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The Antidote

Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking
Burkeman, Oliver (Book - 2012 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The Antidote


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Exploring the dark side of the theories put forth by such icons as Norman Vincent Peale and Eckhart Tolle by looking to both ancient philosophy and current business theory, Burkeman--a feature writer for British newspaper The Guardian--offers up the counterintuitive idea that only by embracing and examining failure and loss and unhappiness will we become free of it.
Authors: Burkeman, Oliver
Statement of Responsibility: Oliver Burkeman
Title: The antidote
happiness for people who can't stand positive thinking
Publisher: New York :, Faber and Faber,, c2012
Characteristics: 236 p. ;,22 cm.
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Report This Apr 08, 2013
  • bookwormjeph rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

I first heard oliver burkeman being interview by kim hill a couple of years ago and what drew me to listening was his humour around a topic that adherents often take so seriously. His writing is delivered with the same humour while constructing and offering a very well researched counter opinion to the usual norm of thinking positively. well worth reading-especially if you are a person who has perhaps been sceptical about positive thinking as a default position to take on life's events.

Report This Feb 18, 2013
  • ksoles rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

In "The Antidote," British journalist Oliver Burkeman asserts that one cannot achieve happiness through the clichés of positive thinking, motivational pep talks and narrowly-focused goal setting. Instead, living a fulfilling life requires embracing both uncertainty and negative thoughts. In eight chapters, readers meet Stoics, Buddhists and other philosophers all of whom possess "a willingness to...pause and take a step back; to turn to face what others might flee from." Burkeman does not intend to offer fool-proof rules for a happy life. He thoughtfully and thoroughly explores topics often shied away from and arrives at wise advice. This fresh and readable book offers humour, anecdotes and a powerfully sustained thesis.

Do you think about those worse off than you so you can feel better? Does making goals make you more anxious? Then this bk is for you!--and for people who really don't like self-help bks. (Though some parts of it made me squeeze my head to get around the topics.)

Report This Oct 16, 2012
  • StellaCometa rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Interesting book that makes you look critically at the current emphasis on positive thinking.

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