scientific collaboration needs measurement units. But the forces of tidiness have marched too far. Corporate middle managers and government bureaucrats have long tended to insist that everything must have a label, a number and a logical place in a logical system. Now that they are armed with computers and serial numbers, there is little to hold this tidy-mindedness in check. It's even spilling into our personal lives, as we corral our children into sanitised play areas or entrust our quest for love to the soulless algorithms of dating websites. Order is imposed when chaos would be more productive. Or if not chaos, then . . . messiness.

The trouble with tidiness is that, in excess, it becomes rigid, fragile and sterile. In Messy, Tim Harford reveals how qualities we value more than ever - responsiveness, resilience and creativity - simply cannot be disentangled from the messy soil that produces them.

This, then, is a book about the benefits of being messy: messy in our private lives; messy in the office, with piles of paper on the desk and unread spreadsheets; messy in the recording studio, the laboratory or in preparing for an important presentation; and messy in our approach to business, politics and economics, leaving things vague, diverse and uncomfortably made-up-on-the-spot. It's time to rediscover the benefits of a little mess.

Biographical Notes

Tim Harford is a senior columnist for the Financial Times and the presenter of Radio 4's More or Less. He was the winner of the Bastiat Prize for economic journalism in 2006, and More or Less was commended for excellence in journalism by the Royal Statistical Society in 2010, 2011 and 2012. Harford lives in Oxford with his wife and three children, and is a visiting fellow at Nuffield College,Oxford. His other books include The Undercover Economist, The Undercover Economist Strikes Back, The Logic of Life and Adapt.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781408706756
  • Publication date: 06 Oct 2016
  • Page count: 336
  • Imprint: Little, Brown
Ranging expertly across business, politics and the arts, Tim Harford makes a compelling case for the creative benefits of disorganization, improvisation and confusion. His liberating message: you'll be more successful if you stop struggling so hard to plan or control your success. Messy is a deeply researched, endlessly eye-opening adventure in the life-changing magic of not tidying up — Oliver Burkeman
[Harford's] best and deepest book — Tyler Cowen
Messy masterfully weaves together anecdote and academic work — The Economist
Harford urges us to recapture our autonomy . . . fascinating . . . Harford's argument goes beyond aesthetics, resurfacing over and over in his engrossing narrative — Maria Konnikova, author of The Confidence Game, New York Times
A profoundly stimulating canter through why we should all allow a little mess - but not chaos - in our lives, on our desks, and in our minds. A powerful expansion of Harford's previous excellent work, from a fascinating and contrasting viewpoint — David Halpern
It's a very very good book, full of wise counterintuitions and clever insights — Brian Eno
A charismatic book . . . Few writers are better qualified to champion disorder and particularity . . . Harford is an elegant and dizzyingly catholic thinker . . . entertaining and insightful — The Times
Tim Harford's brilliant new book — Viv Groskop, The Pool
Messy is a book filled with instructive stories in the manner of Malcolm Gladwell — New Statesman
Little, Brown

50 Inventions that Shaped the Modern Economy

Tim Harford
Authors:
Tim Harford

Who thought up paper money? How did the contraceptive pill change the face of the legal profession? Why was the horse collar as important for human progress as the steam engine? How did the humble spreadsheet turn the world of finance upside-down?The world economy defies comprehension. A continuously-changing system of immense complexity, it offers over ten billion distinct products and services, doubles in size every fifteen years, and links almost every one of the planet's seven billion people. It delivers astonishing luxury to hundreds of millions. It also leaves hundreds of millions behind, puts tremendous strains on the ecosystem, and has an alarming habit of stalling. Nobody is in charge of it. Indeed, no individual understands more than a fraction of what's going on. How can we make sense of this bewildering system on which our lives depend?From the tally-stick to Bitcoin, the canal lock to the jumbo jet, each invention in Tim Harford's fascinating new book has its own curious, surprising and memorable story, a vignette against a grand backdrop. Step by step, readers will start to understand where we are, how we got here, and where we might be going next.Hidden connections will be laid bare: how the barcode undermined family corner shops; why the gramophone widened inequality; how barbed wire shaped America. We'll meet the characters who developed some of these inventions, profited from them, or were ruined by them. We'll trace the economic principles that help to explain their transformative effects. And we'll ask what lessons we can learn to make wise use of future inventions, in a world where the pace of innovation will only accelerate.

Robinson

Overcoming Gambling Addiction, 2nd Edition

Alex Blaszczynski
Authors:
Alex Blaszczynski

Take control of your habit and your lifeStruggling with a gambling habit? If you feel that a 'flutter' has evolved into something out of your control, this indispensable book is for you. This self-help manual uses cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques, aspects of which were pioneered by clinical psychologist Professor Alex Blaszczynski, and now used all over the world, to help with gambling addiction. It will help you to understand how your own gambling problem has developed and what is keeping it going; also, crucially, how to develop the motivation to stop and control any future urges to gamble again. This fully revised and updated new edition takes into account the growth of sport betting and the increased ease of online gambling, as well improvements in clinical interventions.Specifically, you will learn: · Who is put at risk by gambling, with support given to friends and families · Step-by-step recovery techniques OVERCOMING self-help guides use clinically proven techniques to treat long-standing and disabling conditions, both psychological and physical. Many guides in the Overcoming series are recommended under the Reading Well Books on Prescription scheme.Series Editor: Professor Peter Cooper

Robinson

Stop Smoking Now 2nd Edition

David Marks
Authors:
David Marks
Piatkus

The Weekend Effect

Katrina Onstad
Authors:
Katrina Onstad

Years ago Katrina Onstad was an au pair in France. Every Sunday, as best as she could tell, France shut down. No one worked; no one shopped for groceries, or did any kind of shopping. It felt like a ritual, sacred and culturally protected. Now, her weekends are more like a laundry list of to-do items dashed off between hockey training, doing actual laundry, checking emails, working on an assignment, and on and on. She began to do research to see if she was alone in feeling like weekends are almost non-existent anymore. As she dug further, she realized that this feeling was almost universal. Filled with rich research and stories, as well as her own struggles, Katrina takes us through the negative impact that losing our downtime has on all areas of our lives. She'll show us how some people and companies are already taking steps to eliminate the relentless 7-day-a-week availability that modern work life seems to require. Not anti-technology, rather this is about a return to the ritual of weekend.

Robinson

Get Your Life Back

Fiona Kennedy, David Pearson
Authors:
Fiona Kennedy, David Pearson
Robinson

Stress Control

Jim White
Authors:
Jim White
Constable

The Wish

Bill Griffin
Authors:
Bill Griffin
Robinson

Overcoming Anger and Irritability, 2nd Edition

William Davies
Authors:
William Davies

Irritability, and even occasional instances of bad temper, can cause difficulties in relationships with friends, family or colleagues and leave us feeling unhappy and exhausted. If you have found this to your cost, then this book can really help.It explains what makes us angry and what we can do to prevent it. Modern psychological techniques offer a positive approach with long-term goals in mind and show how you can handle situations that would tax anybody!Overcoming self-help guides use effective therapeutic techniques to treat long-standing and disabling conditions, both psychological and physical. Many guides in the Overcoming series are recommended by the UK Department of Health under the Books on Prescription scheme.

Piatkus

Unsubscribe

Jocelyn K. Glei
Authors:
Jocelyn K. Glei
Piatkus

Uncoupling

Sara Davison
Authors:
Sara Davison
Robinson

Defeating Teenage Depression

Roslyn Law
Authors:
Roslyn Law

Are you feeling down and irritable a lot of the time? Do relationships with your family and friends seem more complicated than they used to? Do you wish that someone would understand that you aren't just being a moody teenager? If so, you're not alone and this book can help. Depression is more than being sad or in a bad mood and it can make life feel like it is all too much. Depression tells you that there is nothing you can do about it, but with the right help you can turn your story around and rediscover all there is to enjoy in life.This practical guide uses techniques based on Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Adolescents (IPT-A) which has been used to help children and young people with depression around the world. IPT-A helps you to develop your own story of what is happening in your life so that you can understand your depression and how to get out of it.You will learn who you can call on to help, even when depression tries to tell you that no one is interested. Don't listen - depression gives bad advice! IPT-A helps you to sort out the problems with other people that are an inevitable part of life when you are growing up and so much is changing around you. With IPT-A, we will get there together.

Piatkus

The Productivity Project

Chris Bailey
Authors:
Chris Bailey

Nearly all of us want to be more productive, but finding the method that works for you among the hundreds and hundreds of different tips, tricks and hacks can be a daunting prospect. After graduating college, Chris Bailey decided to dedicate a whole year to doing just that - experimenting with as many of the techniques as he could, and finding the things that work. Among the experiments that he undertook are: going several weeks on little to no sleep; cutting out caffeine and sugar; taking a daily siesta; living in total isolation for 10 days; stretching his workweek to 90 hours; and getting up at 5:30 every morning, all the while monitoring the impact of his experiments on the quality and quantity of his work. The results were often surprising! This book is the result of Chris's year-long journey, distilling the lessons he learned into a few core truths about how we get things done (or, indeed, don't). Among the many counterintuitive insights Chris discovered that had the biggest impact on his productivity were striving for imperfection; scheduling less time for important tasks; the 20 second rule to distract yourself from distractions; and the concept of productive procrastination. In this accessible and fun guide, Chris Bailey offers over 30 tried-and-tested best practices that will help everyone to accomplish more - and become more awesome.

Import Aus

Opening the Door of Your Heart

Ajahn Brahm
Authors:
Ajahn Brahm

In times of uncertainty, words of comfort are essential, and the stunning overseas sales of this title are testament to its universal appeal. These modern tales of hope, forgiveness, freedom from fear and overcoming pain cleverly relate the timeless wisdom of the Buddha's teachings and the path to true happiness in a warm and accessible way. Ajahn Brahm was born and raised in the West and in his more than thirty years as a Buddhist monk he has gathered many poignant, funny and profound stories. He has tremendous ability to filter these stories through the Buddha's teaching so that they can have meaning for all sorts of readers. There are many thousands of Australians who don't even know that they need this book yet, but who will no doubt embrace it just as overseas readers have. It is the perfect gift book as there is truly something in it for everyone.

Robinson

Overcoming Mild Traumatic Brain Injury and Post-Concussion Symptoms

Nigel S. King
Authors:
Nigel S. King

Up to 10% of people will suffer a mild head injury (or 'mild traumatic brain injury') in their lifetime and up to 50% of those people will also find they have lingering post-concussion symptoms in the months or years afterwards. These symptoms can include headaches, dizziness, fatigue, irritability, sleep disturbance, reduced day-to-day memory, poor concentration, taking longer to think, 'muzzy' headedness, depression, anxiety, tinnitus, blurred or double vision, sensitivity to light or noise, frustration, nausea, restlessness and sensitivity to alcohol. In such circumstances the 'mild' head injury may feel anything but mild. This is particularly so if large areas of your day to day life are affected. People in these circumstances can have their difficulties compounded by the very different explanations for their persisting difficulties. These usually involve receiving contradictory opinions about the extent to which ongoing symptoms are caused by neurological brain injury or other factors. These complicating factors can make it very difficult to find the right kind of service or expertise after a TBI. Patients can easily feel like they are being ''pushed from pillar to post" when trying to find services that can help with their problems. On top of all of this, there is a distinct lack of good, science- based information for patients about the best ways to manage PCS. It is therefore very common for those who experience prolonged difficulties to find their situation extremely confusing, frustrating and stressful. Dr Nigel King is an expert with much experience in this area, and has written a very valuable book weaving together the most useful knowledge in this area. It clarifies some of the complex issues for those who suffer with prolonged problems and provides practical, science-based self-help guidance for managing TBI difficulties. Using cognitive rehabilitation techniques and CBT approaches for the associated mental health complications of PCS, this much need book provides help, hope and understanding for what can be a highly disabling and misunderstood condition.

Piatkus

Mindfulness for Creativity

Danny Penman
Authors:
Danny Penman

Work deadlines, to-do lists, family commitments, pressure to perform... Our frantic lives demand so much from us that we can often feel locked into a cycle of frustration, anxiety and stress, unable to tackle the tasks before us or see a way out of our habitual ways of thinking and doing things. Yet there is a way out. The simple mindfulness techniques at the heart of this book have been proven to enhance creativity, problem solving and decision making. They also dissolve anxiety, stress and depression while enhancing mental resilience. The four week programme takes just 10-20 minutes per day.The easy-to-follow programme works by soothing and clearing your mind, allowing innovative ideas to take form and crystallise. This helps you to spontaneously 'see' the solution to a problem, to conjure up new ideas, or to create works with true insight and flair. The programme also helps build the courage necessary for you to follow your ideas wherever they should lead - and the resilience to cope with any setbacks. It will help your mind work more effectively so that you can solve problems faster, more intuitively and have the inner confidence to drive your ideas forward. The accompanying CD contains 6 meditations that you can use to build an ongoing practice, mixing and matching meditations to suit your circumstances.

Robinson

Stuff That Sucks

Ben Sedley
Authors:
Ben Sedley

Each of us has thoughts that are painful at times; sometimes the pain is sadness, sometimes worry or anger or shame or grief or some feeling that you don't even have words for. If you are a young person struggling with your emotions, you do not want to be told that 'everyone feels like that' or that 'you will grow out of it'. You want to feel that your emotions are valid and that the person offering help truly understands how painful life can feel at times. With a strong emphasis on validation and compassion, Stuff That Sucks encourages you to accept your emotions rather than struggling against them. It also shows how to reconnect with what is really important to you, giving you the tools to help clarify your personal values and take steps towards living a life where those values can guide you in your day-to-day behaviour.

Piatkus

The Oxygen Advantage

Patrick McKeown
Authors:
Patrick McKeown
Robinson

How a Little Planning Beats a Lot of Firefighting

Fergus O’Connell
Authors:
Fergus O’Connell

If you've ever been told that you 'have to do more with less' or 'work smarter not harder' and wondered what these things are supposed to mean, this book gives you the answer. It shows how a little planning - normally thought of as being the preserve of large undertakings, great construction projects or huge sporting events or military offensives - will indeed enable you to get more done with less effort.

Sphere

Very Good Lives

J.K. Rowling, Joel Holland
Contributors:
J.K. Rowling, Joel Holland

J.K. Rowling, one of the world's most inspiring writers, shares her wisdom and advice in this artfully illustrated book.In 2008, J.K. Rowling delivered a deeply affecting commencement speech at Harvard University. Now published for the first time in book form, Very Good Lives offers J.K. Rowling's words of wisdom for anyone at a turning point in life, asking the profound and provocative questions: How can we embrace failure? And how can we use our imagination to better both ourselves and others?Drawing from stories of her own post-graduate years, the world-famous author addresses some of life's most important issues with acuity and emotional force.Sales of Very Good Lives will benefit Lumos, a charity organisation founded by J.K. Rowling, which works to transform the lives of disadvantaged children, and university-wide financial aid at Harvard University.

Piatkus

The Stress Cure

Patrick Holford, Susannah Lawson
Authors:
Patrick Holford, Susannah Lawson