Do Nothing: How to Break Away from Overworking, Overdoing, and Underliving by Celeste Headlee

I have been thinking more about the need to rest and take time off especially after a year of pandemic and lockdowns. I am extremely grateful to have weathered the pandemic relatively unscathed, but like many others, the restrictions and limitations did affect my mental health. Furthermore, my personal life has had been affected by the ill health and death of people very close to me. So yes, I have been thinking more about doing nothing and taking time off. I hope to do so more this summer too.

As someone who has always wanted to retire with books and crafts and food, this book is preaching to the choir. Most of the book is about the history of how western society views work and busyness. It has some economic and religious history. I did not learn anything new from the book. The last third offered some tips on how to take a break. I welcomed the reminders but I wish there was more of them.

All in all, an ok book for me. It was nice to read in a time where I have been thinking of it. It did not change my world view. I do think that the pandemic and recent economic times has recently taught us how destructive constant busyness or claims of busyness can be. It would be better if everyone didn’t find leisure so unreachable or useless.

Read June 5-8, 2021.

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