The Antidote is a series of journeys among people who share a single, surprising way of thinking about life. What they have in common is a hunch about human psychology: that it’s our constant effort to eliminate the negative that causes us to feel so anxious, insecure, and unhappy. And that there is an alternative "negative path" to happiness and success that involves embracing the things we spend our lives trying to avoid. It is a subversive, galvanizing message, which turns out to have a long and distinguished philosophical lineage ranging from ancient Roman Stoic philosophers to Buddhists. Oliver Burkeman talks to life coaches paid to make their clients’ lives a living hell, and to maverick security experts such as Bruce Schneier, who contends that the changes we’ve made to airport and aircraft security since the 9/11 attacks have actually made us less safe. And then there are the "backwards" business gurus, who suggest not having any goals at all and not planning for a company’s future.
Burkeman’s new audiobook is a witty, fascinating, and counterintuitive listen that turns decades of self-help advice on its head and forces us to rethink completely our attitudes toward failure, uncertainty, and death.
©2012 Oliver Burkeman (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
It has changed my opinion and views on goal setting along the general BS behind incantations into the mirror supported by many "motivational" gurus out there.
Not intuitive at first but when you think about it makes total sense - very enlightening for me
I focus mainly on History, Endurance Sports and Science/Speculative Fiction books.
I might. I enjoy non-academic philosophy books. Philosophy is dynamic field and contextualizing core texts in a modern idiom is a job well done. This book is an example.
Taking a calmer approach to the daily emergencies in life. They are merely obstacles to be overcome.
If you enjoyed The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holliday you will enjoy this book.
Having completed two listens, my review now is less scathing than it would have been following the first. It is well written, and the research seems adequate, I'll give him that. At times it is interesting. But the differences between positive thinking and negative thinking, as Burkeman describes them, are largely semantic, and fraught with contradictions. He is, it seems to me, needlessly dismissive and unkind to advocates of positive thinking, promoting his own thoughts as wisdom dripping with profundity while smearing the thoughts of others as mere homilies. Maybe I will update my review after a third listen.
I'm just a world traveling, espresso drinking Buddhist, meditating vegetarian, professional photographer with an off-beat sense of humour
I really enjoyed this right from the beginning. Some welcomed humour and an opposite point of view on self help with lots of facts and research to back it up. I would recommend this to any reader of self help books.
Absolutely - and I've pretty much been talking about and sharing this book with anyone and everyone over the past week as I've been listening to it.
I LOVE this book because it means I don't have to change who I am to be happy. It's about perspective and goal-seeking (a chapter which I found particularly fascinating and mind-opening)... you don't have to change who you are or your personality. You can be a rational logical thinking human being, and use those qualities to find tranquility and contentment in your life now. I think listening to the book is probably easier than reading it. I definitely see myself listening to it more than once (which is not something I can usually do - usually I read something once and it's done.) But this is inspiring and the context it gives to life helps you evaluate life from the place where you are - not from where everyone around you tells you you are supposed to be.
The examples and stories are fun and well-written, and the author is a great reader. I think there are some American readers who may not be used to English snark and might be put off by that, I thought it was funny.
My only real complaint is that he suffers from the same perspective skew that he complains of in positive thinking; lack of real evidence and a pious attachment to their own belief.
I can think of people in my life that could benefit from this book, in the same way that I know of people who benefitted from "The Secret", and over-all I think the truth sits somewhere in the middle depending on the individual.
I would definitely recommend this book, especially to students of marketing, behavioral sciences and psycho-history.
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