The Books That Made Nir Eyal



In this episode of 'The Books That Made Me', Ben Keene (Co-founder of Rebel Book Club) talks to Nir Eyal about 3 nonfiction books that have had a massive impact on him to date, including some inspiring titles on both addiction and habit-forming that inspired his best-selling books, Indistractable and Hooked.

Nir also shares with us why basic assumptions that 'tech is bad' lacks the necessary nuance, plus some key insights into his processes as an author + investor.


About Nir Eyal

Nir Eyal writes, consults, and teaches about the intersection of psychology, technology, and business. He is the author of two bestselling books, Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products and Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life. Indistractable received critical acclaim, winning the Outstanding Works of Literature Award as well as being named one of the Best Business and Leadership Books of the Year by Amazon and one of the Best Personal Development Books of the Year by Audible. The Globe and Mail called Indistractable, “the best business book of 2019.”

In addition to blogging at, Nir’s writing has been featured in The New York Times, The Harvard Business Review, Time Magazine, and Psychology Today. Nir co-founded and sold two tech companies since 2003 and was dubbed by The M.I.T. Technology Review as, “The Prophet of Habit-Forming Technology.” Bloomberg Business week wrote, “Nir Eyal is the habits guy. Want to understand how to get app users to come back again and again? Then Eyal is your man. Nir previously taught as a Lecturer in Marketing at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design at Stanford.


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[00:00:00] What morons tend to lose first is nuance. That morons like to make everything into black and white thinking, and that leads us nowhere. And so when you hear people saying silly things like, "Oh, tech is bad, screen time is evil," what are you talking about exactly, as you mentioned, what kind of screen time? What are you doing online?


[00:00:20] Welcome to The Books That Made Me, a brand new podcast from Revel Book Club, and today we're chatting with Nir Eyal, who's been a popular and highly recommended author in the Rebel Book Club community, and I think mainly because his books are great lessons for people who are looking to work on habits, whether it's in work or in life in general, and to really get focused on doing the things that matter to them.

And in this conversation today, Nir is brilliant at taking us through exactly what he's an expert in. And so if you wanna sharpen your skills, keep listening.


[00:01:04] Oh, it's so great to be here with you. Thank you so much.


[00:01:07] And you are in Singapore today. Is that your home for writing and changing the world?


[00:01:13] It's been my home for the past two years or so, yeah.


[00:01:16] Fantastic. And let's just talk briefly at the start before we go into the books that shaped you.

Um, let's look at the books that, uh, you've written. So what came first, was it Indistractable, was the first book?


[00:01:29] No, Hooked. Actually, Hooked was published in 2014 and Indistractable was in 2019.

So Hooked was about how do you build habit-forming products. And the reason I wrote that book was because I wanted to help companies steal the secrets of products like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Slack, so that all kinds of products and services can make their products more sticky and build healthy habits in users.

The book has been used in every conceivable industry, from health tech to FinTech to educational technology companies. Every type of product that wants to build a healthy habit, that's the target reader for Hooked. If Hooked is about how do we build healthy habits with technology, Indistractable is about how do we break those bad habits that oftentimes distract us away from what we want to do with our time and attention.


[00:02:20] Between the two books, you talk about healthy habits, creating healthy habits in business and life, and then breaking bad habits, and in the influencer economy, there's a conversation we're having this month at Rebel Book Club is all around like, how have so many people been sucked into these basically bad habits and, you know, whether it's chasing wealth, going to extremes to chase wealth, or worse, right? And, and crime and beyond.

So what have you seen on your journey since writing these books about the culture around, creating healthy and also all the bad habits online?


[00:02:56] Yeah. So I really look at it through this lens of distraction. When you look at the origin of the word distraction, there are some pretty telling lessons and interesting insights. If you ask most people, what's the opposite of distraction?

They'll tell you it's focus. But, but that's not exactly right. The opposite of distraction, if you look at the origin of the word, is not focused. The opposite of distraction is traction. We have traction and we have distraction. Both words come from the same Latin root "tahare," which means to pull. And you'll notice that both words end in the same six letters: A C T I O N, that spells action, reminding us that distraction is not something that happens to us, but rather it is an action that we ourselves take.

So traction, by definition, is any action that pulls you towards what you say you're going to do, things that pull you closer to your values, move you closer to becoming the kind of person you want to become. The opposite of traction is, of course, distraction. Distractions are actions that we take that pull us further away from what we plan to do, further away from our intentions, further away from becoming the kind of people we want to become.

And so, through that lens, you realize how important defining your values truly is. Values, I define as attributes of the person you want to become. So what I try and stay away from is this moralizing and medicalizing of every behavior.

We like to blame and shame and moralize and medicalize other people's behaviors and judge them for what they do with their time and attention. But what we do with our time is somehow fine. So spending time watching football, that's fine. But spending time on Facebook and Instagram, that's morally reprehensible, what a waste.

And I say no, that in fact anything you want to do with your time and attention, as long as it's done with intent, do it. Enjoy. There's nothing wrong with going on Facebook. This discussion around, "Oh, it's melting our brains. It's hijacking our minds," rubbish. Ridiculous. Nothing more than a moral panic. If you want to use these products, use them, enjoy them, but use them according to your values and on your schedule, not someone else's. Certainly not the tech companies.


[00:04:58] It's a great reminder, and I know it's based in science as well as just your perspective. Um, and it reminds me of a conversation that I was having about school children and our own children at the moment about building resilient children. And one, um, the psychologist was saying one of the big myths around kids and time online is that we think that screen time equals bad or too much screen time equals bad.

Mm-hmm, when actually it's around screen use and it's, it's that intention which you talk about. Um, that gives us a really quick intro cause we'll get into these books that point into like, the habit for the healthy habit forming loop that leads to, um, you know, in positive intent that drives, um, drives good action in life.


[00:05:45] Yeah, so I think you're absolutely right that you know what, what morons tend to lose first is nuance. That morons like to make everything into black and white thinking, and that leads us nowhere. And so when you hear people saying silly things like, oh, tech is bad, screen time is evil. Well, what are you talking about exactly? As you mentioned, you know, what kind of screen time, what are you doing online?

Are you mindlessly watching a show on TV? Or are you interacting with people online? That's screen time, right? Are you talking to your grandparents? If you're a child, are you talking to your grandparents online over Skype? Or are you playing video games? How much have you done those things?

Who is the user, right? All of these things need to be taken into account. And I think what tends to happen is that we get very intellectually lazy, and we like to blame and shame, and we like to have villains that absolve us of responsibility. Right, that we want to think we're addicted. I hear this word thrown around all the time.

An addiction is a pathology, and yet somehow we're all addicted. No, we're not. We're just distracted. The thing is, we don't like to use that verbiage because when we think about an addiction, there's a dealer, there's a pusher, there's someone doing it to us. But when we realize what it really is for the vast majority of people, meaning people who don't have the pathology like OCD or ADHD or an addiction, which is 97 to 99% of the population, they don't have any kind of pathology. What they have is a distraction. But when we call it a distraction, wait a minute, now I gotta do something about it. That's no fun. Can't I just blame Zuckerberg for my problems? No. And in fact, I wish it was just the technology's fault, but the fact is distraction has been with us since time immemorial, right?

Plato and Socrates talked about Acacia, the tendency to do things against our better interest. And if people have been struggling with distraction for at least the past 2,500 years, it can't be the internet that's causing this stuff. It can. So this stuff isn't your fault. It's not your fault that you get distracted.

You didn't invent the news. You didn't invent Facebook. You didn't invent these things. It's not your fault, but it is your responsibility because whose responsibility can it possibly be? Are we gonna wait for the politicians to fix this problem? No. Are we gonna wait for the tech companies to fix this problem?

If you hold your breath, you're gonna suffocate. So what I wanna do is to empower people to do something about it right now. Why the heck would we wait? And the fact of the matter is when you actually stop complaining and start looking at the problem itself and realize how much agency we have, you realize that we are far more powerful than these tech companies.

I know every trick in the book. I wrote the book, I wrote the book Hooked exactly on how these companies get you hooked. And I know all their tricks and I'll tell you, they're good. They're not that good. This isn't, you know, we're not injecting Instagram. We're not freebasing Facebook here. We can do something about this problem if we want to.

If we absolve ourselves of responsibility and we throw our hands up in the air and say, there's nothing I can do and we're all addicted, well then guess what people do? Nothing. And this leads to the state of learned helplessness, which ironically is exactly what the tech companies want.

They want you to believe there's nothing you can do because they know once you believe that, you won't do anything to fix the problem.


[00:08:55] Such a clear and healthy reminder that we have the agency to do this. Why do you think so many sways of people or culturally we're not very good at, you know, we keep collapsing back into learned helplessness, which obviously plays back into the big tech hands. Why is it, is it laziness?

Is it apathy or is it a lack of understanding that you are helping people sort of break down?


[00:09:24] Well, I think there's a few things going on. One is that this is the price of progress. That this is the first time in human history that we live in an age of abundance. For the past 200,000 years, up until the very recent present, more people have died from starvation than excess. And now that's flipped. More people die today from diseases of excess like diabetes and obesity than die of starvation. That has never happened in the history of mankind. And thank goodness that that's happened because now for the first time in human history, we have more calories than we need to feed every man, woman, and child on the face of the earth.

That has never happened before. The price of that progress is that we need to learn how to manage what goes into our bodies and that sucks. That is hard work. But this is how we evolve as a species, right?

We have all this abundance. Now what do we do? Do we shake our fists at the Green Revolution and say, oh my goodness, look at all this abundance. How can this happen? This is terrible. Let's go backwards. No, you can't go backwards. We have to learn how to adapt our behavior and adopt new technologies to fix the last generation of technologies. And this is hard work, no doubt about it. And so we see the exact same thing happening when it comes to this abundance of information.

For the past 200,000 years, information was scarce. And then all of a sudden, just in the past couple decades, we have more information than we know what to do with. You'll never read all the news of the day. You'll never see all the websites, you'll never see all the YouTube videos. It's impossible.

So we have to learn these new techniques to deal with this influx of information because even though distraction is nothing new, the world is becoming more distracting than ever. If you're looking for distraction, it's easier than ever to find.

So the world is bifurcating into two kinds of people. People who allow their time and attention to be controlled and manipulated by others, and people who say, no, I decide how I will spend my time and attention. I will decide my life because I am indistractable.

And the good news is, this doesn't require a lot of money. You don't have to be of a particular socioeconomic class. Anybody can do this by simply learning some of these very simple techniques that do take some effort. But you know, everything in life worth having takes a little bit of effort.


[00:11:32] Absolutely. And I assume your stoic heroes, Plato and Socrates, would be on the indistractable side of the coin in this new world, and I wonder what their Twitter feeds would look like. Um, there's a thousand of them and it's still alive. Anyway, that's their legacy, isn't it?

Nir, so let's talk about the books that shaped you as a person and this worldview that you've come to through all this science around behavior change. The first book you mentioned to us is Get a Financial Life. Tell us a little bit about the book and the impact it had on you.


[00:12:10] Yeah. So let's see. So I came to this book after my older brother. So I'm the youngest of three boys and there's a gap of 10 years between my oldest brother and myself. And I remember my oldest brother got himself into $20,000 of credit card debt when he was in his early twenties. And this was a huge, huge problem...

And I remember the torment that he went through with my parents, coming clean and then finally, them helping him get out of this trap. And I told myself, I'll never let that happen to me. And I remember even in high school, I got this... I don't remember where I heard of it, but probably at the bookstore at the time.

We didn't have the internet back then. And I read this book and it clearly explained how there are interests out there who make money from your bad financial decisions. And if you are not aware of these traps, you know, high-interest rate credit cards, the importance of saving early, the power of compound interest... None of this stuff is rocket science. You can explain this to a high schooler pretty easily. And I found that fascinating, right? That these small steps can make such a big difference. And I found it amazing that these companies didn't have to tell you about these pitfalls.

Y know, I remember my brother thinking that he could just pay the minimum amount that it set on his credit card statement every month, and how much trouble that got him into, as opposed to, you know, one of the first rules is you don't want to spend money you don't have, right?

How simple is that advice? If you can't afford something, don't buy it. But that's not how most people behave when it comes to credit cards. They spend and spend and spend without actually budgeting whether they're going to be able to pay it off. And so simple rules like that and understanding the power of intent, the power of deciding in advance how you will behave, I think really shaped my life.

And it even goes all the way to indistractable today because I would say if there's one summary of the book Indistractable, it's that the antidote to impulsiveness is forethought. I mean, that's really, I think the through line of this book, starting from Get a Financial Life to Indistractable is that the antidote to impulsiveness is forethought.

That when it comes to distraction of all sorts, it's all about impulse control. Whether it's time management, it's pain management, um, money management is pain management. Weight management is pain management.

That these distractions in life, doing things that we didn't intend, doing things that we later regret. It's not a moral failing. There's nothing wrong with you. You're not broken in any way. It's just that we haven't learned to deal with this discomfort. Yeah. With what I call internal triggers. Yeah. And so whether it's, "Ooh, I really wanna buy that thing," or "I really want to eat that dessert," or "I really want to go check Facebook," it's all about impulse control. It's all about dealing with these uncomfortable emotional states. And once we learn to control those internal triggers, once we learn to master them, they stop mastering us. And that's, that's a really big insight that I think has shaped my life to date.


[00:15:24] It's a really big insight and it's a, although obviously it was your brother's pain that brought it to you, combined with this book, Get a Financial Life, and it's Beth Kobliner. I looked it up. It looks like it's still available and they're not as easy to buy as Indistractable online these days.

Um, why do you think these, uh, you know, impulse control, uh, ways of looking at the world combined with the raw information about things like personal finance or diet aren't taught across our education systems as well as they should be?


[00:16:00] That is a great question. I do not know. That's something you almost never hear an author say.


[00:16:06] No - 'Cause it means there's a, there's an opportunity, right?


[00:16:10] Yeah, I don't know. Yeah. I really don't know. Why do we teach kids chemistry and we don't teach them how to balance their checking account?

I have no idea. Yeah. I, it seems like it should be. You know, we send kids off to university, and as soon as they get there, remember this happened to me as soon as I started college, you know, on move-in day, there's a line of credit card companies waiting to sign up 18-year-olds. Yeah. With the promise of a free fricking t-shirt. That's the incentive.

And people were signing up for these terrible credit card offers. Maybe they don't do this anymore. This was a long time ago, but I'm sure there's something similar out there in the financial services space. And it really is because of a lack of knowledge about how these things work. So I really don't know why we don't teach students this. We should.


[00:16:58] And did your brother recover his debt?


[00:17:01] My parents bailed him out so that he would stop having to pay the 20% interest rate he was paying at the time. And then he had to pay them back every month. And he eventually did work his way out of it.


[00:17:14] That's great to hear.


[00:17:20] So it turns out you don't just need to be a published author to have had books change your life. We see this happen every month at Rebel Book Club, and we're also seeing our members reading habits shift as well towards listening to more books to fit around their busy digital lives on the move. So when we found out about a new audiobook service called xigxag, we were excited to give it a try.

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The future of reading is multi-format and we are pumped to be teaming up with a brilliant indie audiobook startup. Now talking of books that change lives...


[00:18:40] You mentioned these books, and you say sometimes, despite knowing a behavior is harming someone, people don't seem to control their decision. So this is where you started looking into addiction more, and the next book that shaped you is "Memoirs of an Addicted Brain."

Tell us a little bit about this book and the impact it had.


[00:18:52] Yeah, so this book is a fantastic book. This is a book by a man who is very rare in that today he is a world-renowned neuroscientist, but he himself was an addict. And what I loved about this book is that it's very difficult to get into the mind of an addict, you know, where someone will recover from their addiction and kind of live to tell the tale in such an eloquent way from a scientific perspective.

And I think what this book really did for me was to elucidate what is this pathology of addiction that I think we, you know, addiction is one of these words that we throw around all the time. If you like something a lot, ooh, you're addicted to it. And that's not at all what addiction is. Addiction is a pathology. We wouldn't talk this way about Tourettes or epilepsy, and yet somehow everyone is addicted. No, very few people are addicted, but those who are addicted have a confluence of factors. And I think that's what this book really illustrates.

You know, nobody becomes addicted to heroin by stepping on a heroin needle. That doesn't happen. There's always a backstory. And so in Mark's case, writing this book, he talks about his backstory of the trauma he went through and what he was using drugs for. And he used all of 'em. I mean, the chapters are separated by all the different substances he used.

And he talks about how when he needed certain things, drugs served that purpose. And I think many people think that, you know, people who are addicted to drugs enjoy the high, and that's not true at all. Maybe the first time they do, but what they really use drugs for on an addicted basis, not on a recreational basis, which is how most people use drugs.

I'm talking about people who are actually pathologically addicted. They're not getting the high. They're escaping the low. And really understanding why people get into this awful trap of addiction from that person's perspective helped me understand that there's a separate type of person in a different phase of life that gets addicted versus somebody who forms a habit.

It's just a behavior done with little or no conscious thought. And we have good habits and we have bad habits. There's no such thing as a good addiction. Addictions are persistent compulsive dependencies on behaviors or substances that harm the user. There's always harm implied, and so it's really a different type of situation that a person might find themselves in.


[00:21:24] Absolutely. And it helped you sort of differentiate that and explain it clearly as you are now. We were reading In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts by Dr. Gabor Maté, which is obviously a deep dive into that world of addiction and helped us understand that more.

And so you chose the path of focusing then on non-addicted, the non-addicted space of distraction. Where did you go next with your reading?

And I think this is where we overlap with a book that we read at Rebel Book Club called The Power of Habit. You started going deep into the behavior science world?


[00:22:00] Yeah, so The Power of Habits, I think I actually read before Memoirs of an Addicted Brain. And The Power of Habits really influenced me in that it was such an engaging read. I think Charles Duhigg is an amazing author. He comes from a journalism background, and I really admire how Duhigg can take scientific topics and research and write about them for the rest of us.

Yeah, because it's very difficult, right, to read these boring academic papers that no one reads. Half the studies are just crappy studies that don't deserve to be known by the public. And the other half are well-done studies. And sometimes they have interesting things to report, and oftentimes they don't have anything interesting to report.

But going through all those studies and picking out the nuance and separating the wheat from the chaff is not easy. It takes a lot of time. And that's something that's kind of an archetype I've used writing my books. Each of my books have over 30 pages of citations to peer-reviewed studies in the back.

And I think I kind of learned that technique, in part, from Duhigg. And I remember thinking as I was reading The Power of Habit about how impactful habits can be. And I think that was the direct springboard to ask myself, "Well, why can't we use The Power of Habits in product design?"

And I was looking for, "Hey, where's the book on how to build habit-forming products?" Because The Power of Habit is really about you as an individual. How can you build habits in your own life? Very interesting. Very useful. But it doesn't translate into a business application. It's about personal life goal habits, not habit-forming products. And so the subtitle of Hooked is "How to Build Habit-Forming Products." I mean, that's exactly what the promise of the book is, exactly in the subtitle. It's a how-to guide.

And I think there are some parts in the Duhigg book that I think are directly translatable, but there's a lot that needed expanding upon.

And so, Hooked is really for people who are making products to be habit-forming. And that was, I think, a powerful inspiration to dive deeper into that topic. And I wrote the book, frankly, because I couldn't find such a book. I wrote it for myself more than anyone else.


[00:24:25] Well, it's good to hear that entrepreneurial instinct as an author, and it works really well from a Rebel Book Club point of view. It works really well as a sequel to The Power of Habit, which we read a few years ago. Hooked does, um, it builds off it well.

And the other thing that we really appreciated about excellent non-fiction, which you do really well, is the synthesizing of all these reports into some real clear, condensed writing that's accessible, which Duhigg does, and you do really, really well.

So, um, it got our attention for sure. Um, just to wrap up on this, forming healthy or forming successful products through habits, can you give us an example or two of where you see this playing out in the real world?


[00:25:12] Sure. Yeah. So, uh, since I published Hooked back in 2014, I mean, every conceivable industry, it's hard for me to think of an industry that hasn't used the book. Some examples, for example, I'm very proud to be involved with a company called Kahoot!, which today is the world's largest educational software company. If you have a school-age kid, chances are your kid has used Kahoot!.

Uh, I got a call from Johann, one of the founders, uh, must have been about five years ago. And he calls me up and I do these office hours, which anyone can book on my website for 15 minutes for anyone who's read my books and has a question. And so Johann calls me up and says, "Hey, you know, I read your book Hooked, and here's my hook model for this product I'm building." And uh, it sounded like a crazy idea, but I said, "Wow, you've really, you know, you digested the book and this is a great cause, and this would be a wonderful thing to build a habit around."

Uh, "would you, would you, uh, consider having me as an angel investor?" And he let me invest in his company. And today the company's worth over 3 billion. It's publicly traded. And, uh, it's a wonderful example of using hooks for good, uh, getting kids hooked to learning. I mean, I can't think of a better way, uh, to do social good as well as, uh, you know, build a big business.

Uh, than, than to, to work in this EdTech space, which I love. Um, so that's a great product. That's a great example.


[00:26:28] Hopefully they'll start to bring in the financial literacy into their model.


[00:26:33]  I can tell them that, yeah!


[00:26:34] : that would be a full cycle of hooked, wouldn't it? Um, it must have a commercial success aside, that must be really satisfying, uh, from a, you know, author to investor to, you know, effectively, you know, having significant impact in the world.


[00:26:49] Oh, I mean, it's, it's, uh, it's amazing. I, I, I can't think of, uh, things that are more professionally satisfying and it, and I really put my money where my mouth is. I mean, I've invested in over 36, uh, companies now as an angel investor and every single one, my investment criteria is that they have to use the hook model.

That's the only kind of businesses I invest in. And out of those 36 companies, I've had six unicorns so far. So, uh, you know, company's worth over a billion dollars. So this stuff really does work and I, I really do put my money where my mouth is.


And, and for the future of, of your work and, and writing and investments and so on, where, where are you gonna, because obviously there's so many different areas that you are having impact and you can explore, but what are you giving your time to now?


[00:27:30] Yeah. You know, my, my problem is that I have so many ideas because I, I write books when I am looking for an answer. I, I don't write books when I know the answer. That's already boring, right? If I know the solution to my problem, what do I need to write a book about it for? Which I think is why a lot of people hate writing books.

You talk to a lot of authors and they'll write one book and they'll say, "Oh, I'll never wanna do that again." Whereas for me, it's, it's the best job in the world because I get paid to learn, right? I get paid to answer my own questions and, and solve my own problems and I got lots of problems, right?

There's a lot, I have lots and lots of deficiencies that I wanna fix. And so, uh, whenever I'm fascinated with a, with a problem that's on my mind, uh, the first thing I'll do is, you know, I'll talk to my friends, I'll talk to my family, I'll talk to my wife about, about a problem. If I still can't figure it out, then I'll go read people's books on it and I'll devour every book on the topic that I can find.

And if I still can't find the answer to the problem, well then I'll, I'll do some research, I'll start blogging about it, I'll start writing about it. And if, if after the writing has taken several years of, of, uh, dancing around a topic, if I say, "Wow, you know, nobody's really addressed this in a way that fixes the problem for me", then I'll write a book about it.

And that's exactly what happened with both my books. Uh, with Hooked, I couldn't find a book to teach me how to build habit-forming products. I couldn't find one that existed, so I wrote it. And then within Indistractable, same story. I, I read all these books on distraction that basically said the same thing, you know, some academics, some professor telling me to stop using Facebook and stop checking email.

That's not very useful, right? Like, thanks, stupid. Like you've got tenure. I can't stop checking email. That's not how business works these days. Um, so I wanted a practical solution and I found that the solution was much more interesting and much more empowering than just put away your cell phone.


[00:29:09] I think to nonfiction authors listening, the idea of getting paid to learn. Is a lovely reframe on like, rather than having to write something that may make money, what's the, what's top of the problem pile, uh, at the moment that you kind of like keeps getting your attention? What, what are you distracted by?


[00:29:25] Well, I think, uh, I, I wouldn't call it a distraction, but I think something I've been circling around and reading around is, is the power of beliefs. Uh, I think that there's all these very interesting effects that we have on our, uh, uh, how our beliefs affect our behaviors that I'm trying to figure out.

Um, Uh, yeah, so that's what I've been swirling around. But again, who knows if, if sometimes I'll read a book on a topic that, uh, that scratches an itch for me, and I say, oh, well, I'm not gonna write that book because it's been written beautifully already, so no need to, to rewrite it.


[00:29:56] Well, there's enough angles on that question. I'm sure there's one that hasn't been answered. The book that I enjoyed on that topic is The Power of Flags by Tim Marshall, which is obviously very prescient with what's going on in Eastern Europe right now, it's, um, you know what humans will do for symbols, essentially beliefs, right?


[00:30:12] And how they're wrapped up in these visual identities of flags. So it's, uh, it's, it's a great, it, it's like that lovely, like with hooks, you've got very clear framing upfront. Okay. Flags, I get that. And then of course it goes, it layers into that conversation around identity and belief.

Um, I just wrote that down and I'm adding it to my list.


[00:30:32]  Adding to your, to your, uh, oversized pile of reading. Um, Nir, thank you so much for being here today. I'm going to finish by asking you what's a non-fiction book that you, you've read recently that you wanna give a shine a light on, recommend people?


[00:30:49] Yeah, I'll, can I give you two or. Okay, so, uh, Rory Sutherland's Alchemy, I thought was fantastic. I'm a big fan of his, and, and he, he nailed it on Alchemy. I think it's a wonderful book.

And a book I read a while ago, but I think everyone should read is Factfulness by Hans Rosling. I think that is a, also a wonderful way to re-see the world as it really.


[00:31:13] Great Hans Rosling is who, uh, remind listeners that was the sort of crazy Swedish professor that did these interactive, uh, population demographic TED style presentations before Ted was a thing.

Um, and fact is one of those, I, I'm completely with you here, just like it's that reaffirming of the positive worldview, but based in evidence. Right. Which is exactly, and especially when, when, when we're going through dark times, it's so easy to only listen to what the media tells you.


[00:31:42] Yeah. Uh, and that's their job right? If it bleeds, it leads. So the media is all about telling you what's terrible in the world that they're never gonna stop doing that. But it doesn't mean they're giving you an accurate portrayal of the way the world really is.

So when you're feeling down, Read Factfulness and see how things are really, uh, actually getting better.


[00:31:58] Fantastic. Thank you for the clarity and optimism and all the good book recommendations Nir, it's been great to have you with us today.


[00:32:05] My pleasure. Thank you so much for having me.

Hosted by

Ben Keene, who is the Co-Founder of Rebel Book Club and curious about people’s life-changing books.

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