24 Extraordinary Quotes from Blink

Malcolm Gladwell is a bestselling author, journalist, and speaker. Writing for the New Yorker since 1996, he has written five books reaching the New York Times Bestseller List each time. Ranked as one of Time’s 100 more influential people. Gladwell has been issued several honorary degrees in his life. Here is a look at some of the best quotes from Malcolm Gladwell’s novel, ‘Blink.’

“Arousal leaves us mind-blind.”

“Being able to act intelligently and instinctively in the moment is possible only after a long and rigorous of education and experience.”

“But in the end it comes down to a matter of respect, and the simplest way that respect is communicated is through tone of voice, and the most corrosive tone of voice that a doctor can assume is a dominant tone.”

“Did they know why they knew? Not at all. But the Knew.”

“Extreme visual clarity, tunnel vision, diminished sound, and the sense that time is slowing down. this is how the human body reacts to extreme stress.”


“If we are to learn to improve the quality of the decisions we make, we need to accept the mysterious nature of our snap judgments.”

“If we can control the environment in which rapid cognition takes place, then we can control rapid cognition.”

“In the act of tearing something apart, you lose its meaning.”

“Insight is not a lightbulb that goes off inside our heads. It is a flickering candle that can easily be snuffed out.”

“It is quite possible for people who have never met us and who have spent only twenty minutes thinking about us to come to a better understanding of who we are than people who have known us for years.”

“It is the new and different that is always most vulnerable to market research”

“It would be interesting to find out what goes on in that moment when someone looks at you and comes to all sorts of conclusions.”

“Often a sign of expertise is noticing what doesn’t happen.”

“The face is not a secondary billboard for our internal feelings. It is an equal partner in the emotional process.”

“The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding. We are swimming in the former. We are desperately lacking in the latter.”

“The real me isn’t the person I describe, no the real me is the me revealed by my actions.”

“The third and most important task of this book is to convince you that our snap judgments and first impressions can be educated and controlled. Just as we can teach ourselves to think logically and deliberately, we can also teach ourselves to make better snap judgments. The power of knowing, in that first two seconds, is not a gift given magically to a fortunate few. It is an ability that we can all cultivate for ourselves.”

“There can be as much value in the blink of an eye as in months of rational analysis”

“Truly successful decision making relies on a balance between deliberate and instinctive thinking.”

“We believe that we are always better off gathering as much information as possible and spending as much time as possible in deliberation. The first task of Blink is to convince you of a simple fact: decisions made very quickly can be every bit as good as decisions made cautiously and deliberately.”

“We have, as human beings, a storytelling problem. We’re a bit too quick to come up with explanations for things we don’t really have an explanation for.”

“We learn by example and by direct experience because there are real limits to the adequacy of verbal instruction.”

“When we become expert in something, our tastes grow more esoteric and complex.”

“You can learn as much – or more – from one glance at a private space as you can from hours of exposure to a public face.”

Check out the following video for an interview with best selling author Malcolm Gladwell as he discusses his lessons learned from his latest book. Gladwell highlights how to succeed as an underdog and make it to the finish line.

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