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5 books to get you over the stress of not doing enough

These reads will help you get over what social psychologists describe as an inability to rest, that anxious feeling that you should constantly be doing something productive.

5 books to get you over the stress of not doing enough
[Photo: Lina Kivaka/Pexels]

Have you ever heard of “idleness aversion”? It’s a term that social psychologists use to describe an inability to rest, an anxious feeling that you should constantly be doing something productive.

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We have all experienced idleness aversion at one time or another. And if for you, that time is right now, we have a few reading recommendations that will help you kick back, relax, and enjoy being idle.

Download the Next Big Idea App for “Book Bite” summaries of hundreds of new nonfiction books like these.

I Didn’t Do the Thing Today: Letting Go of Productivity Guilt

By Madeleine Dore

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An inspiring call to take productivity off its pedestal; by dismantling our comparison to others, aspirational routines, and the unrealistic notions of what can be done in a day, we can finally embrace the joyful messiness and unpredictability of life. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Madeleine Dore, in the Next Big Idea App

The End of Burnout: Why Work Drains Us and How to Build Better Lives

By Jonathan Malesic

Going beyond the how and why of burnout, a former tenured professor combines academic methods and first-person experience to propose new ways for resisting our cultural obsession with work and transforming our vision of human flourishing. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Jonathan Malesic, in the Next Big Idea App

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Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention—and How to Think Deeply Again

By Johann Hari

Our ability to pay attention is collapsing. From the New York Times bestselling author of Chasing the Scream and Lost Connections comes a groundbreaking examination of why this is happening—and how to get our attention back. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Johann Hari, in the Next Big Idea App

Good Anxiety: Harnessing the Power of the Most Misunderstood Emotion

By Wendy Suzuki

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Drawing on her own intimate struggles and based on cutting-edge research, a world-renowned neuroscientist has developed an inspiring guidebook for managing unwarranted anxiety and turning it into a powerful asset. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Wendy Suzuki, in the Next Big Idea App

The Power of Fun: How to Feel Alive Again

By Catherine Price

If you’re not having fun, you’re not fully living. The author of How to Break Up with Your Phone makes the case that, far from being frivolous, fun is actually critical to our well-being—and shows us how to have more of it. Listen to our Book Bite summary, read by author Catherine Price, in the Next Big Idea App

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This article originally appeared in Next Big Idea Club magazine and is reprinted with permission.


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