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Mental Efficiency

Arnold Bennett

Book Overview: 

In this light-hearted yet thought-provoking collection of articles, Bennett offers his thoughts on exercising your mind, organizing your life, marriage, books and happiness, and other pocket philosophies. The book stands the test of time and is still relevant and amusing.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .For example (and I give this merely as an example), you might say to yourself: "Within one month from this date I will read twice Herbert Spencer's little book on 'Education'—sixpence—and will make notes in pencil inside the back cover of the things that particularly strike me." You remark that that is nothing, that you can do it "on your head," and so on. Well, do it. When it is done you will at any rate possess the satisfaction of having resolved to do something and having done it. Your mind will have gained tone and healthy pride. You will be even justified in setting yourself some kind of a simple programme to extend over three months. And you will have acquired some general principles by the light of which to construct the programme. But best of all, you will have avoided failure, that dangerous wound.

[23]The second possible cause of previous failure was the disintegrating effect on the will-power of the ironic, superior smile of friends. Whene. . . Read More

Community Reviews

My mom and I have a long tradition of listening to books on tape (well, really I guess they were CD’s mostly) when we would travel. When Minnie and I were driving back from Olympia this weekend, we continued this tradition. We listened to Mental efficiency, and other hints to men and women by Arnold B...more

BOOKSALE. A book store's name here in the Philippines which is the potent marriage of two words most capable of bringing joy to people who love to read: "book" and "sale."

"Sale" as in cheap. Very cheap. Pocketbooks you can buy here at half a dollar (US, in its peso equivalent); paperb...more

This guy is a genius, great analysis, good advice and astounding way of conversation between the author and the reader!
He talked about various topics, psychology, a little bit of philosophy, and the will of power and its relation with sincere desire.

Some quotes:

Most...more

A collection of essays loosely connected by a theme of living well. Some better than others of course.

The importance of pay attention to exercising the brain just as much as we preen the body.

Another excellent book by Arnold Bennett. It's a candid collection of Bennett's thoughts on Success, Marriage, Mental Efficiency, buying/not buying books and many more burning topics of life. Again a short read, but very pragmatic.

I have the 1911 edition.
I read this as a youngster in Junior High,
along with 'How to Live on 24 Hours a Day' 1910 edition
and 'Self And Self-Management' 1918 edition.
I referred back to them all the way through college.
They helped me stay 'on track' and achieve.

Bennett wrote a number of self-help books in this vein, and all are in my opinion worth reading or listening to, at least the handful I've tried so far. He was probably a cantankerous, moody complainer at least some of the time. And he could be highly opinionated, e.g. in his aversion to Benjamin...more

This is a fun read. Not only is it a charming look into the time period in England, much of the advice, with slight modifications, still applies today. The chapter on books could easily be translated to current arguments about ereaders vs physical books. The argument about the cult of the body an...more

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