Hard to Be Human

Overcoming Our 5 Cognitive Design Flaws

Hard to Be Human cover

“Cadsby expertly outlines why humans possess instinctive responses to stimuli and provides actionable tips and exercises for overcoming them … The book effectively doubles as a crash-course in philosophy … Cadsby does an excellent job summarizing and making connections … his presentation is creative and informative … A useful and highly readable book of self-discipline and reflection.”

Kirkus Reviews

“Ted Cadsby’s revealing and engaging book demonstrates that we can harness the power in our heads. A hopeful manual for actually living a better life.”

Amanda Lang, Anchor of BNN Bloomberg and bestselling author

Publisher  Dundurn Press

Publication Date  October 12, 2021

Paperback: 9781459748842 & 1459748840

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If other animals could study us the way we study them, they would be puzzled by our unique ability to inflict misery on ourselves. We expend a lot of energy replaying past anguish, anticipating future distress, and stewing in self-righteous anger. Other animals would call us out for being oddly paradoxical creates who long to be happy but who are the source of their own suffering. We worry about things we have no control over. We complain about not being understood while casting a critical eye on others. We stubbornly defend our beliefs despite contradictory evidence. Complicating all of this is our struggle to adapt to a complex world that we created.

In our defence, we haven’t yet mastered our neuron-packed brains, whose incredible complexity evolved over millennia in a very different world than today’s. The result of this evolutionary journey? Five design features that often morph into design flaws in need of fixing.

Hard to Be Human corrals insights from psychology, neuroscience, physics, and philosophy to reveal powerful strategies for the big five battles we each face in the war with our misguided, misbehaving selves. Tapping into deeply personal stories to ground the concepts in real life, Cadsby reveals how we can overcome our design flaws to be smarter, happier, and better adapted to the complexities of life in the twenty-first century.

Dundurn Press launched Hard to Be Human on October 12, 2021.
The event was managed by ZG Stories and hosted by BNN Bloomberg’s Amanda Lang, who interviewed Ted and moderated a lively participant Q&A.