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Enough: Breaking Free from the World of More

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  589 ratings  ·  59 reviews
For millions of years, humankind has used a brilliantly successful survival strategy. If we like something, we chase after more of it: more status, more food, more info, more stuff. Then we chase again. It’s how we survived famine, disease and disaster to colonise the world. But now, thanks to technology, we’ve suddenly got more of everything than we can ever use, enjoy or ...more
Hardcover, 289 pages
Published January 24th 2008 by Hodder & Stoughton (first published 2008)
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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Jennifer Campaniolo
Jul 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
This book should be on school reading lists. Every American should read it. I don't usually make sweeping pronouncements like that since we all enjoy different things, but this book is essential to understanding why we can't go on the way we've been going--more, more, more, getting & spending, ever-more growth. I'm guilty of it. I can be materialistic. In fact, I started reading this book after a vacation shopping spree that went a little too far. I was on another continent and I wanted to claim ...more
Aug 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Stopped me from buying impulsively. I value my free time much more now. And I realised I am actually so rich!!! Time to work less and devote to more spiritual pursuits... And this without feeling guilty or running into financial problems. One of many such books, but I like the depth of John Naish. Personally one of my life changers.
a couple quotes below. i loved this book,

he is not a religious person, but much of what he talks about is what many faiths have always taught. he also talked about how being grateful makes us happier and actually kinder too. if we look for things to be grateful about we will find them and be happier for it. he is interesting on meditation and why it is hard to keep it going. the hawthorn effect means that changes are usually positive but this wears off and then the temptation is to try somethin
Jul 26, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
To save you reading this book, I can summarise the whole thing in one of my mum's favourite sayings - "everything in moderation". The central theme is that people in the West work too hard, eat too much, shop too much and live vacuous lives with no meaning or direction except getting more and more and we'll eventually destroy the planet. Wow, really? In typical newspaper journalist style, the author paints a picture of two separate worlds - you're either a depressed stressed-out shopaholic worka ...more
Sarah Clement
May 18, 2012 rated it liked it
I think if I had read this book before I read other books on issues like consumerism, I would have liked it better, but I still got a lot out of it. The chapter that I thought was particularly unique (in that you don't see it in many other books about consumerism) was the one on happiness. I found it fascinating and really helpful. Being born and raised in America, I hadn't thought much about the mental aspects of the "pursuit of happiness" which seems just part and parcel of the fabric of life. ...more
Jul 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
"Today's mania for material goods is more learnt than instinctive. While every society is designed to meet its members' basic needs, only modern capitalist countries concentrate intensely on material greed" - Our Stone-Age brains are hardwired to survive famine by gathering what we can, when we can - but these instincts are exploited by a profit-driven capitalism that encourages us to want more: more shallow information, more food, more stuff, more perfection. In a resource-limited world, this c ...more
Jarkko Laine
Mar 22, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: minimalism
A great, actionable book on the philosophy of enough. We need to start to apply these lessons NOW.
Dec 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
Well I do love a good thought-provoking book, and parts of this book were certainly that.

There has got to be a certain irony though about writing the first chapter of your book about having 'enough information' (with the theme about not needing to have too much information) and then bombarding readers/waffling on (in my opinion) with an excess of information in the rest of your book. So I took the author's message to heart and skipped through parts of the book because I didn't need an overwhelm
Jun 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lifestyle
A well-researched book on what 'enoughism' is. We may have heard it all before that we have too much of this or too much of that, but this book really breaks it down into easily digestible chapters:
Enough information
Enough food
Enough stuff
Enough work
Enough options
Enough happiness
Enough growth

Throughout the narrative, Naish provides a multitude of references, quotes, history, stats, examples, and backstory to support his work. Practical advice is given on how to overcome this more-more culture -
May 21, 2020 rated it liked it
Naish has a lot of fascinating statistics and anecdotes about consumer culture, but it becomes increasingly maddening the extent to which he sees this as a primarily consumer problem. Policymakers, businesses, activists are nowhere to be found. He disses one movement that is doing the work he says needs to be done--voluntary simplicity, whose message is practically 1:1 what Naish calls for--and ignores another. When he finally sits down with Tim Jackson and the word "degrowth" could finally appe ...more
Hugh Stevenson
May 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely worth your time, a contemporary revised edition would vindicate many of the original claims

From the cultural and technological references, it is clear that this is a book from the 00’s, however it’s content may be even more relevant to the 10’s, it is sad to see that broad divergence from the said trajectory has not yet occurred. Nevertheless, it is certainly the case that certain aspects of this book (mindfulness and intention) have certainly gained prominence in recent years.

As mini
Apr 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thought I am a Zen savvy. This book tell me I am not even close. It turns out this book is much above what i have expected what it might say about this topic. The author really has something to offer especially were the reader the one share the same vex and entanglement of life and mind.
May 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
Its very repetitive, has a lot of fillers and plenty of rhetoric as well.
Phil Whittall
Journalist John Naish is an ardent environmentalist and anti-consumer campaigner. He's the brain behind the Landfill Prize for example and Naish wants to start a movement of 'enoughness'.

In essence Naish says, rightly, that we've lost all sense of what is enough in our lives. We do not know when to stop and this inability is hurting ourselves, our societies and our planet. Rediscovering a sense of 'enough' is necessary, essential even for our survival.

Through seven chapters (information, food, s
Aug 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting indeed!

unfortunately also very depressing read when you are too ill to put its ideas into practice. Add to that that it is nearly a decade old and wider society doesn't apear to have taken note of any of the dangers outlined by Naish...
Feb 05, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: EVERYONE!
Enough - Breaking free from the world of more.

Amazing, Interesting, Refreshing and Fantastic book! Please buy or read this book - it's really enlightening.

I couldn't put this one down and read the whole thing in one sitting, about 7 hours.

It talks about how basically - in our lives - we have everything we could possibly need, but we still feel unsatisfied and nothing is ever enough. It talks about really interesting side-effects of this basic human condition, such as we have more than enough foo
Nov 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book from the moment I picked it off the library shelf. Each chapter is about something we do too much of, be it work, spending, choosing, eating, growing, etc. And for each one, Naish provides interesting research, thoughtful anecdotes and useful points regarding humankind's current excesses and what we as individuals can do about it.

One of the sections that was the most unique about this book (and which hit home the strongest) was the bit about how people today feel they have to c
A great book about evolutionary consumerism; the whats, whys and why nots.
Some excellent advice given, though to me most some is gonna be hard to follow. But any change is always tough, making an effort is worth something as well. Is it not?
John's advice to follow:
* watch your body-clock! Stick to a task that fits the clock, e.g write in the evening and make big decisions early in the day better fitted to me - make big decisions in the evening. Definitely not a lark, bite me! Wait, I should wear
S.C. Skillman
Jan 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a thoughtful, provocative and often amusing guide to our culture of "plenty" and abundance" in which our brains are (according to the author) hard-wired to desire more. Nevertheless I did sometimes feel dubious about the author's thesis that we are still operating on our ancient instincts as hunter-gatherers when we always had to respond to excess by seeking even more. Whatever happened to evolution, I ask myself? Doesn't it apply to the brain too?

That said, I must confess that I could e
Sep 13, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This is a thoughtful and intelligent review of where we are as a society today, or at least where some of us are at any rate. If you're in the lucky position of being someone who suspects they may well have "Enough" of most things, this book may prod you to think about some other directions for your life and how you live it. This well certainly be the case if you've also managed to salt away a couple of million to help you sleep at night while you think about how you may get by living on less. I ...more
Joseph Young
Nov 23, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people with over complicated lives
This is one of those books where you need to take the parts that are useful to you and discard the rest. You are unlikely to agree with all of it, as the author's and your own tendencies and values will probably conflict.

The book helps you think about what is necessary in your life, and helpfully offers many things that you might place value on that aren't really important in the long run.

As a generally happy person, I did not have much use for the trying to be happy chapter. Further, I am an a
Carolyn Lochhead
Jan 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Initially I thought this was going to be a pointless piece of unsubstantiated assertions and tiresome obviousness. Statements like ""It's no wonder more and more people are turning to computer porn rather than maintaining an actual relationship"" encouraged this view. I mean, really, are they? Have you done any research into this or is it based on a big fact assumption? And it's true that the book does contain a lot of assertions about trends for this and neolithic brains being hardwired to do ...more
Sep 06, 2011 rated it liked it
A non-fiction offering which is rare for me as I find it difficult to maintain interest in reality (but that really is a whole different conversation!). This was easy to read, had some very interesting concepts and mild suggestions on what to do to say enough but really the sad fact is that most of the human race is not sufficiently evolved to actually realise that they have to say enough - I have all I need. Their inane stupidity will shackle them with the more, more mentality until the planet ...more
Mar 31, 2013 rated it it was ok
I don't really know what to think of this book. John has a very distinctive writing style, a style you'll like a lot or hate the more you read it. I consider myself one of the haters. He tries to be funny and cynical but the long sentences full of blahblah words did not sound very convincing at all. It's not a thick book and yet you can still easily summarize it within a few pages.

That said, it has it's good parts. Things I didn't know (WWILFing, for instance), things I knew but brought me to o
Chris Turner
I did not agree with this author on a lot of the points he made. He suggests that everyone should wear the same suit as everyone else all the time, with just different buttons to customize it. He does not own a mobile phone.

If you're already thinking this guy sounds a bit of a hippy, you might be right. To rule this book out however, is not recommended. I got less out of this than I hoped for, as his message is rather simple (moderation and self control, good, consumerism, bad) but the points h
Jun 26, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
For anyone who has chosen to consume less, this book would be a great support. I didn't find the first chapter "Enough Information" all that interesting but it was worth persisting to read a very interesting chapter two "Enough Food" and an especially good chapter three "Enough Stuff". "Enough Work", "Enough Options", "Enough Happiness" and "Enough Growth" follow. The book concludes with "Never enoughs" as chapter eight in which the author emphasises the value of gratitude and social connectedne ...more
Aug 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: philosophy
I really enjoyed this book. I know he was preaching to the choir, but I still found it interesting, well organized and well written. I liked his mix of anecdotes, data and humour.

However, I'm not sure he is quite right that individuals are the ones that are going to be able to stop their consumerist behaviour. I do believe governments are going to have to step in and at least start guiding the process.
Jun 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
This took me way too long to read, I guess it is a book you can go back too easily. Although I'm pretty sure if I'd given it my full attention my review would be different.

The ideas were interesting and new, there was a bit too much waffle and language disguised the raw ideas, but once there it was very eye opening.

Enough happiness and information was probably the most new and different topics. Will probably dip into again some time.
Feb 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This book could change your life! Long overdue call to arms about resoucres and our quality of life. An ideal way to pause and assess what we as humans are doing to ourselves and our surroundings. If you feel overworked, stressed or have no time then definitely pick this up. ...more
Raahul Khadaliya
Jan 19, 2010 rated it really liked it
Enough is enough. The book emphasis on the typical scenarios we are living in and pointing to be different to think actually out of the box. not just adding new needs and tangible products to the world. A very good example about human behavior which is completely dependent/surrounded by things they need or want..
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John Naish is a British health journalist, currently writing for The Times.

He is a t'ai chi–practicing vegetarian and does not own a mobile phone. He lives in Brighton.

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