Overwhelmed Book Summary - Overwhelmed Book explained in key points
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Overwhelmed summary

Brigid Schulte

Work, Love and Play When No One Has the Time

3.3 (29 ratings)
19 mins

Brief summary

'Overwhelmed' by Brigid Schulte explores the modern phenomenon of busyness and its impact on our lives. Through interviews and research, it offers insights and strategies to reclaim leisure time and live a more fulfilling life.

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    Parents are stressed, with no free time and too much to do. Mothers are especially overwhelmed.

    We all know what it’s like to feel overwhelmed. Balancing your work and your private life is hard enough even when you have no dependents, but more so if you’re a parent with mouths to feed and diapers to change.

    There’s no question that parents today are stressed, having to juggle long working hours while raising a family. This balancing act places a great deal of pressure on an individual’s already limited time.

    In one 2008 study, the Families and Work Institute asked American workers about their daily lives and found that half of the respondents felt they had too many tasks for a typical workday. Some two-thirds felt they didn’t have enough time for themselves or their spouse; and three-quarters reported they didn’t have enough time for their children.  

    This sense of being overburdened is particularly prevalent among women. Since the 1970s, the percentage of employed women has risen dramatically, which has led to circumstances where, to carve out and maintain a job that generates enough income, many mothers need to work full time.

    Another study performed in 2004 asked mothers with children under six if they could say they often had any free time. None of the women in the study said they did! Yet a lack of free time isn’t just a problem for mothers; only 5 percent of fathers queried in the study said they had any free time.

    Unsurprisingly, a lack of free time has led to high rates of stress and anxiety in the United States.

    The American Psychological Association reported in 2011 that Americans as a whole are chronically overstressed. Earlier, a 2007 study by the World Health Organization found that Americans, while living in one of the world’s richest countries, are on average the world’s most anxious people.

    So life is stressful – but is stress that big of a deal? It is, and we’ll learn why in the next blink.

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    What is Overwhelmed about?

    Overwhelmed (2014) explores how our outdated attitudes to gender, parenthood and race are making us all stressed and frantic. Author Brigid Schulte shows how such old fashioned ideas are holding us back from living happier, more fulfilled lives. Yet, it doesn’t have to be this way. There are alternative ways to live, we just need to learn how to implement them.

    Overwhelmed Review

    Overwhelmed (2014) by Brigid Schulte delves into the modern epidemic of busyness and offers strategies for creating a more balanced and fulfilling life. Here's why this book is a must-read:

    • It provides a deep exploration of the causes and consequences of overwhelm, offering valuable insights into how to regain control of our time and lives.
    • Packed with research, interviews, and personal anecdotes, the book offers a comprehensive and thought-provoking analysis of our overworked culture.
    • Its practical tips and strategies for managing time, setting boundaries, and prioritizing self-care make it an essential resource for anyone feeling overwhelmed.

    Best quote from Overwhelmed

    Stress is no more and no less than the inability to control and shape the forces that shape our lives – Neuroscientist Huda Akil, University of Michigan

    —Brigid Schulte
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    Who should read Overwhelmed?

    • Anyone who feels stressed or overwhelmed
    • Anyone who feels pressured to conform to gender stereotypes

    About the Author

    A journalist with The Washington Post, Brigid Schulte writes on work-life issues and poverty, and has closely examined the concept of work and leisure time in America, exploring the question of how we all can lead “The Good Life.” She has also written for Style and Outlook.

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    Overwhelmed FAQs 

    What is the main message of Overwhelmed?

    The main message of Overwhelmed is that modern life is filled with busyness and stress, but we have the power to reclaim our time and find balance.

    How long does it take to read Overwhelmed?

    The reading time for Overwhelmed varies depending on the reader's speed, but it typically takes several hours. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Overwhelmed a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Overwhelmed is a thought-provoking book that offers insights and solutions for managing overwhelm. It's worth reading for anyone seeking to find more balance in their lives.

    Who is the author of Overwhelmed?

    Brigid Schulte is the author of Overwhelmed.

    What to read after Overwhelmed?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Overwhelmed, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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    • The Six Disciplines of Strategic Thinking by Michael D. Watkins
    • The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss
    • And Then We Rise by Common
    • The 5 AM Club by Robin Sharma
    • The Now Habit by Neil Fiore
    • How to Eat to Change How You Drink by Brooke Scheller
    • The Self-Made Billionaire Effect by John Sviokla and Mitch Cohen
    • Limitless by Jim Kwik
    • Stress Less, Accomplish More by Emily Fletcher