Your every significant choice -- every important decision you make -- is determined by a force operating deep inside your mind: your perspective on time -- your internal, personal time zone. This is the most influential force in your life, yet you are virtually unaware of it. Once you become aware of your personal time zone, you can begin to see and manage your life in exciting new ways.
In The Time Paradox, Drs. Zimbardo and Boyd draw on thirty years of pioneering research to reveal, for the first time, how your individual time perspective shapes your life and is shaped by the world around you. Further, they demonstrate that your and every other individual's time zones interact to create national cultures, economics, and personal destinies.
You will discover what time zone you live in through Drs. Zimbardo and Boyd's revolutionary tests. Ask yourself:
Does the smell of fresh-baked cookies bring you back to your childhood?
Do you believe that nothing will ever change in your world?
Do you believe that the present encompasses all and the future and past are mere abstractions?
Do you wear a watch, balance your checkbook, and make to-do lists -- every day?
Do you believe that life on earth is merely preparation for life after death?
Do you ruminate over failed relationships?
Are you the life of every party -- always late, always laughing, and always broke?
These statements are representative of the seven most common ways people relate to time, each of which, in its extreme, creates benefits and pitfalls. The Time Paradox is a practical plan for optimizing your blend of time perspectives so you get the utmost out of every minute in your personal and professional life as well as a fascinating commentary about the power and paradoxes of time in the modern world.
No matter your time perspective, you experience these paradoxes. Only by understanding this new psychological science of time zones will you be able to overcome the mental biases that keep you too attached to the past, too focused on immediate gratification, or unhealthily obsessed with future goals. Time passes no matter what you do -- it's up to you to spend it wisely and enjoy it well. Here's how.
Philip Zimbardo, Ph.D., a professor emeritus at Stanford University and past president of the American Psychological Association, designed and narrated the award-winning PBS series Discovering Psychology. He has written more than fifty books, including the New York Times bestseller The Lucifer Effect, and lives in San Francisco.
John Boyd, Ph.D., received his doctorate in psychology from Stanford University, where he worked closely with Philip developing the Zimbardo Time Perspective Inventory. His professional experience includes director of scientific affairs at Alertness Solutions, director of research at Yahoo!, and, currently, research manager at Google. He lives in Dublin, California, with his wife, Nancy.
"If you are a decision maker, then you need to read this book. It informs about the central problem of how to discriminate between immediate rewards and future payoffs. The Time Paradox is comprehensive, admirably clear, and a delightful read." -- Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author of The Black Swan
"The Time Paradox explores a very important topic from a fresh, practical, and entertaining perspective. Since time is limited for all of us, this book is well worth your time." -- Daniel Amen, M.D., author of Change Your Brain, Change Your Life and Healing the Hardware of Your Soul
"The Time Paradox reveals how to better use your most irreplaceable resource, based on solid science and timeless wisdom." -- Martin Seligman, author of Authentic Happiness
"Informed by the world's foremost expert on the psychology of time, The Time Paradox combines solid science, compelling stories, and crisp prose to illuminate how time, like the oxygen we breathe, pervades every aspect of our lives. Reading this book will yield insights into your own motivation and behavior and help you be happier, healthier, and more successful. It will also help you understand the source of many of the world's greatest triumphs and most pressing problems -- from terrorism to homelessness, from religion to love, from the successes and failures of CEOs to those of marriages. Zimbardo and Boyd have hit a home run." -- Sonja Lyubomirsky, author of The How of Happiness
"Phil Zimbardo, a master at making complex ideas and discoveries in psychology, including his own, not only intelligible but fun and personally relevant for nonspecialists, has done it again, this time with the fascinating topic of time perspective. Bravo!" -- Walter Mischel, Ph.D., Columbia University Niven Professor of Humane Letters in Psychology