The Four Tendencies: The Indispensable Personality Profiles That Reveal How to Make Your Life Better (and Other People’s Lives Better, Too) by Gretchen Rubin

The Four Tendencies: The Indispensable Personality Profiles That Reveal How to Make Your Life Better (and Other People's Lives Better, Too)The Four Tendencies: The Indispensable Personality Profiles That Reveal How to Make Your Life Better (and Other People’s Lives Better, Too) by Gretchen Rubin
Published by Harmony

Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project and Better Than Before, habits and happiness guru, is back with another book – this time focusing on the framework that she developed called The Four Tendencies. The basic idea is that these four types of people respond to expectations differently, and figuring out your tendency is a key piece in mastering your ability to create new habits and have a happy, productive life.

I’m not sure that writing a whole book about the four tendencies was Rubin’s best idea. I was interested in this subject when I first read about it in Better Than Before, and it certainly explains a lot about people’s behavior and how different people respond differently to expectations, but this book was a bit overkill for me. I’m just not sure that I need to know every single way each tendency can affect every single other tendency, how to “deal” with each tendency in every area of life, or which tendencies pair the best with others in romantic relationships, friendships, or as coworkers.

I listened to the audio of The Four Tendencies and it was pretty good. Rubin narrates it herself, and having listened to some of her podcast episodes I was familiar with her voice. She is a good speaker and I can see why she has been successful at speaking engagements all across the country.

The Four Tendencies would be a good choice for those who are huge fans of Gretchen Rubin’s work in happiness and habits, and I did find parts of it interesting. However, I felt it was a bit TOO much about these tendencies and I am not sure that writing an entire book about this subject was totally necessary. Recommended for fans of Gretchen Rubin; others, not so much.

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4 thoughts on “The Four Tendencies: The Indispensable Personality Profiles That Reveal How to Make Your Life Better (and Other People’s Lives Better, Too) by Gretchen Rubin

  1. I feel like something like this has been done so many times in so many different ways that for her to do something similar is overkill. I’ll stick the million and one ways I have already looked at four tendencies.

  2. I loved The Happiness Project – it’s actually what inspired me to start blogging, reading about Gretchen’s blog. But even Better Than Before wasn’t my favorite, since the four tendencies system is something Gretchen completely made up, with now studies or statistics to back it up. Parts of the idea do match my own experiences, but I don’t think that’s enough I need to read another book exclusively on that topic, especially hearing that the level of detail was more than you were interested in.

    1. I so agree about The Happiness Project. That book was huge for me in making small changes that truly made a difference in my life overall. I would definitely recommend skipping this one if you weren’t that excited about Better Than Before. I do like the idea of these tendencies but having a general understanding of them is plenty good enough, reading this book is not at all needed.

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