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Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  14,827 ratings  ·  1,883 reviews
This groundbreaking book explains why women experience burnout differently than men—and provides a simple, science-based plan to help women minimize stress, manage emotions, and live a more joyful life.


Burnout. Many women in America have experienced it. What’s expected of women and what it’s r
Paperback, 304 pages
Published January 7th 2020 by Ballantine Books (first published March 14th 2019)
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Keridwyn Deller Yes. I have no kids (and don't plan on having any) and I got a lot from this book. It is, however VERY directed to women/women-identified people.…moreYes. I have no kids (and don't plan on having any) and I got a lot from this book. It is, however VERY directed to women/women-identified people.(less)
Efrain Ayala I am a guy and I think it was such a great read. See, men suffer from Human Giver Syndrome too. As a husband to an alcoholic I can tell you that not j…moreI am a guy and I think it was such a great read. See, men suffer from Human Giver Syndrome too. As a husband to an alcoholic I can tell you that not just do men suffer from it, but we are shamed for it, we are often invisible sufferers of it. A few times I scratched the word “woman” off and wrote “human” which is stupid (but made me feel better.

Yes. This isn’t for women, it’s for humans. (less)
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Elyse  Walters
Mar 27, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Audiobook... read by the author.

When I first saw this perky pink- book - with the title
“Burnout”.... I was kidding - but not completely when I said... “Paul, I have a book for you”.
Paul looked at the title and said.... “stresses me out just looking at that book”.

I thought I would be nice and download it and see if I had any words of wisdom to pass on to my husband who is experiencing different degrees of burnout associated with his tired aching body, paperwork, and the state of our country.
This is a really well-intentioned book, and I think/hope it will be helpful to a lot of people. I think the authors' advice is generally very good. However, nothing in here was particularly new to me, nor presented in a way that especially resonated. In fact, I found the sort of Tumblr-y, fandom-lite writing style--"feels"! "tl;dr"! quoting Cassandra Clare, good god--to be a little too cutesy. Like, it was just a half-beat off rhythm from the kind of humor and #relatablecontent that does resonat ...more
Jun 12, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
As the authors would say, “ugh.”

No really, I counted about five “ughs” in the initial skim through of the book.

This felt not only whiny and unprofessional, but also as if they were setting me up not to take it seriously. Beyond that, it was hard to.

Everyone is talking about this, so while I don’t particularly relish giving something a poor review, I just don’t want you to rush out and buy it like I did without knowing what you’re getting into.

Firstly, the research presented throughout was... thi
Feb 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is filled with so much information, and I’ve been obsessively recommending it and quoting it to just about every woman I know. It’s got so much good and general information about the stress cycle, and how to deal with it. (And anxiety, and burnout, and loneliness, and and and.) A lot of the information applies to all humans, but this book addresses the unique stress related to being a female-type person. None of that stress will be surprising to women, but this is the first time I can ...more
Dec 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It might be a feminist book but the idea do work for both genders

I would have given this book 5 stars, except Emily and Amelia are only talking to half the population. Yes many women have had life and choices (or lack of choices) and experienced hardship more then man over the year. Things are getting better but are not perfect yet, but as the ladies says everyone's experience is different and a whole gender should not be judged by the few or the worst examples of it.

I disagree with the premise
Leigh Kramer
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, favorites
Someday I will look back on this time in my life and point to this book as when it all changed. Yes. It’s that good. I'm a huge fan of Emily Nagoski's Come As You Are. In it, she briefly explored unlocking the stress cycle and it gave me so much to think about. A whole book co-written with her sister dedicated to the topic? Music to my ears and boy, did it deliver.

The introduction and first chapter blew my mind, right from the get-go and it only got better from there. There are so many takeaways
Emily and Amelia Nagoski are talented enough in their chosen fields but they missed their calling as professional audiobook narrators. They pack a lot of info and wisdom into their "Burnout" book but, very importantly, they are *really* fun to listen to.

This book is basically for any and every woman making their way through life and shoveling the shit that comes with it. I wouldn't say I'm burnt out but stressed? Hell, yes. This, along with Emily Nagoski's "Come As You Are" should be required re
Apr 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wellness, food-health, own
The only reason I picked up this book is because I went to the bookstore to pick up a different book by the same author called Come as You Are: The Surprising New Science that Will Transform Your Sex Life (a truly outstanding, mind-blowing exploration of female sexuality and the female orgasm. #yesplease). While I was there, though, I saw that Emily Nagoski (and her twin sister, Amelia) just released a new book called Burnout: The Secret to Unlocking the Stress Cycle. Whaaaat?! A book on how to ...more
Jul 10, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was left feeling a bit confused after finishing this book. The title implies the book is about burn-out and how to solve your stress etc, but in reality the book was only about burnout and how to actaully handle stress for 10%, while the other 90% was filled with feministic chatter about how the patriarchy has caused your burnout or stress if you are a female-identifying person.

In my opinion there is absolutely nothing wrong with books about feminism, the patriarchy and how they may or may not
Katherine Pershey
Anna Shelby ☕
Apr 07, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: at-your-own-risk
This book is such a disappointment. Buckets of crazy feminist bs in it. This sucks as a help book.

It started out pretty good but turned into an annoying tirade about patriarchy and an obesity glorifying mantra.

I was stressed out just reading it. The messages are a copy&paste from girls magazines: find joy, not happinness, connection and passion are key, etc. etc. The villain is the patriarchy only, and being overweight is awesome, because we are all such special snowflakes. I hear you, dear auth
da AL
Jul 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent insights into everyday challenges & practical tips for navigating everyday life. The authors do a great job reading.
It isn't every day that I say that a book has truly changed my life but this one did. This is a book that every woman should read. EVERY WOMAN. I found it to be revolutionary ... it explained so much to me about why I was feeling the way that I was feeling. And, even better, it gave me information about how to deal with it. I only wish I'd had this book when I was in my 20s & providing counseling to domestic violence and sexual abuse survivors every day and slowly burning out. I sometimes wonder ...more
Molly Ferguson
Apr 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: aspirational
This is the feminist book on stress I never knew I needed! I would never have picked up this book if I were judging its cover, first for the "breast cancer ribbon pink" of the cover and then for the title. I blame the publishers rather than the authors for this, though, because once inside the book is searingly feminist and offers excellent examples and tips for how to "complete the stress cycle" so that you live to smash the patriarchy another day. I don't think of myself as someone who is "bur ...more
Ashley  Brooks
Nov 30, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: health
I'm in the minority here, but Burnout was just okay. The writing style made it hard for me to take the information seriously, or to even understand the information at all. Things like writing "(ugh)" every time they talked about the patriarchy or using cutesy, made-up words because the real science is just too hard to understand made me feel condescended to and a little rage-y. For two authors who are all about feminism, they underestimate the intelligence of their audience by a lot! That kind o ...more
Oct 18, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm too old for this. ...more
I'm not burned out, nor have I been at that point in any time since leaving libraries, but this is a damn good book, whether or not you experience burnout. There's no groundbreaking knowledge conveyed here -- we all know exercise is good for us and so is rest -- but the context the Nagoskis offer, as well as their research, offers up the why behind it. Exercise completes the stress cycle. Resting allows our brains to do a ton of work. I was kind of blown away by the fact we're to rest 40% of our ...more
Feb 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
All women should read this book.
Lisa Butterworth
May 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: brain-books
Much better than the average self-help book. It has all the usual good advice bits, and a few that were even new to me, specific advice for finishing the stress cycle, getting lots of rest, what self-care really looks like. I loved the "human giving" vs. "human being" discussion. The place where this book really stood out for me though, was is the acknowledgement of systemic inequality, so many self-help books want to sell the idea that you can fix all the problems in your life, and that makes m ...more
Aug 27, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Telling me to exercise and practice gratitude to fight my soul crippling burnout is not exactly groundbreaking. Also, too many Disney references.
Apr 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m skeptical when it comes to self help books, but after hearing the Nagoski sisters on Smart Podcast, Trashy Books and being totally charmed by them, I knew I wanted to hear more of their ideas. The title to me is a little limited for what the book actually is: an exploration of not just burnout but the stress that causes it, with a specific focus on how stress affects women and what we can do to release some of the pressure. Some chapters will resonate more or less with different readers, but ...more
Tess Malone
The first chapter of this book is amazing at giving you all the tools you need to break out of burn out and stop it before it even starts. The rest is rather basic heteronormative feminism disguised as self-help with a corny writing style that tries to be hip and fun but makes it hard to take the Nagoskis seriously.
Shannon A
Nov 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Everyone is burned out these days. Most of us (especially women) are brought up believing that you must be pretty, happy, calm, and generous at all times: Failure is not an option.
This book blows the doors off all that, by uncovering the true elements of and causes of burnout (with help from Star Trek!) and gives the tools and techniques needed to combat burnout.
This book is the much needed and urgent answer to a desperate call from all of us.

This is the book we have all been waiting for. Ama
Kaytee Cobb
I need a copy of this book. Need.
Mar 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-netgalley
*** 3.5 rounded up to 4 Stars ***

Let me start by saying I am not a fan of self help books that feel like cheerleaders. I don't want to be cheered on in life. So then why did I request this book? I requested this because this is NOT that kind of self help book. Burnout is something we all fear and unfortunately happens to all of us. These ladies did their homework regarding the scientific evidence behind burnout and how to prevent it, which I was extremely interested in. There's some graphs and e
Jul 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Crucial reading for overwhelmed, under-resourced women who want to be healthy and joyful people, despite the barrage of negative voices in mainstream culture.
Jan 26, 2021 rated it really liked it
I also received this book as a gift recently and was very excited to read it! I am a big fan of Emily Nagoski's "Come As You Are," and although this is different subject matter, I do believe she is conducting and presenting very relevant research particularly focused on women's physical and mental health (which I deeply appreciate). This book was very helpful for me in the way that it helped me recognize burnout in myself (and others) and made space for me to allow myself time to think on ways t ...more
Allison Parker
Feb 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, adult
I'm growing uncomfortable with the phrase "must-read." How dare I suggest you MUST read this book? No one NEEDS to read any one particular book. It's a rather personal choice, no? - what you're going to spend your precious free time on. YOU READ WHATEVER YOU DAMN WELL PLEASE.

So instead I will say I VERY STRONGLY RECOMMEND this book, especially if...
1. You identify as a woman.
2. You sometimes, often, or almost always feel a sense of hopelessness, frustration, or exhaustion because there is a deep
Jul 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful, informative and relatable, even fun despite the oft-depressing topics, like the "Bikini Industrial Complex" and the "Giver Syndrome", sisters (twins, actually) Emily and Amelia Nagoski collaborated on a book SO of the times it was almost too good, too real. Though it is really focused on issues women face and how we can cope with burnout in our professional and personal lives by doing things like not dissing other women based on appearance, it’s also embracing everyone's hotness, as i ...more
Jan 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to Edelweiss, the authors, and the publisher for an advanced reader copy. I will be buying a copy of this book when it comes out so I can highlight it all over and remind myself that I need to be following its principles. The Nagoski sisters expertly explain the stress cycle and how we need to make sure we complete it - otherwise we're carrying that stress around with us every day. We need to recognize the adversity that we face, too, especially those of us who are women, people of color, ...more
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Women at Silicon ...: Discussion Questions 5 2 Mar 21, 2021 06:25PM  
Skokie Public Lib...: Question 6: Listening vs reading 23 12 Jan 31, 2021 06:43AM  
Skokie Public Lib...: Question 4: What stood out 30 7 Jan 26, 2021 07:56PM  
Skokie Public Lib...: Question 2: Stressors vs stress 14 8 Jan 26, 2021 12:20PM  
Skokie Public Lib...: Question 7: Anything else 12 10 Jan 22, 2021 12:30PM  
Skokie Public Lib...: Question 5: Human givers 17 7 Jan 22, 2021 12:15PM  

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The official bio is:
"Emily Nagoski has a PhD in Health Behavior with a doctoral concentration in human sexuality from Indiana University (IU), and a master’s degree (also from IU) in Counseling, with a clinical internship at the Kinsey Institute Sexual Health Clinic. She has taught graduate and undergraduate classes in human sexuality, relationships and communication, stress management, and sex ed

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