Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time

Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time

by Brigid Schulte
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Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time by Brigid Schulte

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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780374228446
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date: 03/11/2014
Pages: 368
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

Brigid Schulte is an award-winning journalist for The Washington Post and The Washington Post Magazine, and was part of a team that won the Pulitzer Prize. She is also a fellow at the New America Foundation. She lives in Alexandria, Virginia, with her husband and their two children.

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Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
StitchVP More than 1 year ago
Well-written and well-researched, but a better subtitle would be "work, love, and play when working mothers don't have the time", as I'd say 80% of the page count refers to the overwhelming life of the working mother. That isn't meant to say that's not an important and worthy book, but it's worth noting that bias from the beginning, because a great many people might see the title and reviews and not understand that bias.  Many single non-parents also feel time stress and the feeling of being "overwhelmed" and might be frustrated that the "no one" in the subtitle often doesn't include them.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A must read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Accurately portrays the stresses people face today in trying to accomplish everything that needs to be done each day, no easy answer here but she does offer some helpful tips