Burnout, The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle by Emily Nagoski, PhD and Amelia Nagoski, DMA

If you are the type of person who enjoys sitting around with your best friends, having a coffee or cup of tea, and getting into a deep and emotional conversation, this book will be a perfect fit for you.  The further I got into this book, the more it felt like I was right there with the authors and their best friends. It’s an incredibly accessible look at how women, and men but the book focuses on women, get caught up in a cycle of trying to meet everyone’s needs, be everything to everyone, and then got lost to the burnout that follows.  

Twin sisters Emily and Amelia Nagoski combine real life stories from their own friends and statistics to provide a path to completing the stress cycle that affects so many women.  At the end of each chapter, there is a “tl;dr” list-that wonderful abbreviation for “too long, didn’t read”. In this section, the authors provide a short list of key facts and questions to help summarize the chapter-as someone who doesn’t read as much nonfiction as she should, I found this very helpful.  

I found this book to be very helpful and insightful.  There are so many layers to our stress-and how we deal with it-that we don’t necessarily think about or know what to do with.  The authors provide practical tips on how to cope with stress, how to set limits for yourself, and how in creating boundaries and limits with others we can improve our relationships with those that stress us out.  As a person who deals with chronic pain, when the authors discuss the connection between chronic illness and chronic stress, it was like, Yes! You get it! Thank you!

Guess what else contributes to burnout in women-the patriarchy.  Not surprised? I wasn’t either. I found myself nodding along as the authors discussed how the constant stress of worrying about sexual violence, body image, gaslighting and work success is ingrained in women from the day of their birth.  I initially thought that this section was just preaching to the choir-but I do think there are a lot of women out there who may not realize how deeply established these ideas were in their own upbringing and that it is ok to draw boundaries, especially to preserve your own health and happiness.  

Now, this book will not eliminate all the stress in your life.  Life is stressful. What this book will do is help with completing that stress cycle and to find that balance that we all seem to be seeking.   

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Full Disclosure time: Thank you to Netgalley and the Publisher for the opportunity to read and review this book. All opinions are my own.