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What Makes Us Tick?: The Ten Desires That Drive Us

3.65  ·  Rating Details  ·  113 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
'vintage Mackay' Courier-Mail

'humanistic and balanced, encouraging and optimistic' Canberra Times

Insightful and engaging, What Makes Us Tick? helps to explain what drives us, concerns us and is important to each of us ? from Australia's leading social researcher, Hugh Mackay.

Dr Mackay has spent a lifetime listening to people talk about their dreams, fears, hopes, disappoi
352 pages
Published 2010 by Hachette Australia
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Banafsheh Serov
Dec 14, 2010 Banafsheh Serov rated it liked it
Truth be told, I am a sucker for studies on social behaviours. Complex and insecure, we have a tendency to think of ourselves as the most important person in the world, with problems and desires that are uniquely our own. In What Makes Us Tick? Mackay reveals that as a whole, we share ten ‘social’ desires that motivate our behavior and are linked to our sense of identity, relationship with people and place in the society. Interestingly, Mackay also offers explanations as to the motivation behind ...more
Chris Walker
Aug 07, 2015 Chris Walker rated it liked it
At times I thought this book was a bit too comfortably middle class Australian but in general I found some kernels of wisdom and reassurance here. It is a useful exercise to stop and think about what we all are striving for and I think Hugh Mackay has listened to enough people in his career to be able to make a good stab at the essentials. The fact that he is able to come away from the experience with a feeling of optimism and faith in us despite his assurance that there is little we can control ...more
Ms Tlaskal
Very interesting to dip into and reflect that all of our impulses are ways of having these ten desires fulfilled. Some of the desires are obvious; such as the desire for love and belonging whilst others are more circumspect; the desire for something to happen. Each of the ten desires would be a great starting point for a short story.
Jeremy Elias
Oct 22, 2011 Jeremy Elias rated it liked it
Interesting read. It covers a lot of things that most already know. There are some intriguing parts to the book however there is plenty of fluff in between. Interesting concept, reasonable execution.
Jacqui Allen
Apr 12, 2014 Jacqui Allen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a fascinating insight into the 10 desires that drive all human beings: to be taken seriously; for 'my place'; for something to believe in; to connect; to be useful; to belong; for more; for control; for something to happen; for love.

What I found most interesting was the fact that often when we are in conflict with ourselves or others this is a sign that some of these desires are being 'frustrated'. And, I could actually relate this to my own experiences.

I would definitely recomme
Heather Iveson
This is a book that really made me think - it gave me a lens to look through when thinking about my own choices and actions and those of others. I plan to revisit it again in future as it's knowledge well worth keeping active in my mind. Along with other books I'm currently reading or have read in the recent past I'm finding that I'm developing a new way of looking at things and learning from them. This can only be a good thing.
Ian Kloester
Aug 06, 2011 Ian Kloester rated it liked it
Every time I read Hugh's work i find an insightful voice. A voice full of reason, compassion and understanding of what it is to be human. Although drawn from observations that are arguably more anecdotal than empirical, Hugh's list of 'ten desires that make us tick' are as compelling and as convincing as anything I've read on the subject. Especially his assertion that our most important desire of all is...the desire to be taken seriously. Simple and easy to read, Hugh has found another reason fo ...more
Paige Turner
Mar 02, 2011 Paige Turner rated it liked it
Human behaviour is fascinating. Social researcher Hugh Mackay has selected 10 desires that motivate us. Each desire is expanded upon in an interesting way with observations and facts and figures presented to support his views. It is an engaging piece of writing... and Mackay cleverly weaves current topics of interest such as Australia’s population debate, economic growth, the environment, obesity, the placebo effect, etc. into his writing.
Nov 10, 2013 Zahraa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very well written and a pleasure to read - Mackay addressed the desires thoroughly enough considering the relatively short length of the book. I wish there was just a bit more than just a "discussion" of the desires.
Greg Burt
Nov 22, 2013 Greg Burt marked it as to-read
This was a Christmas present.

I had looked at it at the library and I like Hugh Mackay, he writes a column in the weekend papers. Let's see how I go with this one.
Morag Gray
Apr 20, 2011 Morag Gray rated it liked it
A once-over-lightly sweep on the emotional needs that we all have. Intersting, but not riveting or startlingly revealing.
Feb 22, 2011 Rebecca rated it liked it
This is extremely fascinating but easy to read, will be seeing about blogging on each Chapter. Lots of food for thought.
Josephine Spawton
Nov 24, 2014 Josephine Spawton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very interesting read! I will defiantly see myself and others a little differently now
Gabrielle Trenbath
Loved it!!! it was like a mirror to the human race :)
Feb 24, 2011 Helen rated it it was amazing
Fantastic. Very thought provoking and recommended
Sep 04, 2011 Cheryl rated it really liked it
I liked Hugh's writing style.
Jan 19, 2014 Cyn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book layout lots of facts and knowledge, well written and very easy to read.

'We dressed war up in stirring, inspiring stories of heroism and sacrifice, but there's a nasty story we don't often tell: we go to war because that's one of the things we want more of - why else do we maintain the world's armies and arsenals? Our desire for war is bound up with patriotic greed, economic greed, religious greed, territorial greed, delusions of grandeur, paranoia, insecurity, cultural identity and val
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Hugh Mackay is a social researcher and novelist who has made a lifelong study of the attitudes and behaviour of Australians. He is the author of twelve books, including five bestsellers. The second edition of his latest non-fiction book, Advance Australia…Where? was published in September 2008, and his fifth novel, Ways of Escape was published in May 2009.

He is a fellow of the Australian Psycholog
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