book review: 59 Seconds

59 Seconds by Richard Wiseman was written with the concept of how scientifically proven ideas can improve your life with the investment of only 60 seconds . The ideas in the book are presented in sections for each idea, with multiple concepts of the same idea within each section. This makes the book super easy to read and follow along. You could read for an hour, or just a few minutes to pick up the technique of the day.

One of the ideas that stood out to me was in regards to praising children. Now, I don’t have kids, so I don’t get to use this technique too often, but I was drawn by the possible effects that it can have on a childs development. The technique is to praise a child based on their efforts, not their results. For example, this is what good praise looks like. “Wow, Finlay. It really shows that you’ve been working really hard on your dribbling technique. It’s improved leaps and bounds since I last saw you.” Bad praise would be “Wow, Lottie. You’re really great at basketball.” Continuous application of the latter technique employed by various parties could result in and inflated ego in the future, with potential to leading to Kayne West Syndrome. It can also cause the child to put in less effort as they feel like the area of praise is something that they’re already sufficient in. 

Overall, a good read and a great alternative take to a traditional self help/development book. 

Wilson Lau

Photographer of weddings, and people alike.