NATIONAL BESTSELLER • An award-winning psychologist reveals the hidden power of our inner voice and shows how to harness it to combat anxiety, improve physical and mental health, and deepen our relationships with others.
“A masterpiece.”—Angela Duckworth, bestselling author of Grit • Malcolm Gladwell, Susan Cain, Adam Grant, and Daniel H. Pink’s Next Big Idea Club Winter 2021 Winning Selection
One of the best new books of the year—The Washington Post, BBC, USA Today, CNN Underscored, Shape, Behavioral Scientist, PopSugar • Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, and Shelf Awareness starred reviews
Tell a stranger that you talk to yourself, and you’re likely to get written off as eccentric. But the truth is that we all have a voice in our head. When we talk to ourselves, we often hope to tap into our inner coach but find our inner critic instead. When we’re facing a tough task, our inner coach can buoy us up: Focus—you can do this. But, just as often, our inner critic sinks us entirely: I’m going to fail. They’ll all laugh at me. What’s the use?
In Chatter, acclaimed psychologist Ethan Kross explores the silent conversations we have with ourselves. Interweaving groundbreaking behavioral and brain research from his own lab with real-world case studies—from a pitcher who forgets how to pitch, to a Harvard undergrad negotiating her double life as a spy—Kross explains how these conversations shape our lives, work, and relationships. He warns that giving in to negative and disorienting self-talk—what he calls “chatter”—can tank our health, sink our moods, strain our social connections, and cause us to fold under pressure.
But the good news is that we’re already equipped with the tools we need to make our inner voice work in our favor. These tools are often hidden in plain sight—in the words we use to think about ourselves, the technologies we embrace, the diaries we keep in our drawers, the conversations we have with our loved ones, and the cultures we create in our schools and workplaces.
Brilliantly argued, expertly researched, and filled with compelling stories, Chatter gives us the power to change the most important conversation we have each day: the one we have with ourselves.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Ever wonder how baseball players can psych themselves out in the final inning or a trained actor can feel their mind go blank as they step onto the stage? In this fascinating listen, psychologist Ethan Kross explores the way we talk to ourselves inside the privacy of our own minds and the potentially staggering outcomes of that chatter. Using scientific research and relatable real-world examples, Kross explains how the things we say to ourselves can have a measurable impact on our lives—and he provides advice for guiding that internal conversation to make sure the impact is positive. For example, Kross explains how to identify negative self-talk when it happens, so that we can consciously steer our mind back in the right direction. His guidance on learning to distance yourself from your own thoughts (remember, feelings aren’t facts) is incredibly empowering, plus it feels practical and attainable. Chatter isn’t just thought-provoking—it’s thought-transforming.
While it can be a little dry at times just because there’s so much science in it, there are some really interesting takeaways from the studies the author talks about! With a read if this is a topic that interests you.
Tools chapter is the most critical chapter