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0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Brigid Schulte Narrator: Tavia Gilbert Publisher: Brilliance Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Can working parents in America—or anywhere—ever find true leisure time?

According to the Leisure Studies Department at the University of Iowa, true leisure is “that place in which we realize our humanity.” If that’s true, argues Brigid Schulte, then we’re doing dangerously little realizing of our humanity. In Overwhelmed, Schulte, a staff writer for the Washington Post, asks, “Are our brains, our partners, our culture, and our bosses making it impossible for us to experience anything but ‘contaminated time’?”

Schulte first asked this question in a 2010 feature for the Washington Post Magazine: “How did researchers compile this statistic that said we were rolling in leisure—over four hours a day? Did any of us feel that we actually had downtime? Was there anything useful in their research—anything we could do?”

Overwhelmed is a map of the stresses that have ripped our leisure to shreds and a look at how to put the pieces back together. Schulte speaks to neuroscientists, sociologists, and hundreds of working parents to tease out the factors contributing to our collective sense of being overwhelmed, seeking insights, answers, and inspiration. She investigates progressive offices trying to invent a new kind of workplace; she travels across Europe to get a sense of how other countries accommodate working parents; she finds younger couples who claim to have figured out an ideal division of chores, childcare, and meaningful paid work. Overwhelmed is the story of what she found out.

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Quotes & Awards

  • Overwhelmed is a time-management book that’s not just about how to be more productive and effective—it’s about the broad and fascinating role time plays in our emotional satisfaction, our physical health, and even our notions of gender equality. The more overwhelmed you feel, the more crucial it is to take the time to read this important book.”

    Daniel H. Pink, New York Times bestselling author of Drive

  • Overwhelmed is a superb report from the front lines of the sputtering gender revolution. Brigid Schulte takes up the perennial problem of women’s ‘second shift’ with fresh energy and fascinating new data, effortlessly blending academic findings and mothers’ lived experiences, including her own often hilarious attempts to be both the perfect parent and a successful full-time journalist…Read this book!”

    Barbara Ehrenreich, New York Times bestselling author of Nickel and Dimed

  • Overwhelmed…brings a fresh perspective and needed insight into what’s too often called the problem of the work-life balance.”

    Elle

  • “Just reading the first chapter of Overwhelmed may be cathartic: as bad as it is…at least you’re not the only one…Overwhelmed is Schulte’s attempt to not merely survive but also unpack and analyze the quintessentially modern and increasingly universal experience of feeling utterly unable to cope. Putting her own crowded life (two children, thriving career) on the slab for dissection, Schulte tries to figure out how we got here and how we can get out of it.”

    Time

  • “[An] unexpectedly liberating investigation into the plague of busyness that afflicts us.”

    Washington Post

  • “Schulte takes a purely practical and secular approach to a question that philosophers and spiritual teachers have debated for centuries—how to find meaningful work, connection, and joy—but her research is thorough and her conclusions fascinating, her personal narrative is charmingly honest, and the stakes are high: the ‘good life’ pays off in ‘sustainable living, healthy populations, happy families, good business, [and] sound economies.’”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Journalist Schulte manages to take a fairly pedestrian topic, the value of leisure in modern American society, and turn it into a compelling narrative on work, play, and personal achievement…Schulte follows every lead to uncover why Americans are so determined to exhaust themselves for work and what has been lost in the process.”

    Booklist

  • “Backed by numerous examples, Schulte’s effective time-management ideas will be helpful in stamping out ambivalence and will empower readers to reclaim wasted moments, so life becomes a joyful experience rather than a mad dash from one task to the next. An eye-opening analysis of today’s hectic lifestyles coupled with valuable practical advice on how to make better use of each day.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Every parent, every caregiver, every person who feels besieged by permanent busyness, must read this book.”

    Anne-Marie Slaughter, president and CEO of the New America Foundation and author of Why Women Can’t Have It All”

  • “Why is life so insanely busy, and whatever happened to leisure time? Tavia Gilbert narrates Schulte’s provocative answers to these questions and more, inhabiting the author’s presence as the sometimes puzzled, sometimes frazzled woman seeks to understand the quandary on a personal and professional level…Gilbert’s narration makes the author’s story funny and insightful. Her pacing is also excellent, allowing the implications of Schulte’s meticulous research to sink in and inform today’s harried families.”

    AudioFile

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