website statistics Laziness Does Not Exist - PDF Books Online
Hot Best Seller

Laziness Does Not Exist

Availability: Ready to download

From social psychologist Dr. Devon Price, a fascinating and thorough examination of what they call the “laziness lie”—which falsely tells us we are not working or learning hard enough—filled with practical and accessible advice for overcoming society’s pressure to “do more.” Extra-curricular activities. Honors classes. 60-hour work weeks. Side hustles. Like many Americans From social psychologist Dr. Devon Price, a fascinating and thorough examination of what they call the “laziness lie”—which falsely tells us we are not working or learning hard enough—filled with practical and accessible advice for overcoming society’s pressure to “do more.” Extra-curricular activities. Honors classes. 60-hour work weeks. Side hustles. Like many Americans, Dr. Devon Price believed that productivity was the best way to measure self-worth. Price was an overachiever from the start, graduating from both college and graduate school early, but that success came at a cost. After Price was diagnosed with a severe case of anemia and heart complications from overexertion, they were forced to examine the darker side of all this productivity. Laziness Does Not Exist explores the psychological underpinnings of the “laziness lie,” including its origins from the Puritans and how it has continued to proliferate as digital work tools have blurred the boundaries between work and life. Using in-depth research, Price explains that people today do far more work than nearly any other humans in history yet most of us often still feel we are not doing enough. Dr. Price offers science-based reassurances that productivity does not determine a person’s worth and suggests that the solution to problems of overwork and stress lie in resisting the pressure to do more and instead learn to embrace doing enough. Featuring interviews with researchers, consultants, and experiences from real people drowning in too much work, Laziness Does Not Exist encourages us to let go of guilt and become more attuned to our own limitations and needs and resist the pressure to meet outdated societal expectations.


Compare

From social psychologist Dr. Devon Price, a fascinating and thorough examination of what they call the “laziness lie”—which falsely tells us we are not working or learning hard enough—filled with practical and accessible advice for overcoming society’s pressure to “do more.” Extra-curricular activities. Honors classes. 60-hour work weeks. Side hustles. Like many Americans From social psychologist Dr. Devon Price, a fascinating and thorough examination of what they call the “laziness lie”—which falsely tells us we are not working or learning hard enough—filled with practical and accessible advice for overcoming society’s pressure to “do more.” Extra-curricular activities. Honors classes. 60-hour work weeks. Side hustles. Like many Americans, Dr. Devon Price believed that productivity was the best way to measure self-worth. Price was an overachiever from the start, graduating from both college and graduate school early, but that success came at a cost. After Price was diagnosed with a severe case of anemia and heart complications from overexertion, they were forced to examine the darker side of all this productivity. Laziness Does Not Exist explores the psychological underpinnings of the “laziness lie,” including its origins from the Puritans and how it has continued to proliferate as digital work tools have blurred the boundaries between work and life. Using in-depth research, Price explains that people today do far more work than nearly any other humans in history yet most of us often still feel we are not doing enough. Dr. Price offers science-based reassurances that productivity does not determine a person’s worth and suggests that the solution to problems of overwork and stress lie in resisting the pressure to do more and instead learn to embrace doing enough. Featuring interviews with researchers, consultants, and experiences from real people drowning in too much work, Laziness Does Not Exist encourages us to let go of guilt and become more attuned to our own limitations and needs and resist the pressure to meet outdated societal expectations.

30 review for Laziness Does Not Exist

  1. 5 out of 5

    Sheena

    Laziness Does Not Exist was requested and read by me just from the title alone. Devon Price exceeded my expectations and was the justification I needed when feeling lazy about myself. A lot of my personal goals haven’t been fulfilled, especially lately with a pandemic going on. “We expect ourselves to achieve at a superhuman level, and when we fail to do so, we chastise ourselves for being lazy”. The book really resonates with me because it made me feel validated and seen. There were so many poi Laziness Does Not Exist was requested and read by me just from the title alone. Devon Price exceeded my expectations and was the justification I needed when feeling lazy about myself. A lot of my personal goals haven’t been fulfilled, especially lately with a pandemic going on. “We expect ourselves to achieve at a superhuman level, and when we fail to do so, we chastise ourselves for being lazy”. The book really resonates with me because it made me feel validated and seen. There were so many points where I was like “wow that is so true” and I ended up highlighting so much of the book. It may be my most highlighted book of all time. There is criticism of society, capitalism, technology, and social media but also tackles other issues that may get in the way such as mental illness. While I agree with a lot of points in this book, I do think there’s a line between being burnt out from exhaustion or just being plain lazy. Sometimes I am the latter but that is okay with me. The book also offers some self-help tools which I thought were helpful points. This ARC was provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Ayelet Reiter

    I expected this to be mostly capitalist criticism (which I am super into), as it turns out it was that but mostly self-help. Still, it definitely deviates from most self-help books just by virtue of being anti-capitalist and presenting the somewhat radical idea presented in its title. Basically, it's anti-capitalist enough for your lefty comrades to enjoy but self-help enough that you could gift it to your liberal friends and family and they wouldn't be too scandalized. Personally, even as someon I expected this to be mostly capitalist criticism (which I am super into), as it turns out it was that but mostly self-help. Still, it definitely deviates from most self-help books just by virtue of being anti-capitalist and presenting the somewhat radical idea presented in its title. Basically, it's anti-capitalist enough for your lefty comrades to enjoy but self-help enough that you could gift it to your liberal friends and family and they wouldn't be too scandalized. Personally, even as someone who has criticized rugged individualism and the American obsession with productivity for many years, I still learned a lot and had many of my viewpoints challenged by this book. Who knew accepting laziness could be so much work? Some of my favorite sections included the history of how America's aversion to laziness was built (spoiler alert: it's a whole lot of white supremacy) and the conclusion, which focused on how compassion towards what we perceive as others' laziness will help us love ourselves more. What I connected less to were the copious descriptions of burnout, even though there were definitely times in the past when I could relate. I think this is mostly because there have been at least a handful of books and thousands of think pieces written about burnout in the last few years, so those didn't really feel like anything revolutionary compared to other parts of the book. It's pretty hard to argue with the notion that burnout is bad both for the capitalist machine and for actual human beings, and reading descriptions of people experiencing burnout is never a good time (Price even acknowledges how much of a toll these interviews took on their own health), so I wish this took up less of the book. The other thing that peeved me was the most of the advice for dealing with burnout and "the laziness lie" at work assumed that the person reading (a) has a white-collar job which is salaried and probably provides benefits, (b) that their supervisor is understanding and flexible, (c) that they have enough power and say in their job to enact changes to it, (d) that they won't lose their job by enacting those changes or saying "no" to their assigned tasks and (e) that dropping a few of their job responsibilities won't cause them to be unable to pay for basic living expenses. These all seem like pretty rare privileges at any time but especially during COVID times. Still though, I would recommend this book, and think it would make a great gift to any friends who need a little compassion in their lives or for book clubs to discuss.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Abriana

    I just lost my job, and it was a huge comfort to me to read a book that reminded me that my value as a person is not rooted in how productive I am, that it's okay if my capabilities to work hard and live a passionate life fall outside of said work. I really enjoyed the reminders to take stock of your values and figure out how to prioritize them in your own life. This conversation is both universal but also pretty privileged, and while I feel this was acknowledged, there also were some observatio I just lost my job, and it was a huge comfort to me to read a book that reminded me that my value as a person is not rooted in how productive I am, that it's okay if my capabilities to work hard and live a passionate life fall outside of said work. I really enjoyed the reminders to take stock of your values and figure out how to prioritize them in your own life. This conversation is both universal but also pretty privileged, and while I feel this was acknowledged, there also were some observations that weren't approached with the nuance they deserved. (Ex: when talking about the gig economy, it was implied the only reason people were working side hustles and monetizing all of their hobbies was because of societal pressures not because they literally can't afford not to.) But overall, I felt like this was a good message, a well thought out response to all of these collective conversations about burnout, and just a really timely read for me personally.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    I'm not generally much into self help but this came to me exactly when I needed this message. Bonus points for its queer-positivity. Sometimes the best thing good people can do is hunker down, care for one another, and survive. I'm not generally much into self help but this came to me exactly when I needed this message. Bonus points for its queer-positivity. Sometimes the best thing good people can do is hunker down, care for one another, and survive.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Matthew Noe

    "If your life has value no matter how productive you are, so does every other human life." You aren't your productivity. Work isn't inherently good and neither is "doing." "If your life has value no matter how productive you are, so does every other human life." You aren't your productivity. Work isn't inherently good and neither is "doing."

  6. 4 out of 5

    Rebekah

    It’s important to note that I read most of this book in between dismantling and cleaning our washer on a lazy Sunday afternoon. 🙄I was raised with a strong Protestant work ethic and two perfectionist parents and it’s really hard to unlearn the ingrained drive to never stop working. The parts about your body telling you it’s time to let up have been my experience and, overall, this book was a good way to reframe my mindset as I dive into a new job with more responsibilities.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Ape Bleakney

    Listened to as an audiobook. A wonderful read recommended for anyone in our productivity driven culture - if you've examined your own habits and/or the social science and psychology related to slowing down in a highly capitalistic society, this may not be new information to you - but nonetheless great to be reminded that we are not machines, and our worth is so much more than how much we do or accomplish. Each chapter looks at a different bias or niche, including activism burnout and how product Listened to as an audiobook. A wonderful read recommended for anyone in our productivity driven culture - if you've examined your own habits and/or the social science and psychology related to slowing down in a highly capitalistic society, this may not be new information to you - but nonetheless great to be reminded that we are not machines, and our worth is so much more than how much we do or accomplish. Each chapter looks at a different bias or niche, including activism burnout and how productivity relates to our boundaries (or lack of) in personal relationships.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Joseph

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. The thesis of this book, which appears on the third to last page, is that individuals who seem “lazy,” face unseen barriers and challenges that are unbeknown to others. This is not a book for those seeking advice on how to become more productive or strike a better work-life balance. Instead, the author makes an explicit argument for individuals to be more lazy in their daily lives (i.e., get comfortable with being less productive than society tells them they ought to be). This objective is highl The thesis of this book, which appears on the third to last page, is that individuals who seem “lazy,” face unseen barriers and challenges that are unbeknown to others. This is not a book for those seeking advice on how to become more productive or strike a better work-life balance. Instead, the author makes an explicit argument for individuals to be more lazy in their daily lives (i.e., get comfortable with being less productive than society tells them they ought to be). This objective is highlighted throughout the book from the authors’ personal anecdotes with individuals being overworked to the point of physical exhaustion. Although most can agree that there is a need to create a healthier relationship with our work in the United States, a real opportunity was missed by the author to discuss evidence-based approaches supported by the scientific literature that we can take to create balance in our lives. Much of the book is riddled with politically-laden comments, rather than scientific evidence. Though this will be liked by some, I purchased this book believing that it would be written in a more scientific manner given the credentials of the author; thus, I was greatly disappointed. Overall, it is an interesting premise for an essay, but in my opinion, the content is undeserving of a full-length book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jenn

    I won a copy of this book. I knew this sh*t was a myth. You knew it too. My grandmother told the Lazy Lie all the time, when I was growing up. She knew all the stereotypes and was very vocal about them to me. She passed from cancer when I was in my early 20s. The day she died, she was cutting the lawn and fell violently ill. As I'm calling the ambulance, she's yelling at me to put the mower away and clean off the driveway. She didn't want to stop. She never learned to slow down. I bet you know pe I won a copy of this book. I knew this sh*t was a myth. You knew it too. My grandmother told the Lazy Lie all the time, when I was growing up. She knew all the stereotypes and was very vocal about them to me. She passed from cancer when I was in my early 20s. The day she died, she was cutting the lawn and fell violently ill. As I'm calling the ambulance, she's yelling at me to put the mower away and clean off the driveway. She didn't want to stop. She never learned to slow down. I bet you know people just like her. I've since been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease and I've learned I have to listen to my body when it tells me to slow down, because I'll have earned myself a trip to the hospital if I don't. This life we live in America is not sustainable. Covid should have been our reboot, a time to slow and reflect. So here's the review: This is a self-help book, but for sure has some amazing points as to why we should slow down and enjoy life. There are usually reasons that can be pointed to as to why someone is being empathetic, unmotivated, or any number of things out society associates with being "lazy". Price has some great suggestions for unplugging and teaching yourself to enjoy things at a slower pace.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alicia Bayer

    Ironically, this book took me a really long time to get through. ;) I really enjoyed the read though, and it was very thought provoking. Price challenges everything about the lazy stereotype, and does so very convincingly. The author is a non-binary college professor and the book is filled with examples of people who appeared lazy but were in fact exhibiting absolutely appropriate behavior. They point out that our modern work ethic was very strategically designed to support slavery and capitalis Ironically, this book took me a really long time to get through. ;) I really enjoyed the read though, and it was very thought provoking. Price challenges everything about the lazy stereotype, and does so very convincingly. The author is a non-binary college professor and the book is filled with examples of people who appeared lazy but were in fact exhibiting absolutely appropriate behavior. They point out that our modern work ethic was very strategically designed to support slavery and capitalism, that is supports completely false beliefs about hard work, that it makes us all actually less productive and unhealthy, and that it keeps us from treating each other (or ourselves) with compassion. This is a fantastic read and one that should be on everyone's must-read list for 2021. You may not agree with it all (I didn't at the start, but got it by the end), but it is likely to make for some great discussions and personal realizations. I read a digital ARC of this book for review.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kalyn

    I cannot tell you how much I needed to read this book! I kept seeing myself in all of the author's descriptions of how people end up berating themselves for being "lazy" when actually the problem is the way society demands too much of us. I see a lot of this same thinking in my students (juniors and seniors in high school, who are overburdened with trying to create the perfect resume and transcript for college applications), and it breaks my heart to see how society is twisting their minds. Read I cannot tell you how much I needed to read this book! I kept seeing myself in all of the author's descriptions of how people end up berating themselves for being "lazy" when actually the problem is the way society demands too much of us. I see a lot of this same thinking in my students (juniors and seniors in high school, who are overburdened with trying to create the perfect resume and transcript for college applications), and it breaks my heart to see how society is twisting their minds. Reading this book opened my eyes to the ways in which society has conditioned us to believe that we are only worthy when we are being actively productive; that is, doing something to earn earn approval from others, rarely ourselves. Dr. Price helped me see that doing less was actually better for me, since it allowed my poor brain to take a break and for me to rest and energize myself to tackle the things in life that really matter.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    Did Dr. Price read my diary?? Because they have written exactly the book I needed. Some thoughts... ...on caffeine and Parks and Rec: This TOTALLY called me out for my love of coffee and Leslie Knope, and gently nudged me to see how both are problematic. And also gave me more of an understanding of why I can never seem to get to the *extra* hobbies that would be “good for me,” like doing nightly DuoLingo lessons. Again, did Dr. Price read my diary? ...on social issues and sustainable activism: “S Did Dr. Price read my diary?? Because they have written exactly the book I needed. Some thoughts... ...on caffeine and Parks and Rec: This TOTALLY called me out for my love of coffee and Leslie Knope, and gently nudged me to see how both are problematic. And also gave me more of an understanding of why I can never seem to get to the *extra* hobbies that would be “good for me,” like doing nightly DuoLingo lessons. Again, did Dr. Price read my diary? ...on social issues and sustainable activism: “Stressing out about a topic is not actually a means of working to address the problem. It may feel productive, because it keeps our minds busy and engaged, but it actually saps us of the energy to put up a genuine fight.” -Ch. 5 ...on the stories used in this book: Hell yes to the clear respect for people’s journeys, identities, passions and pronouns—and to the expansive, diverse, relatable examples and stories that Price uses. This book steers away from many self-help tropes and normative examples.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Lori

    I don't usually write reviews but this was honestly just so refreshing and relatable. I felt myself constantly nodding my head like "yes, yes, yes so true". I think the timing of reading this also fit perfectly for me personally and probably for many others dealing with overload of mentally, emotionally and physically taxing impacts from the pandemic and the related stress and anxiety that may feel overwhelming at times. It also opened up my eyes to the concept of emotionally immaturity which I'm I don't usually write reviews but this was honestly just so refreshing and relatable. I felt myself constantly nodding my head like "yes, yes, yes so true". I think the timing of reading this also fit perfectly for me personally and probably for many others dealing with overload of mentally, emotionally and physically taxing impacts from the pandemic and the related stress and anxiety that may feel overwhelming at times. It also opened up my eyes to the concept of emotionally immaturity which I'm looking forward to digging into more!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth Sund

    Like most self-help style books, Price goes off on a lot of tangents beyond the thesis that laziness does not exist. Luckily, most of those tangents were interesting. I don't struggle with feelings of guilt and spend a LOT of time doing "nothing" already, but there was still a lot I could get out of this book. The author helps articulate why I get so hurt when people ask me when I'm going to teach philosophy. NEVER! NEVER! I got a bunch of philosophy degrees and I'm glad I did, but it turns out Like most self-help style books, Price goes off on a lot of tangents beyond the thesis that laziness does not exist. Luckily, most of those tangents were interesting. I don't struggle with feelings of guilt and spend a LOT of time doing "nothing" already, but there was still a lot I could get out of this book. The author helps articulate why I get so hurt when people ask me when I'm going to teach philosophy. NEVER! NEVER! I got a bunch of philosophy degrees and I'm glad I did, but it turns out that's not the job I want. NEVER NEVER NEVER! (NEVER!) I like my job even thought it doesn't seem "good enough" to a lot of people. It's good enough for me, so F*@K off! I think this book would appeal most to Millennials and younger, but over-extended gen-Xers would find a lot to think about to. I'm just old enough not to care about social media, but the sections that focused on social media reminded me of the college students I work with. There's a lot of things students do that seems "lazy" but are actually a call for help. I work at a university and plan to suggest that we read this for my work book club this summer. I also appreciated how diverse the examples were. The overworked parent example was a transman talking about pregnancy difficulties and parenting pressure. Too many books of this type lean into "mom" stereotypes as the only examples of parenting stress. This book uses all kinds of examples, but I have a feeling that a lot of older guys would haaaaaaate it. I like that Price doesn't try to speak to that audience, and it's okay. Price works very hard to respect each persons' identity and pronouns.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Rae Slezak

    WOW! This book is a life-changer. I have been trying for years to undo the damage that capitalism has done to my brain, trying to stop equating productivity with goodness and worthiness, but this book propelled me into healing. The way that Devon explained how the Laziness Lie was created to get slaves and exploited employees to work harder, not for their own good but for the good of the slave-owners and employers, was so eye-opening, and really helped me to shed off the last bits of guilt I had WOW! This book is a life-changer. I have been trying for years to undo the damage that capitalism has done to my brain, trying to stop equating productivity with goodness and worthiness, but this book propelled me into healing. The way that Devon explained how the Laziness Lie was created to get slaves and exploited employees to work harder, not for their own good but for the good of the slave-owners and employers, was so eye-opening, and really helped me to shed off the last bits of guilt I had about never being enough, never doing or accomplishing enough. I do still struggle with feeling guilty if I don't accomplish as much as I wanted to in a day, but that guilt is a lot smaller than it used to be, and there are times I can genuinely enjoy doing "nothing" without feeling guilty, which never used to happen. I also really, really enjoyed the way Devon talked about radical compassion, for ourselves and our fellow beings. Regardless of how much anyone achieves, or does, or owns, etc. every single human and non-human is valuable. We are all deserving of joy. This book really helped me to let go of those last bits of the Laziness Lie I'd been clinging on to.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Justina

    At first I was caught by a colorful cover and later by the oxymoron ‘laziness does not exist’. It triggered me because I have never heard this kind of nonsense in my life. My curiosity led me to reading a description later reviews and the introduction after that. Everything sounded absolutely the opposite of what I believed is THE truth and even my values. Then I got hooked. The book goes through a pattern of human behavior in different circumstances calling it ‘The Laziness Lie’. It gives example At first I was caught by a colorful cover and later by the oxymoron ‘laziness does not exist’. It triggered me because I have never heard this kind of nonsense in my life. My curiosity led me to reading a description later reviews and the introduction after that. Everything sounded absolutely the opposite of what I believed is THE truth and even my values. Then I got hooked. The book goes through a pattern of human behavior in different circumstances calling it ‘The Laziness Lie’. It gives examples of situations and steps that leads to exhaustion, burnouts and self hatred. It precisely describes that voice in your head that convince you that you are not good enough on a daily basis. Besides that it also offers tools and coping mechanisms how to deal with that voice. I could call it an easy colorful read that felt like an extended therapy session, a compassionate voice that helped me to go through a hard time. It’s also the most inclusive book that I have ever read - using examples of different genders, races and social backgrounds. Highly recommended to those who believe that the world only consists of caucasian men and women without anything in between.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Signed, Iza

    I know am not alone in this. Students, employed ones, even as parents, we’re always cautious of not being labeled as ‘lazy’. Hence, we tend to work incredibly hard all the time over the term. Even within our conscience. The author’s highlights of how we feel when we are termed laziness strikes so deep, such as: My worth is earned through my productivity Work is the center of life. Anyone who isn’t accomplished and driven is immoral There’s always more we could be doing. You cannot trust your feelings I know am not alone in this. Students, employed ones, even as parents, we’re always cautious of not being labeled as ‘lazy’. Hence, we tend to work incredibly hard all the time over the term. Even within our conscience. The author’s highlights of how we feel when we are termed laziness strikes so deep, such as: My worth is earned through my productivity Work is the center of life. Anyone who isn’t accomplished and driven is immoral There’s always more we could be doing. You cannot trust your feelings of exhaustion and limit. It also highlights how capitalism has played a major role in this. The fact is, we’re doing far more work than is healthy. So we deserve to work less. See full review https://signediza.com/?p=275

  18. 5 out of 5

    Diana N.

    The drive to want to be productive no matter the cost is deeply rooted in our society. We are all on a hamster wheel between the demands of work, family and friends, media, and the desire to change the world. All of these things can lead to burnout and we need to "take time to smell the roses" sometimes. This book really embraces that we really aren't lazy if we take that time to enjoy life. We need to embrace our own shortcomings and have compassion for the shortcomings of others (they don't re The drive to want to be productive no matter the cost is deeply rooted in our society. We are all on a hamster wheel between the demands of work, family and friends, media, and the desire to change the world. All of these things can lead to burnout and we need to "take time to smell the roses" sometimes. This book really embraces that we really aren't lazy if we take that time to enjoy life. We need to embrace our own shortcomings and have compassion for the shortcomings of others (they don't really make us lazy). This book surprisingly gave me a new prospective that I wasn't expecting!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Victor Matthew

    I love this book! This book provides readers with the much needed sociological imagination of modern capitalism. Dr. Price's discussion of the Laziness Lie is the perfect intersection between personal and economic wellness. Laziness Does Not Exist is a must read for everyone: artists, academics, young professionals, blue-collar workers, entrepreneurs, and business tycoons - both aspiring and experienced. Dr. Price helps readers understand our role in living a healthy life in a healthy economy by I love this book! This book provides readers with the much needed sociological imagination of modern capitalism. Dr. Price's discussion of the Laziness Lie is the perfect intersection between personal and economic wellness. Laziness Does Not Exist is a must read for everyone: artists, academics, young professionals, blue-collar workers, entrepreneurs, and business tycoons - both aspiring and experienced. Dr. Price helps readers understand our role in living a healthy life in a healthy economy by explaining research across multiple fields of study, including individual psychology, industrial psychological, and economics in a digestible, friendly, and relatable way.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Thomas Beard

    Strongly recommend. Productivity is incidental to your life. You are more than how you work. When I was a kid, growing up with undiagnosed ADHD, I was taught I was lazy and I believed it. No one understood, much less me, that confronting tasks caused severe anxiety that I didn't know how to manage. Over the last couple years I've been deconstructing the concept of laziness and questioning whether it actually exists. So imagine my excitement on finding this book. Take care of yourselves, y'all. Strongly recommend. Productivity is incidental to your life. You are more than how you work. When I was a kid, growing up with undiagnosed ADHD, I was taught I was lazy and I believed it. No one understood, much less me, that confronting tasks caused severe anxiety that I didn't know how to manage. Over the last couple years I've been deconstructing the concept of laziness and questioning whether it actually exists. So imagine my excitement on finding this book. Take care of yourselves, y'all.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Shaun Shepard

    A thoughtful and timely argument for being kinder to ourselves and others. This books reminds us that our worth is not defined by our productivity - and that we should be mindful of judging others for their perceived “laziness” as well. Overall, I enjoyed this book. The message resonated with me strongly. That said, I did feel like the second half in particular touched on a broad range of issues that would have benefited from a more in-depth discussion. I came away from this read with a renewed A thoughtful and timely argument for being kinder to ourselves and others. This books reminds us that our worth is not defined by our productivity - and that we should be mindful of judging others for their perceived “laziness” as well. Overall, I enjoyed this book. The message resonated with me strongly. That said, I did feel like the second half in particular touched on a broad range of issues that would have benefited from a more in-depth discussion. I came away from this read with a renewed promise to myself: to let myself rest when needed, without judgment.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Bookish Boshemian

    I thoroughly enjoyed this as my first non-fic read of the year. Thanks Atria for sending me an ARC and giveaway copy. I enjoyed this in October ‘20 and felt it was a great way to start 2021 with. Dr. Devin Price is a social psychologist; and they examine the “Laziness Lie” - a belief system rooted in slavery, industrialization and capitalism. This lie filters through so many outlets we come in daily contact with; culturally programming us to believe: -our work is our productivity -we arent doing eno I thoroughly enjoyed this as my first non-fic read of the year. Thanks Atria for sending me an ARC and giveaway copy. I enjoyed this in October ‘20 and felt it was a great way to start 2021 with. Dr. Devin Price is a social psychologist; and they examine the “Laziness Lie” - a belief system rooted in slavery, industrialization and capitalism. This lie filters through so many outlets we come in daily contact with; culturally programming us to believe: -our work is our productivity -we arent doing enough -we are incapable of trusting our feelings and establishing boundaries. This isnt your typical self-help book; its fresh and very timely considering the state of society’s climate. Dr. Price integrates their own personal experiences, discusses ways to combat burnout; and shares tools for establishing the strength to not take on the pressures of society. They also emphasize the recognition of the societal conditioning that instigates self shame; thus perpetuating the lie that we arent being productive. I love that they endorse self care and reminding readers less can actually be more. I also love the reminder that having compassion for whats percieved as laziness can actually propel us even further in the act of self love. This will potentially challenge many thought processes and has many hidden jewels if read with an open mind.

  23. 4 out of 5

    ArchaeoLibraryologist

    This is one of the best nonfiction books I've read in a long time. I've struggled hard with the idea of always needing to be productive and never give in to the evil idea of laziness. I've gotten much better in the past few years of learning to find my worth beyond what I can produce, but this book opens up so many new avenues and ideas I never considered before. While I'm sure I'll fall into the Laziness Lie trap from time to time (both with my own life and judging others), I'm really glad for This is one of the best nonfiction books I've read in a long time. I've struggled hard with the idea of always needing to be productive and never give in to the evil idea of laziness. I've gotten much better in the past few years of learning to find my worth beyond what I can produce, but this book opens up so many new avenues and ideas I never considered before. While I'm sure I'll fall into the Laziness Lie trap from time to time (both with my own life and judging others), I'm really glad for the information this book provides to help me take a step back an re-evaluate my thoughts and opinions.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mariana

    I spent half of this book going “I needed to hear this!!” and the other half like, “so many people I know need to hear this!!” So everyone do me a favor and go read this book, okay? Also, it made aware that it might be time to get my anxiety treated, and I’m not sure how to feel about that. We’ll see.

  25. 4 out of 5

    JB

    I was compassionately called out on every page of this book, and I will certainly come back to it again and again. Many of us live our lives associating productivity or usefulness to others with our value and right to rest or enjoy things. Price explains how this came to be, why it's optional, and why we all deserve better, for ourselves, and those around us. Laziness does not exist. I was compassionately called out on every page of this book, and I will certainly come back to it again and again. Many of us live our lives associating productivity or usefulness to others with our value and right to rest or enjoy things. Price explains how this came to be, why it's optional, and why we all deserve better, for ourselves, and those around us. Laziness does not exist.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Viola

    https://jacobinmag.com/2021/02/lazine... You’re Not Lazy — But Your Boss Wants You to Think You Are By Chuck McKeever February 2021. So many of us feel exhausted and inadequate, lacking joy in our work and beating ourselves up over our supposed laziness. But we’re not lazy — we just live under an economic system that wants to wring more and more work out of us. In their new book Laziness Does Not Exist, social psychologist Dr Devon Price seeks to explain to readers that their exhaustion, their feeli https://jacobinmag.com/2021/02/lazine... You’re Not Lazy — But Your Boss Wants You to Think You Are By Chuck McKeever February 2021. So many of us feel exhausted and inadequate, lacking joy in our work and beating ourselves up over our supposed laziness. But we’re not lazy — we just live under an economic system that wants to wring more and more work out of us. In their new book Laziness Does Not Exist, social psychologist Dr Devon Price seeks to explain to readers that their exhaustion, their feelings of inadequacy, and their lack of joy in their work are not born of their own moral failings, but are the inevitable consequences of living and working under capitalism. Review of Laziness Does Not Exist, by Devon Price (Atria Books, 2021). In George Saunders’ 2017 novel Lincoln in the Bardo, Abraham Lincoln’s son Willie has died and exists in a sort of purgatory alongside the souls of others who, like Willie, do not know or cannot admit that they are dead. The story culminates with Willie’s realization, having witnessed his own funeral and his father’s life-altering grief, that he has died. His brave refusal to hide from that fact ultimately sets him and all the other souls in limbo free. You are not sick, [Willie] said. Stop talking, Mr. Vollman said. You will kindly stop talking at once. There is a name for what ails us, [Willie] said. Do you not know it? Do you really not know it? …Dead, the boy said. Everyone, we are dead!” In the world of Willie Lincoln and the other tortured souls conjured by Saunders, it is only by recognizing and naming their condition that they can free themselves. If they can’t name what ails them, they will be stuck in an eternal, hopeless present. For many workers under capitalism, the problem is the same. We lack the name for what ails us, believing ourselves temporarily stuck instead of perpetually exploited. Without being able to name and confront what ails us, we lack the first fundamental tool for freeing ourselves. Attempts to explain this problem to people have filled libraries’ worth of Marxist texts and serve as the raison d’être for publications like this one. Where you’d be less likely to find any such explanation is the self-help section of your local bookstore. That has changed with Laziness Does Not Exist, in which social psychologist Dr Devon Price seeks to explain to readers that their exhaustion, their feelings of inadequacy, and their lack of joy in their work are not born of their own moral failings, but are the inevitable consequences of living and working under capitalism. Self-help books, as a rule, exist to preach to readers that they can and should be doing more: more work, more exercise, more self-care, more self-advocacy. Our lives can be transformed, these books tell us, by making better individual choices. Price takes a different approach, positing that the entire logic of self-help is backward. We aren’t miserable because we aren’t working hard enough at happiness, we’re miserable because we’re all working too hard at everything. What’s more, no one seems to believe it, including ourselves. Price focuses specifically on one aspect of this phenomenon, what they call the “Laziness Lie.” According to Price, the Laziness Lie has three central tenets: our worth is our productivity, we cannot trust our own feelings and limits, and there is always more we could be doing. We internalize this logic to such a degree that we learn to believe that “our skills and talents don’t really belong to us; they exist to be used. If we don’t gladly give our time, our talents, and even our lives to others, we aren’t heroic or good.” And we’re certainly more fireable. The Birth of “Laziness” Where does this belief system come from? Price (who, full disclosure, I have corresponded with about the ideas in the book over the years with but never met) traces the Laziness Lie across American history, unpacking its roots in the Christianity of the country’s settlers and its utility in rationalizing slavery, indentured servitude, and child labor. By the time of the industrial revolution, Price writes, “Laziness had officially become not only a personal failing but a social ill to be defeated — and it has remained that way ever since.” It seems fitting that the United States just inaugurated a president who campaigned in part on the idea that millennials deserve no empathy for their generation’s immiseration, and who shut down a pointed political question from a town hall attendee by challenging him to a pushup contest. Obviously, the idea that struggling people deserve no sympathy is bullshit. That our new president scoffs at the people ruined by a debt crisis he helped engineer over a long, pro-banking Senate career is just extra cruelty sprinkled on top. But even the savviest Biden-hating socialist is not immune to the ways these attitudes seep into our lives and our attitudes toward ourselves and others. Capitalism demands that we function in a constant state of “speed up” at work, needing to cram ever more into the waking hours of our days regardless of our actual efficiency or productivity. What Price calls the “Laziness Lie” is really this demand for “speed up” taken to its inevitable extreme, such that it permeates all aspects of one’s life on or off the clock. Self-help doesn’t just perpetuate capitalist ideology by peddling the myth that every individual is capable of and responsible for changing their own conditions. It does so by insisting that our very human desire to live for something other than work is simply a challenge to be overcome. We repeat and reify the logic of our bosses in our own lives through social media and other avenues where the “hustle” is expected to be never-ending, even at home. Influencer culture, in Price’s view, has amplified the “Laziness Lie”: our meals must be Instagram-worthy, our living spaces minimalist and tidy, our bodies well-toned and well-dressed. As a result we treat fatness, tackiness, nonconformity, and other seeming imperfections as contemptible rather than default states of being. Perversely, this phenomenon can even absorb its apparent opposite. No influencer’s Instagram grid is complete without a smattering of confessional posts. Look y’all, today was a hard day, I’m blessed by this life but it’s not as glamorous as it seems. Just gotta keep smiling… These humanizing offerings don’t dismantle the logic of hustle culture, they reinforce it — because the implicit conclusion to each of them is …and I’m still getting up and doing it every day, so why aren’t you? The ceaseless demands put upon us by our own belief in this pernicious myth — and the attendant expectations of being an open and available friend, a politically and socially conscious member of society, a generous and committed romantic partner, and so forth — combine to put a crushing weight on just about everyone who works for a living. Price relates anecdotes and data about the ways that particular populations, such as people with mental illnesses, are compoundingly harmed by our societal contempt for laziness. But their analysis also includes the harm done to those with no particularly remarkable barriers who still don’t rise to the occasion as students or employees or voters. In other words, the laziness myth hurts the vast majority of us. Laziness Is Fake, Disenfranchisement Is Real It is disenfranchisement, not laziness, Price argues, that makes even relatively healthy people step back from challenges and check out from the world. If we don’t see the point of our schoolwork or any meaning in the jobs we’ve considered applying to, we’re not likely to complete those tasks. If we don’t vote even when shamed by others about doing our civic duty, we’re not too lazy to bother, we probably had to work that day and didn’t have the energy to go stand in line at the polls for a few extra hours (to say nothing of the pitiful options on offer, though Price doesn’t mention that). On top of all this, most other people we know are going through some version of these problems, too, meaning that the exhausting demands on our time don’t end when our professional or academic obligations do. We need help, and so do our friends and family, and we’re all using each other for it. A more explicitly socialist text would probably unpack these same phenomena as products of capitalist alienation, not just a general form of disenfranchisement. But Price has not leaned on the most obvious layers of the working class to make the bulk of their argument (though retail workers, health care workers, and bartenders do appear in their interviews). Instead we get a diverse cross-section of people whose time is not their own, from people experiencing homelessness to overwhelmed grad students to semi-professional streamers to working moms still wondering if they can “have it all.” While the stories and conditions vary, a single thread runs through them all: no one has really escaped the self-loathing and other harmful behaviors we have absorbed as we try to work and survive in a capitalist society. Price correctly describes the normalization of overwork as a public health crisis, and their interviews bear out this diagnosis — marriages, bright futures, and, in the case of one memorable interviewee who was so overworked that he began vomiting blood, internal organs all get damaged by workers’ inability to say no to the demands of a capitalist society. In this regard, Laziness is something like a fox in the henhouse: Price tells readers that we are not alone in feeling profoundly ill-used and sick because of the demands of our economy and culture, and makes their radical arguments broadly appealing by casting such a wide net in their interview pool. (It also doesn’t hurt that the book’s title is ambiguous enough to disguise its intent. Were your boss to see you reading it, she might think you a particularly motivated employee looking for tips on how to quit slacking.) Collective Action, Not “Self-Help” This trick of Laziness — to exist as an anti-capitalist manifesto posing as a self-help book — gives Price a tough needle to thread. Self-help books are by nature dedicated to improving, well, the self. But the full-scale societal transformation required to liberate the overworked world from capitalism can only come through sustained, organized mass action. Price is clearly aware of this contradiction, as one of the book’s currents is that precious few individuals are capable of maintaining anything resembling a decent life under the demands of capitalism, much less saving the world. This is not a book designed to teach downtrodden Americans how to throw off the yoke of their exploiters, though Price does repeatedly plug collective workplace action and unionization as tools. Rather, Laziness Does Not exist tells its readers, perhaps for the first time in their lives, that they are being exploited, and there is a name for what ails them: capitalism. And while the book’s prescriptions for dismantling entire systems are thin, it is a useful compendium of anecdotes, insights, and data that might help more people survive under those systems. “Sometimes,” Price opines, “the best thing good people can do is hunker down, care for one another, and survive.” Plain survival is not enough to change the world. But changing the world requires that masses of people understand their conditions more fully and have the time and energy to fight. Self-help books are by nature dedicated to improving, well, the self. But the full-scale societal transformation required to liberate the overworked world from capitalism can only come through sustained, organized mass action. This is a drastic departure from the usual offerings in the self-help section, which often start in the same place — What you feel about your situation is okay to feel — but head in the opposite direction — and here’s how to push past those feelings to go produce, earn, and do more! Self-help doesn’t just perpetuate capitalist ideology by peddling the myth that every individual is capable of and responsible for changing their own conditions. It does so by insisting that our very human desire to live for something other than work is simply a challenge to be overcome. Contrast Price’s book with two recent self-help bestsellers by Rachel Hollis, Girl, Wash Your Face and Girl, Stop Apologizing, in which the author “encourages, entertains, and even kicks a little butt, all to convince you to do whatever it takes to get real… Because you really can live with passion and hustle.” She “identifies the excuses to let go of, the behaviors to adopt, and the skills to acquire on the path to growth, confidence, and believing in yourself.” Hollis isn’t teaching her readers that their feelings and experiences matter simply because they are human beings with emotional needs, but that they matter because they can be catalogued for use or disposal in service of one’s ambition. The ultimate irony of Laziness is that it could actually be a useful tool for employers, as it contains reams of research on the ways that making people work less actually makes them work better — if not on their boss’s terms, at least on workers’ own. Abolishing overwork and other abusive practices might increase many companies’ productivity, and certainly employee longevity. But overwork is not just about profit or productivity, it’s about control. Companies are incentivized to own as much of an employee’s time as possible for what they’re paid, whether by extending the salaried work week into nights and weekends or reducing the break time of hourly wage-earners. Laziness Does Not Exist is the rare self-help book that understands the basic truth that the majority of our problems are not of our individual making, and therefore cannot be solved individually. Accordingly, Price does not promise tools for salvation, but tools for survival, and permission to forgive oneself for not being able to change the world alone. There can be no real “self-help” without collective work to understand and dismantle the system under which we all labor. Like Lincoln in the Bardo’s dead, we must be able to name what ails us before we can get free. It’s capitalism, not laziness. AUTHOR Chuck McKeever is a community college instructor and union organizer living in Seattle. He is the author of A Good Place for Maniacs: Dispatches from the Pacific Crest Trail.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    This book took me a little time to work my way through. It's challenging, and it didn't tell me what I wanted to hear, but I needed to read it and I deeply grateful I had the opportunity to do so. Price addresses the culture of overwork in a way that is compassionate, and realistic. They break down the history of American work culture and discuss the way social media and the internet have changed the way we receive information. As someone who has struggled for years to do "enough" this book was This book took me a little time to work my way through. It's challenging, and it didn't tell me what I wanted to hear, but I needed to read it and I deeply grateful I had the opportunity to do so. Price addresses the culture of overwork in a way that is compassionate, and realistic. They break down the history of American work culture and discuss the way social media and the internet have changed the way we receive information. As someone who has struggled for years to do "enough" this book was reaffirming, and comforting. I recommend this book 100%! If you're going to cross one thing off your list, make it this, and remember to have compassion for yourself as you work your way through. :)

  28. 4 out of 5

    Ahmad Moshrif

    I like the writer so so much, and I liked the concept behind the book. This book will definitely be 5 stars if it's shorter (which is supposed to be). I will read her following works for sure. I like the writer so so much, and I liked the concept behind the book. This book will definitely be 5 stars if it's shorter (which is supposed to be). I will read her following works for sure.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Erin Nigh

    “When we stop measuring our worth by how many items we check off of a to-do list, we can finally begin to seek out the activities that truly matter to us. When we set priorities based on our real feelings rather than society’s ‘should,’ we feel a greater sense of authenticity. And when we savour our free time and work to move at a slower, lazier, more intuitive pace, we begin to repair the damage that years of overwork has done.” I can’t say enough about this book. For me it was the perfect m “When we stop measuring our worth by how many items we check off of a to-do list, we can finally begin to seek out the activities that truly matter to us. When we set priorities based on our real feelings rather than society’s ‘should,’ we feel a greater sense of authenticity. And when we savour our free time and work to move at a slower, lazier, more intuitive pace, we begin to repair the damage that years of overwork has done.” I can’t say enough about this book. For me it was the perfect mix of highlighting the issues with our culture of productivity, the way the policing of our time affects our lives, and how we can work to fight against it. Price uses both qualitative and quantitative research to appeal to everyone, and the writing made it easy to read. I’ve been working on fighting this laziness lie within myself, but a strong case is made for the ways that those who are most vulnerable in society are trapped even more by this system that treats people as a means towards greater productivity. And none of us really benefit because we can never do or be enough. It takes a lot of work to undo these “shoulds” in our minds, but this book is a great place to start. The ARC of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jordan Brown

    I really really needed to read this.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.