How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life

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Pub Date 10 Sep 2019 | Archive Date 07 Feb 2022

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**National Bestseller**

**As heard on 200+ podcasts**

**Featured in The New York Times, CNBC, NBC, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal,  Economist, and on**

You sit down at your desk to work on an important project, but a notification on your phone interrupts your morning. Later, as you’re about to get back to work, a colleague taps you on the shoulder to chat. At home, screens get in the way of quality time with your family. Another day goes by, and once again, your most important personal and professional goals are put on hold.

This new year, let Nir Eyal help you break the cycle to be your most productive self and achieve your personal and professional goals.

What would be possible if you followed through on your best intentions? What could you accomplish if you could stay focused and overcome distractions? What if you had the power to become “indistractable?”

International bestselling author, former Stanford lecturer, and behavioral design expert, Nir Eyal, wrote Silicon Valley’s handbook for making technology habit-forming. Five years after publishing Hooked, Eyal reveals distraction’s Achilles’ heel in his groundbreaking new book.

In Indistractable, Eyal reveals the hidden psychology driving us to distraction. He describes why solving the problem is not as simple as swearing off our devices: Abstinence is impractical and often makes us want more.

Eyal lays bare the secret of finally doing what you say you will do with a four-step, research-backed model. Indistractable reveals the key to getting the best out of technology, without letting it get the best of us.

Inside, Eyal overturns conventional wisdom and reveals:

- Why distraction at work is a symptom of a dysfunctional company culture—and how to fix it What really drives human behavior and why “time management is pain management”

- Why your relationships (and your sex life) depend on you becoming indistractable

- How to raise indistractable children in an increasingly distracting world

Empowering and optimistic, Indistractable provides practical, novel techniques to control your time and attention—helping you live the life you really want.

**National Bestseller**

**As heard on 200+ podcasts**

**Featured in The New York Times, CNBC, NBC, Entrepreneur, Fast Company, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal,  Economist, and on**

You sit down...

A Note From the Publisher

This book is only available in PDF format at this time. It has not been fully proofed and is available for promotional use only.

Please note that we will upload .epub and .mobi files when available later this summer.

This book is only available in PDF format at this time. It has not been fully proofed and is available for promotional use only.

Please note that we will upload .epub and .mobi files when...

Advance Praise

"Being indistractable is the essential skill for our time. Skip this book at your peril!" - Greg McKeown, author of Essentialism

"This is such an important book. Indistractable is the best guide I've read for reclaiming our attention, our focus, and our lives." - Arianna Huffington, Founder & CEO, Thrive Global and Founder, The Huffington Post

"Indistractable is the most practical and realistic approach to balancing technology with well-being. A must-read for anyone with a smartphone." - Mark Manson, author of The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

"This book is full of insights, stories, cutting-edge research and--most helpful--concrete, manageable strategies for becoming indistractable." - Gretchen Rubin author of The Happiness Project

"Indistractable is a master class in understanding the root cause of distraction. Recommended for anyone looking to do more deep work." - Cal Newport, author of Deep Work

"An essential book for anyone trying to think, work, or live better." - Ryan Holiday, author of The Obstacle Is the Way and Ego Is the Enemy

"Indistractable helped me realize technology was not the real reason I got distracted and struggled to get things done. It changed how I manage every part of my day and I cannot recommend it highly enough. Everybody should read this book!" - Steve Kamb, founder of Nerd Fitness and author of Level Up Your Life

"Being indistractable is the essential skill for our time. Skip this book at your peril!" - Greg McKeown, author of Essentialism

"This is such an important book. Indistractable is the best guide...

Available Editions

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ISBN 9781948836531
PRICE $26.95 (USD)

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Featured Reviews

Intractable is a interesting book with valid points. Well written and interesting information about how we are so distracted.

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This is a very interesting book, and very relevant to our lifestyles today. The most important thought is that our devices are not totally to blame for our lack of focus and how we are easily distracted. We need to look beneath. The question of 'What are we being distracted from' is also key. I enjoyed the book very much because it is approaching new areas and the aim is to be instrumental in making todays advanced devices work for us and not allowing ourselves to be at their mercy. Basically it is not the devices that need to change it is the way we use them. The only niggle is that the book is written in a very academic style with constant references to quotes and surveys, and it felt a little bit like a dissertation. I was also a bit uncomfortable with the reliance on other apps to control our use of devices, just decide when you are not going to use it and switch it off. We need to get back using the biggest and best app, the grey matter between our ears.. But overall a brilliant book that everyone should read and start talking about.

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Have you ever gone out with friends or family and there is that one guy who is constantly checking out of the conversation and checking into his phone? Super annoying, right? Well, I'm that guy. I didn't realize what it was called until I read Nir Eyal's book but I am a 'phubber' (phone snubber).

As a real estate broker, coach, and father of 6 boys, I am always being distracted by something. I would get anxious every time the phone chirped or beeped or pinged. Was it a client emergency, do my kids need me ... and most of the time it was nothing but a distraction.

Wow! Practical advice galore in this one. I am already putting it to use and I am beginning to find peace. Spending more time following our life values in traction and being aware of the triggers that pull us away from what's important can lead to a more productive and peaceful life. Nir uses case studies that will challenge the way you have always thought of things and open your mind to other options.

I especially enjoyed the section he put in the book on how to help our children become less distracted. As a father concerned with screen time and non-productive behaviors, there were some absolute gems here. Not surprisingly, I discovered where the problem lies. It's not the screen, it's the parenting and there are some brilliant ideas on how to achieve a better outcome.

Now to put this all into practice. Don't miss this one.

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The author believes that actions are caused either by internal or external triggers. These triggers have the ability to steer you right (traction) or wrong (distraction), the model is how the book is structured. The book contains two additional sections - managing distractions at the workplace and managing distraction with children.

The ideas presented in each part of the book were well researched. There was nothing extraordinary about any of the stuff mentioned in any of the parts. Yet, the book was well-structured and that made reading an easy exercise. The ideas mentioned definitely have merit. My favorite part was the part on managing distractions by making pacts. The ideas of effort pact and money pact hold promise for me.

Overall, I think I would benefit from a reread and making a list of things that I can try apart from the pacts.

I received a free copy of the book from NetGalley.

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Today nobody will deny that we have become overloaded with data to toxic levels and we consume so much trash of data daily, which we will never use.
Continuous distractions lead to reduced productivity, creativity and family life
We miss so much in an effort to avoid missing out on alleged important stuff.
Author covers wide range of topics and examples. Your kid and you, you and your spice, first hour of your office, teenager, gamer and children.
He describes his theory about saving oneself from distractions. Author emphasises that digital distractions are not the only distractions. There are whole lot of other triggers and distractions.
Putting your cellphone away will not solve the problems. Author specifically focuses on management of smartphone.
There are science experiments and examples from applied psychology.
I liked this book because of its simplicity and practical knowledge.
Looking forward to read , hooked also written by same author.
Thanks netgalley and publisher for review copy.

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NDISTRACTABLE by Nir Eyal with Julie Li is subtitled "How to Control Your Attention and Choose your Life." We all need this, right? As I am typing, my phone is alerting me to a text and there are plenty of other distractions around, too. There is a certain irony in that Eyal is author of the internationally best-selling book titled Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products, although he was primarily advocating for user friendly and easy to navigate products in that text. Having also lectured at Stanford's Graduate School of Business, Eyal is obviously knowledge-able about the blending of technology, psychology, and business. In INDISTRACTABLE he advocates using four key strategies and addresses issues related to productivity, our habits/values and triggers, both internal and external. The structure of the book is very helpful – each of the roughly three dozen chapters has a boxed "remember this" section, plus, there is a summary list of chapter takeaways as well as templates for a scheduling tool and distraction tracker and notes. Eyal is a marketer at heart, too; he provides diagrams, acknowledges the many contributors who helped crowd-edit the book, and includes a book discussion guide. Portions of this text could be shared and discussed in advisory [homeroom] and would likely be of interest to Psych students (e.g., when exploring motivation or instant gratification), but Eyal's writing is often geared to older tech users as evidenced by sections on stakeholders at work, email, and company culture, for example. Readers can also find additional resources, download materials, and get updates from

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“Being Indistractable means striving to do what you say you will do.”

The author presents four steps that fight the major time sucks in your life and how you deal with them. First, there are concrete methods to master internal triggers that distract from the task you should be doing. The author then states how to make time in your busy schedule for tasks that are a better match to your values. Next up are ways to avoid external triggers that lead to distraction. Finally, ways to prevent distraction are analyzed. There are several chapters on how to encourage your children to be indistractable too.

I see a lot of my behaviors in this book. Even though I blame my pesky co-workers for my lack of focus, many of my problems are actually internal. I get bored easily. I can envision using the tips in this book, essentially gamifying my mundane tasks, will help me focus more. I’ve been setting Alexa’s timer for ten minutes to see if I really need to do something different as the book suggests. Often the desire for doing something else vanishes. The book calls this “surfing the wave” and it has worked for me. Reading Indistractable is a great use of your time so you can schedule time for what matters most to you. 5 stars!

Thanks to BenBella Books and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.

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I got a digital preview copy of this book via NetGalley. This book is all about how to handle distractions that are hurled at us from all directions.

What is the book about:

In his previous book - Hooked, Nir shared the framework that could be used to build habit forming products and in this book he shares strategies for consumers to avoid getting sucked into the habit forming products that were built using the framework he shared in his previous work :-)

He is candid in sharing that he found himself constantly distracted by all the things that are coming at him, including products that designed habits among their consumers, not for the benefit of the consumers but for their own benefits.      

Ease of reading:

The book is an easy read. As a matter of fact, the book seems to be like a series of blog posts, all centered around  the theme of avoiding distractions so that we can do the work that we are meant to do or want to do.

You can start from wherever you want and stop at the end of the chapter. This makes the book an easy read and available even to those who think that they can’t read a full book.

What I loved about the book:

He has tried to cover all aspects of distractions – in personal life, in professional life and has some very practical strategies that we could put in place that can help us lead a distraction free life.

Some of these strategies are well known, like, remove all notifications on your mobile phone, remove all social media apps from the phone and only access them on your PC or laptop or make it difficult for you to reach your phone by keeping it within a closed drawer or 10 meters away or in a different room.

Some of the strategies are novel, like, deciding what you will do at certain times with certain people (friends or family) so that when the time comes, we don’t simply allow the time to pass but are intentional about what gets done. The whole concept of scheduling time for important relationships & planning for the time we spend together ahead of time is the best way to make the time together more enjoyable and fruitful.     

Another interesting idea he shares comes from a hospital case study. HE says that in most modern workplaces (open offices), people do not realise if and when someone is trying to engage in deep work so everyone interrupts everyone else. What if we could clearly indicate to people walking around that we are in deep work mode and would like to be left alone by having a big sign that says exactly that.

He shares a lot of anecdotes, both from his personal life and also from the academic research which makes the book infinitely a better read than a how to manual, that it actually is.  

What would I have done differently:

I don’t think that I would have done anything differently with this book. This seems to be as perfect, as it can get.

In Conclusion:

— This is a <<5>> star book for me. One of the few books that is not only interesting to read but also of infinitely practical when put in practice. Nir has another bestseller in this book.

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What you put in your head is what you work on and what you do. Getting a copy of indistractable was a good healthy boost which I was craving to control my daily distractions. The book is composed of short and concise steps to follow which will help you be more productive and have better management and sense of your time. Yes the advice is something which we have read and listened on many blogs/shows but the authorb with practical advice and examples based on his own life has provided an excellent guide to execute these. Would recommend this book for those who are serious to bring about a major change in their hectic life.

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We are all easily distracted these days. There are far too many things competing for our attention. On a daily basis, we are bombarded with images, sounds, and more. Everything seems to be about getting our eyeballs focused on whatever it is that’s being promoted at the moment. It’s enough to drive us to distraction. Literally.

In the book, Indistractable, author Nir Eyal shows us some techniques to help us avoid the pitfall of distraction in our daily lives. These techniques can be applied just about everywhere and will serve to help us focus and become more aware of the countless ways that advertisers and social media try to distract us.

It’s not just devices and technology that provide distraction though. Things come up in daily life that can distract us from what we really want to accomplish. This book provides a whole bunch of great techniques that you can use every day to take back your time.

One of my favorites is the way the author’s wife lets others know that she needs to focus and is being indistractable. She has a special tiara that she can wear on her head when she needs to have time to focus on whatever she needs to get done. Her family knows this particular headgear means that they need to leave her alone so that she is not distracted and can get stuff done. There is a photo in the book that I found very memorable of her sitting at her computer wearing the tiara, which she got on Amazon and has lights on it to make it noticeable to others. I love this idea! You tell your family that, when you wear this particular hat or tiara or whatever, that this is your time to focus and they need to not disturb you! Simple and effective! And it can work everywhere! Why not do the same with co-workers?

There’s also a card that the author created that you can place in a visible location that lets your co-workers know that you’d like not to be disturbed. Cool idea!

It’s techniques like these that you will find throughout the book. The author covers many different life situations when we find ourselves distracted and shows how to overcome them. I’ve got to start using some of these ideas. They are excellent.

He advises us to make certain times to do things like check email. I know I often find myself checking emails every 20 minutes or so during the day. The author makes the point that none of the emails we get are really such high priority that they need to be dealt with right away. Often, when I get an email and go to answer it or resolve the issue, this takes me away from other work tasks. And then it takes a long time to get back to what I was doing. So, the author’s point is a good one. If you set aside one or two times during the day when you will deal just with emails, that can save you a lot of time and prevent distraction. If you just do emails during the last hour of the day, that will mean the rest of your time can be productively used to get other things done. It makes sense.

In summary, I loved all the ideas in this book. I know I am not alone in being so easily distracted by everyday things. If we all put to use the excellent techniques shown in this book, we’d be more productive and have more free time too. I highly recommend you read this book. We can all benefit from becoming indistractable!

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As someone living today, I can’t deny the relevance of this book in my life. With so many information, choices, and interesting things going on in this world, it really makes sense for me to take charge of my time; otherwise I will be sucked in to bottomless pit of irrelevance.

This book by Nir Eyal speaks to the truth of what’s happening now and how we can deal with it. This book is well-written. The author was able to balance academic as well everyday people’s language.

There are tons of citations as well. This means that the concepts in this book are based not just in few studies but meta-analyses of those.

The chapter sizes are short enough for the reader to spend time on without losing the chunk of ideas presented. This makes the book suitable to those busy persons who wanted to feel that they get a lot of useful information in short span of time.

And of course I like the concept. My favorite idea in this book is a distraction can be anything; even those that are deemed important. For example, readers like me know the importance of reading. It is not a bad habit. However, it could be a distraction if it takes away our time to exercise or sleep (which happens quite a lot).

What’s important is to do things according to my values and plan to use my time well. If I plan to spend 5 minutes in Facebook to say hello or greet my friends, it is not a distraction. It is time well spent since I value my relationship with my ling time friends.

Readers will learn more so go ahead and enjoy this book.

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In Indistracable by Nir Eyal we can understand, on a deeper level, why we allow things to distract us from accomplishing more important goals. This book helps us potentially identify our “triggers,” which can keep us from finishing projects or tasks. One thing that resonated with me was that technology wasn't necessarily the reason why many of us are so distracted. I think this is key for a lot of people. We may automatically think it's because of our phones and tablets. But, that may not be the case at all. Some of us keep telling ourselves we’ll start or finish a certain project, but never actually do. Why? Well, that is the question this book will try to help you answer.

The chapters on scheduling was very informative in regards to making time for the important things and on keeping healthy relationships. The Indistracable model has four main parts: Mastering Internal Triggers, Making Time for Traction, Hack Back External Triggers, and Prevent Distraction with Pacts. Eyal goes into depth in each of these parts. He also talks about how to make your workplace indistracable, as well as your children!

Overall, a great resource on time and life management. Backed by plenty of research, this book is not only good for adults, but for teenagers too! If you find yourself easily distracted, and it is keeping you from accomplishing your goals then this book is a must read! Recommended for ages 14 and up!

*A DRC was given for an honest review

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This is an absolutely must read and then must follow up with the author’s website because you just know the gold will continue there.

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In a world filled with an ever increasing number of distractions, Nir Eyal comes to the rescue with a book full of well researched and thoroughly tested ideas to help you choose how to spend your time wisely.

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According to Nir Eyal in his new book Indistractable, success is doing what you want to do, even if it's watching a video or taking a nap. It's getting off track from our goals that makes us unsuccessful.

Eyal's new book is to help us stay on track to do what we plan. Eyal says don't blame technology or our phones for distracting us from what we really want to do because people have always found ways to be distracted. If not technology, it's something else. The problem isn't the medium of distraction (although some things are more tempting than others); the problem is ourselves.

"Traction helps us accomplish goals; distraction leads us away from them."

Eyal presents The Indistractable Model, four steps to become indistractable:


Identify and manage the psychological discomfort that leads you off track. The drive to relieve discomfort is the root cause of our behavior; everything else is a proximate cause. Time management is pain management.

2. Make time for TRACTION

Turn your values into time. You actually perform better under constraints because limitations give you a structure. Book 15 minutes on your schedule every week to reflect and refine your calendar. You can't call something a distraction unless you know what it is distracting you from.


Remove external triggers to keep distractions out. Is this trigger serving you, or are you serving it? Many things become irrelevant when you give them a little time to breathe. Even desktop clutter takes a heavy psychological toll on your attention.

4. Prevent DISTRACTION with pacts

Being indistractable not only requires keeping distraction out. It also necessitates keeping yourself in. Rein yourself in with the ancient practice of precommitment, but only after applying the first three steps. Make unwanted behaviors more difficult to do.

Eyal presents both psychological theories as well as practical tips for how to become indistractable in a variety of situations, such as in the workplace, among friends, in intimate relationships, with children, even in meetings and group chats.

Some of the advice you may have heard before, but other parts are new or at least rebranded. He helps you rethink what is distracting you and how you can overcome it.

Because how you control your attention is how you choose your life. Reading this book is a great place to start.

My thanks to Net Galley for the review copy of this book

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This book has been one of the best books on productivity that I have read this year. Every tips and suggestion are backed with book has been one of the best books on productivity that I have read this year. Every tips and suggestion are backed with case studies and proper explanation. The other thing about the book was the presentation. It was more like reading an essay with flowcharts and quotes. As I am a student myself I am using some of the methods like 10mins rule, time blocking, productivity skills I can say that it has drastically improved my performance.

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