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The Motivation Hacker

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  868 ratings  ·  73 reviews
“Moderation in all things,” they say. That may keep a society together, but it’s not the protagonist’s job. The Motivation Hacker shows you how to summon extreme amounts of motivation to accomplish anything you can think of. From precommitment to rejection therapy, this is your field guide to getting yourself to want to do everything you always wanted to want to do.

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ebook, 138 pages
Published April 6th 2013 by Smashwords Edition
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Julian Schrittwieser
Jun 22, 2014 rated it really liked it

> First pick your goals, then figure out which motivation hacks to use on the subtasks that lead to those goals.

$Motivation = \frac{Expectancy \times Value}{Impulsiveness \times Delay}$

# List of Motivation Techniques

- **Expectancy**: Success Spirals, surround with motivated people, Mental Contrasting, guard against excessive optimism
- **Value**: make it enjoyable, find meaning (connect with life goals), optimize energy (sleep, food), rewards
- **Impulsiv
Jan 13, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
"I don't know where you get the spark to start, only how to fan it into an inferno once you have it."

This book has taught me some cool things that I will try to apply to my own life but it dragged and went back and forth with a lot of the points he was trying to make. It felt like a gigantic blog post, it could have been just a tad shorter. Cool lessons, though. I even took notes.
Stanislav Bozhanov
Nov 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
I give it only four stars only because it's written a little bit hard to read at some points BUT on the other hand it's an AWESOME book!!! I'm using the success spiral technique and the happiness meter and a couple more of the ideas presented in the book and I started lucid dreaming which I thinks is so cool. I also made a dream journal. Soooo THANK YOU NICK! Best 3$ spent EVER!
Nov 11, 2013 rated it liked it
A great way to get to know my friend Nick better, though I enjoyed the memoir-like portions more than the actual motivation hacking segments. I'll attribute that to the fact that the book was about a friend, and that Nick had already mentioned most of these motivation hacks to me in person.

I think the book was a little bit overly boastful at times, but the stories were good. Despite the slightly annoying prevalence of self-congratulation I found the book to be an easy, and enjoyable read. And t
Apr 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: People with spoons to spare, but who find themselves lacking motivation.
I got a lot of value out of this, and have started using the techniques. Especially valuable, I think, was the way Nick writes about success spirals, and how you really have to apply this stuff in a way that will work — because faltering or half-assing it will just set you up for a harder time down the road if you try again.

Some of the book gets pretty braggy though, which personally I find *de*motivating. If that applies to you too, I'd skip or skim chapter 7 (where he tells an exaggerated tale
Bismillah Nasir Ishfaq
Dec 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book introduced me to one of the most fascinating equations that I have ever known: the motivation equation. And since after reading it, I have been applying it to many aspects of my life and am surprised to see the unexpectedly amazing results. The writer's goal in this book, after introducing the motivation equation, is to show you how he implemented its different aspects in his own life to successfully complete some ambitiously set missions, and how you can do the same by following those ...more
Dec 29, 2013 rated it liked it
Nick Winter is a non-expert who wrote this book in 3 months. That said, there is a lot here that is valuable--his enthusiasm is contagious, he's done some good research and a lot of what he talks about led me off with good directions for additional research.

Don't be deterred by the 3 star rating, you'd be hard pressed to walk away from reading it without feeling excited to learn something new, make more of your life and have a little more fun. That's worth the 3 bucks and 3 hours this book will
May 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: lesswrong, psychology
quantitative approach to motivation/goals inspired by behavioral economics/psychology

- 10-20% of good knowledge/inspiration on hacking motivation, the rest are worthless examples of implementation largely dominated by ego although could be helpful to someone without imagination
- poor structure of the book - hopefully it's short read
- rather silly approach to life in general ex. planning your day with granularity down to 5min
Ammar Lakis
Jun 24, 2017 rated it it was ok
The book had a good start, but gradually went stuffed with unnecessary details and repeated ideas. I fast-read the last chapter, that was unnecessary and overwhelmingly positive which I find damaging when speaking about productivity.
The author could have summarized most of the book with less words and better structure.
However, I liked how he showed applying the motivation hacking methods in his personal experience, so not a bad one-day reading.
Daniel Frank
Feb 02, 2017 rated it liked it
Nick's an awesome guy. This is a quick, fun and most importantly, valuable read for anyone interested in getting more out of their life.
Shaun Davidson
Sep 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great book. If I had to sum it up, I'd say he teaches you MEVID, or M = EV/ID, or Motivation = Expectancy * Value / Impulsiveness * Delay. I completely get this: expectation is the mental index you have of likelihood that you'll follow through and finish a task. Value is what it's worth to you. Impulsiveness is how likely you are to either procrastinate or get distracted from the task. And Delay is how far out in the future the potential reward is.

The entire rest of the book is either related pr
Aaron Gertler
May 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nick Winter had a productive year. Here, he discusses several days from that year literally from start to finish. I find that hyper-detailed "how to" format extremely helpful in a book that hopes to actually change my behavior. Winter also provides an excellent beginner's guide to Beeminder, one of my favorite apps.

My favorite thing about this book --- other than the fact that it cost $3 and increased my productivity by around 5% thereafter --- is that Nick is a regular guy. You can write him em
Jan 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: motivating-reads
I'd rather give this book 3.5 stars but I rounded up. The pros - breezy, and a good jumping off point to learn more about self motivation techniques. Not as braggy as it seems it might seem at first. Solid footnotes.

Con - the same one many books like this suffer from. His life is so far removed from typical (or at least mine) that it's really hard to relate. His daily schedule blew my mind for its lack of obligations. He did seem to understand this somewhat but his youth and inexperience seems
Derek Lukacs
Jul 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
“To burn always with this hard, gem-like flame, to maintain this ecstasy, is success in life.” - Walter Pater, writer

This quote starts off the book and I think it sets the stage for what this book hopes to achieve: a state of extreme motivation to accomplish goals. The book sets out some methods for "hacking motivation" as well as some anecdotes from the author's life. I agree with other reviewers that this book has a few good ideas and is bogged down with some ego but I found myself motivated t
Oct 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
Read largely like a blog post - a couple of useful ideas, but it was certainly too little and too narrow to call it a 'book'. The material was largely self-congratulatory and self-promoting with no handling of potential difficulties and research on things that may work differently for other people.
Jayson Virissimo
May 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Didn't have any techniques I hadn't learned on Less Wrong except for stacking the motivation hacks to go from just enough to get the work done to actually making it fun. Overall, a good, concise, and inspirational introduction to motivation hacking.
I read this book after watching Thomas Frank's video on the books that changed his life. There are definitely some good tips to 'hack' your motivation and do the things that you want, but I guess I just expected this book to read like a book, and not like an overly-extended article.
Basically, this is a book on how the author hacked his own motivation and accomplished success in his professional, personal and creative life. And while he was accomplishing these feats, he wrote about the process o
Charles Xu
Jun 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Nick Winter gives hope for the rest of us. He doesn't try to conquer the world with genius or talent--he merely arms himself with some crazy goals and a whole lotta motivation. But that's what makes this book inspiring--the idea that a regular guy can accomplish so much with the right system, an enthusiasm for life, and unwavering discipline.

"I’ll precommit, I’ll burn ships, I’ll create a motivation-only environment, I’ll start self-tracking to keep myself honest, I’ll find ways to make it more
Jolo Lat
Jun 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Even if this book only averages 3.8 in goodreads which is below my standard, I cannot help but give it 5 stars. This book will come down as my favorite because of his way of breaking down ways to improve motivation and give you hacks on how to accomplish so many things! It's reignited my fire to do many things in life! Must read for people who want to be productive and do a lot of things but a bit lazy.
Rakshitkumar Mahale
Aug 02, 2018 rated it liked it
My Rating: 3.2 / 5
This book lacks content. It's small and disappointing. For me this book failed to become either an inspirational read or hand guide towards a certain topic.
The only thing I liked in this book is the motivation formula explained in the beginning. Apart from that I don't know what I just read. I don't think I'm going to remember what I have read in this book because the experiments doesn't feel authentic.
Jéssica Gonçalves
There are 3 main points that made me dislike this book.

1. The book is written like a gigantic blog post, with way too many examples.
2. The writing is not clear, the author goes back and forth too many times making it difficult to understand the main point.
3. There is a huge lack of research to backup what is said in the book.

I would not recommend it.
Yuvi Panda
Nov 12, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't really get past how unaware of the author's own intense privilege the book was. There probably are things here that would be useful to me, but given where I am as a person I found it extremely hard to proceed.
Adam Wolf
Aug 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gah, I absolutely loved this. There was a good amount of insight that I hadn't seen before, and I've read and thought quite a bit about this stuff. This is the first book like this that I thought was short, rather than endlessly repeating the main points.

Nice job, Nick!
Sep 29, 2018 rated it it was ok
Read The Procrastination Equation instead, this book trivializes motivation and oversimplifies the behavioral change process. Though, the author seems to be a great person. It may not be fair to compare him to experts, but our time is scarce and the library never-ending.
Igor Jakubowicz
Aug 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
A very motivating book. Made me feel like writing a book, although I don't particularly enjoy writing. It made me feel like anything is possible if done in small bites. It also gave me an insight into the character of my son's boss - intelligent, personable and with boundless enthusiasm.
Entertaining but eh

Funny and quick read. But light in details and research. Just enough energy to get people motivated. So mission accomplished.
Linda K.
Jul 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-heart
Absolutely loved this book. Super relatable, super motivating!!
Jonas Van Baelen
Aug 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Lots of helpful tips to get you to be more productive.
David Fernando
Oct 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
A lot details on his achievements although the techniques are great
Gabriel Simonetto
May 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A small read that sells a lot of good ideas, high value book!
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Cofounder of CodeCombat and Skritter, experimenter of self, student of rationality, hacker of motivation. I wrote a book one summer in which I learned to skateboard and throw knives and lucid dream, trained for a marathon and other feats, learned a ton of Chinese, and more.

See what's up at my website:
“The tip which worked for me was to focus on input-based process goals (write for five minutes) rather than output-based results goals (write one page), and to keep the required inputs minuscule at first.” 0 likes
“To precommit is to choose now to limit your options later, preventing yourself from making the wrong choice in the face of temptation. Publicly announcing your goal is a common form of precommitment.” 0 likes
More quotes…