50 pages 1 hour read

Mel Robbins

The 5 Second Rule: Transform your Life, Work, and Confidence with Everyday Courage

Nonfiction | Book | Adult | Published in 2017

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Rhetorical Context: The Pros and Cons of Anecdotal Evidence

The 5 Second Rule is primarily a self-help and motivational book that targets a general audience. Its main purpose is to give readers the push necessary to accomplish their goals by convincing them that the #5SecondRule is the most effective tool to get rid of their hesitation, push them toward action, and become proactive: The more people are convinced of the efficiency of the Rule, the more motivated they are to use it in their daily lives, and the higher the probability of their success. Robbins’s idea hinges upon her explaining why anyone can use the #5SecondRule, why such a simple trick works so well, and why it has such a widespread application.

Robbins uses scientific evidence and anecdotal evidence to lend credence to the Rule. She cites recent discoveries in psychology and cognitive science. Robbins explains that the Rule targets and then corrects known weaknesses of the human psyche that encourage people to choose passivity or procrastination instead of action. Robbins writes for a lay rather than scientific audience and does not attempt to explore in depth or critique the scientific theories she cites. Her main reason for citing scientific evidence is to lend weight to the effectiveness of the #5SecondRule.