The Time Paradox: The New Psychology of Time That Will Change Your Life
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The Time Paradox: The New Psychology of Time That Will Change Your Life

3.64 of 5 stars 3.64  ·  rating details  ·  941 ratings  ·  103 reviews
Now in paperback, this breakthrough book on the new psychological science of time by one of the most influential living psychologists—the New York Times bestselling author of The Lucifer Effect—and his research partner launched on the front page of USA TODAY "Lifestyle" with a Time Survey and on CBS Morning Show.

This is the first paradox of time: Your a
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Paperback, 400 pages
Published July 7th 2009 by Atria Books (first published 2008)
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Carrie
I was looking for the positive antidote to Zimbardo's Lucifer effect, and since I'm a chronic procrastinator with ballooning anxiety issues, I figured unraveling the time paradox so as to change my life wouldn't be a bad place to start. Problem is, the book never really got going. I kept waiting for that big ah-hah, but instead I got some fairly common-sense ideas about how to have a positive outlook on time.

I did learn a couple things - some about time and some about myself.

(1) A past-negative...more
Ashley
For those who have studied psychology as an undergraduate or graduate student, you know Zimbardo, and probably from peer-reviewed journals. This book is a nice gift to the mass market. Zimbardo attempts to write in a way that is digestible to the general public, but certainly the scientist in him shows. I find his work fascinating. The use of individuals' time perspectives to describe their abilities to understand, engage in, and respond to problems, both at the individual and societal levels, i...more
Merilee


I was very disappointed w this book. I really liked The Lucifer Effect but this book really seems to have very little that wasn't obvious.
Mag
Each one of us has a different relationship to the present, past and future. We may be classified as predominantly: present, past or future oriented. Then this orientation may be fatalistic or positive. Most of us are mixtures of the above, but we all seem to have a dominant tendency. For the record, futures are the healthiest, presents most inclined to be late or take drugs, and pasts (fatalistic) to be stuck in life and depressed.

The new Zimbardo-Boyd book is a crossover of a popular science...more
Library Journal magazine
Managing Editor Heather McCormack has noticed the increasing sophistication of the self-help genre: "Zimbardo's book goes beyond the usual do-this, not-that approach to incorporate actual science on improving one's life."

What can explain the behavior of suicide bombers, successful investors, and depressives? According to psychologists Zimbardo (emeritus, Stanford Univ.; The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil) and Boyd (director of research, Yahoo!), it’s their attitude regar...more
Brandy
What a fascinating book! I learned to see time management in an entirely new way. Rather than a "how to fix this problem" book, the authors explain how our perception of time affects how we live as individuals and how members of entire cultures view and interact with each other based on perception of time. In addition to helping readers see how to recognize the value of time, the authors discuss the best ways for readers to get the most out of the time they have, based on the individual's time p...more
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The Time Paradox The New Psychology of Time That Will Change Your Life by Philip Zimbardo and John Boyd



This book is about changing your perspective on time. It focuses on different views of the past, present, and future. The basic views discussed are Past-negative, Past-positive, Present-fatalistic, Present-hedonistic, Future, and Transcendental future. This is an organization schema which I find interesting, but a bit contrived.



The authors claim that having an overly present view of time can le...more
Amanda
I often think about time, how it's a currency more valuable than money (an idea the authors confirmed for me!), how often people abuse and waste time, how sad it makes me to hear people wish time would pass by quickly when faced with boredom or something unpleasant...it's like wishing your life away. But I'm off topic. This book--especially the first half--is fascinating. I never considered how each person has a dominant time frame and how this perspective influences every decision in life. I th...more
Robert
The recommendation here, based on extensive research, is to increase your self-awareness and enjoyment of life by cultivating a combination of positive recollection and re-framing of your past (past- positive), a healthy enjoyment of the present (present hedonism) and a wise investment of future-oriented time perspective.

Counterproductive time perspectives (like past negative and present fatalism) left unattended will probably continue to shape your life negatively. The simple remedy offered her...more
Nihal Zaki
Certainly I've expected more from Zimbardo. The first section of the book was not bad at all, actually it was quiet informative and insightful. I liked Zimbardo's classification of the different time perspectives, and sure you may discover a lot about your own time perspective, that may even surprise you.
Its the second half, that the book became more of a mission of maximizing the number of pages, in which most chapters came more like self help books rather than psychology, or at least not the s...more
May
Admittedly part of the reason the rating is so low is that I expected something academically more. This book is more of a self help than a treatise on time constraints and more a discussion of how different types of people think about time. It's not quite self-help and not quite enough to make you feel like you got something truly cerebral and life changing. That said, it is an interesting framework to help a person realize there are multiple ways of looking at the same sort of thing called life...more
Lauren
I quite enjoyed reading this book, so if a star-rating is an attempt to reflect the reading experience I'd be forced to give it five our of five. However, I feel I ought to talk more about the merits and faults of the book itself, which ends up falling squarely at the "eh" point on the meter.

When I first heard that the famed Philip Zimbardo was tackling the subject of time in psychology, I was so excited that I stayed up late one night listening to hour-long lectures on the internet and immediat...more
Dana
This book required a lot of TIME to read - I have been reading it for months! Yet I found it worthwhile enough to keep going and I am glad I did - some of the thoughts really did "change my life" as the authors claimed. It helped me to better understand my own personality type and how that may complement/conflict with other people. I also realize that my personality and time perspective are changing as I get older - and that is a good thing. Here are some key points I took away:

1) "What you are,...more
Erika RS
This book was full of good content that was lost in the presentation. Even when I first got the book (as a promotional item), I was suspicious of it. The title and the reviews on the back work together to make it sound more self help oriented than science oriented. The content supported this instinct. The opening chapters on the different time perspectives are well written, but the rest of the book contains a bunch of loosely related ways to use time perspectives to improve your life. They would...more
Emily
I read this so long ago. I remember thinking of all sorts of things I'd want to say about it when I finished it. Now I've forgotten most of them. I wouldn't say that understanding The Time Paradox will change your life. I will say that while I was reading it, I couldn't stop thinking about it. The primary thesis is that how we think about time has an enormous influence on our lives. Being present, past or future oriented correlates with one's outlook on the world.
While I was struggling with a g...more
Jennifer
Really solid theory and research on our perspectives of time and what that entails (or at least implies), from its links to personality traits to explanations for suicide terrorism. As a psychology student, this was the perfect balance for me to learn the proper psychology while still being relatively easy to read/understand.

I am a little surprised by the lukewarm reviews, but it seems most came into the book with certain expectations because of the cover or Zimbardo's name/fame. This is NOT a s...more
Esther
The second time I read a book by Zimbardo (and certainly not the last!).
His way of explaining psychology to people with little or no professional knowledge is amazing. It is easy to follow, interesting and scientifically founded at the same time.
Though not quite as intense and shocking as the "Lucifer Effect", I found "The Time Paradox" more useful on a personal level.
While learning that different attitudes towards the past, the present and the future influence our behaviour, our reactions an...more
Dorothy
This book was pretty good, though it didn't have the tone I was expecting, like HOW to adjust your "time zone" if you feel you are a bit off. Personally, I think I veer too much into "future time", and would like some ideas for finding balance, and also interacting with the other types. But this was less a personality book and more some historical and factual information loosely based on these time theories. Some of the sections, like the suicide bomber part, were jarring and didn't seem to fit...more
John
The authors define six different time perspectives, provide a tool for measuring how strongly you hold each perspective, then describe how different time perspective profiles deal with life differently. They do prescribe an optimal time perspective profile and offer advice on how to move towards that profile. All of this is done with easy-to-understand reviews of studies and experiments. In spite of Dr. Zimbardo's creds, this is mainly a self-help book, but one with a measured, valuable take-awa...more
Crispy
What is the new psychology of the time paradox? I still don't know... there's nothing whatsoever counter-intuitive presented in this book and it certainly doesn't deliver the "new" psychology promised by the title. The new research around the ZTPI isn't adequately explained and almost all of the other studies discussed are time-worn classics. Things get steadily worse as the book devolves into speculation and the worst sort of self-help nonsense. Some passages read more like newspaper horoscopes...more
Dr. Lloyd E. Campbell
My son-in-law Mike and my friend Cynthia HATED this book. Both very bright people, Mike disliked what he saw as an absolutist view not befitting scientists, while Cythia thought the authors wanted all of u to be like them--reflective well-heeled college professors with few real monsters from their past nor present threats living in Palo Alto. I enjoyed the book more than they did, perhaps because I have lower standards. I found the exercises for dealing with past unfortunate experiences helpful...more
David
This topic is definitely a wonderful addition to positive psychology and should absolutely be given more attention and more sophisticated research. I might even say that it's my favorite topic within positive psychology thus far.

Overall, after finishing this book, I felt very similar to the many positive psych books I’ve read: Some great points and some less than great points. Important subject matter and overall philosophy, but less than satisfactory empirical data along with authors/researcher...more
Heather Browning
Rating is possibly lower than it should be, largely based on the fact that I found this book disappointing co pared with my expectations. I was hoping for a scientific/philosophical look at the subjective experience of time, and instead got what was closer to a self-help book. To be fair, for what it did, it seemed to do it well. The time perspective aspect of personality is not something I'd considered before and it seemed a useful way of framing many psychological issues. That said, it seemed...more
Emily
I almost didn't pick this book up because of the extremely cheesy wording on the cover. My usual rule of thumb is to steer clear of any book, organization, product or person that uses words or phrases like "change your life", "reclaim" or "finding happiness." But my interest in time perspective trumped sensational marketing.

Once I shuffled pass the first few pages, the book became somewhat grounded and I found the experiments interesting, even if many were familiar from my psychology classes in...more
Pamela Saenger
I bought this book after reading and enjoying Zimbardo's "Lucifer Effect." This book is written very differently -- I would venture to call it a self-help book, actually. While the underlying idea is interesting -- the theory that our actions are largely dictated by our individual time-perspective, which is in turn influenced by our socio-economic status, place of birth, environment, etc -- I would have preferred reading a more scholarly book that laid out the theory and the data but had fewer o...more
Yaymed
It was very interesting to learn about how we all have different perspectives about time and how this affects every area of our lives. However, the book was very repetitive and did not offer many solutions about how to have a more balanced time perspective.
Nathan
This book is an attempt at improving your life through the use of three different time perspectives. *SPOILER ALERT* There's a written test that determines the time perspective you have followed by a discussion of all three. So the question that everyone has is, "Does it really change your life?".

Look guys the answer to this question is another question, "How did you read the book?". Did you read it like a storybook or did you read it like a recipe book with principles to apply, not just a book...more
Jenny
This was a great book. I've spent so much time reading books on how to get more done, how to get ahead, how to set goals, etc. and I really don't need any more books like that. I'm already way too uptight and busy in my life. This book gave me some great insights into how to temper my "future" personality, and practical ideas on how to improve my life through more "present" and "past" focus. Fits in perfectly with the eastern philosophy and Buddhism things I've been studying. If you want a previ...more
Hendrik
Good insight on time perspective, not an easy read but worth to read.
Try the survey to know which perspective are you and there will be recommendation on how to be better.

Some of my favorite highlights:
- "Moderate attitudes toward the past, the present, and the future are indicative of health, while extreme attitudes are indicative of biases that lead predictably to unhealthy patterns of living."
- "Some present orientation is needed to enjoy life. Too much present orientation can rob life of hap...more
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Dr. Philip George Zimbardo is an American psychologist and a professor emeritus at Stanford University. He is president of the Heroic Imagination Project. He is known for his Stanford prison study, and authorship of various introductory psychology books and textbooks for college students, including The Lucifer Effect and The Time Paradox.
More about Philip G. Zimbardo...
The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil The Demise of Guys: Why Boys Are Struggling and What We Can Do About It Shyness: What It Is, What To Do About It Psychology: Core Concepts (6th Edition) The Psychology of Attitude Change and Social Influence (McGraw-Hill Series in Social Psychology)

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