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Slowing Down to the Speed of Life: How To Create a Peaceful, Simpler Life F

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  614 ratings  ·  70 reviews
This is the book for you if you've ever had the urge to tell off your boss, quit your job, hurl your Palm Pilot into the trash, and move to a farm. Written by bestselling stress consultant and psychotherapist Dr. Richard Carlson Don't Sweat the Small Stuff, it advocates the cultivation of a personal mindfulness and "thought navigation" to foster a sense of mental calmness ...more
Kindle Edition, 242 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins (first published 1997)
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Average rating 3.98  · 
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 ·  614 ratings  ·  70 reviews


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Charity
Ironically, perhaps, I read through this book very quickly.

I really like the basic idea---that through mindfulness and in-the-moment living, we can bring back the balance between our analytical and non-analytical thought processes, thereby derailing the circuitous train of thought that often leads us in a circle of stress, confusion, and overwhelm. The chapter on parenting was an especially good reminder for me, particularly the section about having compassion for our children's moods, even when
...more
Liaken
Jul 14, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: simple-life, healing
Okay, I've finished and updated my review. If you are wondering about reading this book, read my review to get the concepts, and you can probably skip the book.

From the book: "Given that thoughts and feelings are one and the same ..."

Something kept bugging me about the approach in this book, and I think this is it. I don't think thoughts and feelings are one and the same. That's not a given for me. So, their premise keeps tilting back and forth as it wobbles on this problem. Just prior to this
...more
Megan McKeown
As someone who strives to live a mentally healthy life, I do believe in the philosophy preached in this book. However, the philosophy of “slowing down to the speed of life” was really over beaten throughout each chapter. I felt more like I was being talked at than taught by the authors. I would’ve appreciated if it was written at a higher comprehension level. I would’ve also appreciated if they used the phrase “slowing down to the speed of life” significantly less.
Shayne
Jul 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: real-book
Insightful book on "mind hackery", worth a read, and helps me to make explicit a way I've felt for some time: your feelings are within your control, because they're deeply integrated with your thoughts, which are within your control. Often, letting go of unwanted feelings (stress, anxiety, anger) is as easy as realizing that your thoughts are causing them.
Ian Laird
In the self-help world the straightforward, practical books of Richard Carlson stand out for their common sense. In his wonderful ‘Don’t Sweat…’ series he provides guidance and techniques to make life less stressful; easier to navigate. By not trying to make us perfect he helps us make better use of our time and feel better about it.

This refreshing book, co-authored on this occasion with Joseph Bailey, legitimises slowing down, metaphorically and even physically. By not moving as fast as you ca
...more
Sean Goh
Reread in March 2016.


No matter where you go, you always take your thinking with you.
Without thinking, there would be no experience.
Thoughts and feeling are inseparable.

Analytic thinking works best when we have close-to complete information.
Using it for matters of the heart will lead to negative emotions arising.
When trying to force answers instead of letting them unfold, we end up rushing around frantic, confused and frustrated.
Such negative feelings are an emotional compass that something is u
...more
Lora Shouse
Apr 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I noticed that some of the other reviews were down on this book because they said there were better books on the psychology of mind. That is possible, but I have not read any of them.

The authors talk about the difference between the analytical or processing mode of thought and the free-flowing, in-the-moment mode of thought they equate with mental health. The analytical mode, they maintain, is the best mode to use when trying to solve specific, defined problems where all the variables are known
...more
Michael
Dec 26, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is really helpful. I totally get that the stress I feel is dependent on my perceptions more than the events and people around me. I feel myself implementing the ideas in this book and my life is already changing. On the whole, the book can be repetitive...arguably just applying the same principle to a bunch of different areas of one's life. Still, at times it was helpful to have specifics. I recommend it to nearly anyone, but even more so to the busy, overworked, perfectionist types (like m ...more
Phil
Dec 11, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
Scanned/read it as a reference from another author (Leo Babauta) that I admire on the same subject. Mostly useful for the tools that they give you, in dealing with stessors. Probably pretty standard "psycho-therapy" treatment in book form. I scanned probably 60% and read the rest (relationships, children). Good reference. There are better, more up-to-date works out there, now, on the same subjects.
Stacy
Mar 20, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Stacy by: Ken
Shelves: non-fiction
I liked the content of this book. I definitely can get on board with the idea that most of our stress is a direct result of our thoughts. I am only giving the book three stars, however, because I thought is was poorly written and presented. But as long as you look beyond all the awkward sentences it was pretty insightful.
Ken
Mar 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-help
In this book Richard Carlson and Joseph Bailey teach you how to create a more peaceful, simpler life from the inside out. It all starts by changing our thought patterns. A great read for anyone who wants to improve not only their life but the lives of those around them.
Laura
Eh. I got almost halfway through when I decided that "change your thoughts to change your feelings" just doesn't often work for me, and I lost interest.
Colette
I found this book worthwhile.
I had similar problems with it that other reviewers have mentioned.
The book glosses over what can happen with genuinely traumatic events and relationships. The authors come from the viewpoint that the person you are dealing with is also a rational, thoughtful person. That’s not always the case. There is no advice in this book that will help you heal from a past event, or help you cope with and abusive relationship or person.
That’s a big miss if this book really want
...more
Debbie Hill
I first read this "self-help" book in February 2013 and decided to read it again, now that many of our regular activities have been cancelled or postponed and the Canadian government has encouraged everyone to social distance ourselves due to COVID-19 with the hopes of "flattening the curve".

Co-authored in 1997 by Richard Carlson, the best-selling author of the "Don't Sweat the Small Stuff" series and Joseph Bailey, a licensed psychologist, the book proposes an interesting but not original conce
...more
Afnizar
Jun 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The idea of slow living appeals to me, and I did read a lot of articles and scanned through other books on the topic, but nothing come close to how this book manages to deal with the issue. This book discusses how to actually start living mindfully beyond the usual superficial mantra of 'live the moment' etc. by arguing that it all rooted from how we manage our thoughts, that slow-living can be done if we use more of our free flowing thinking instead of analytical thinking. I like how the author ...more
Felipe Bernardo
Mar 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It´s a great book as an introduction to an understanding from the inside-out on how our minds work and therefore, how understanding it allows us to have a better quality of life, at its own speed, one step at a time.
The authors' way of writing really spoke to me for the majority of the chapters, being very relatable as they share their own stories of struggle and understanding.

I only don´t give 5 stars, because after the second half of the book the authors gave many "to do" tasks or attention a
...more
Emmanuel Vergara
It started off good the first 4 or 5 chapters and after that it just couldn’t capture my attention much longer. I’ve read many different self help books and I feel like this one kept dragging after a while. Could’ve been written in 3 or 4 chapters. The author used many different examples to reiterate the main topic of “slowing down” and just wasn’t exhilarating enough. Each chapter was the same with respect to the different examples he used and that’s where it really got boring. This book would ...more
Ravi Raman
Jun 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A nice read about how to live and work better, not by working harder but instead by slowing down. The overall theme of the book points to a humans have to create innovate and find their way through life without struggle. Some of the chapters become a bit monotonous, and I wish there was a bit more data, science based stories or examples from the public sphere to back up the theses of the book. I found myself skimming or even skipping some of the chapters that didn’t seem particularly relevant to ...more
David
Jan 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Everyone should read this book. Whether you think you need this book or not, you do. It should be mandatory reading in schools, and standard business practice in workplaces. The middle is a little bit repetitive, but with good reason, the concepts are worth exploring in multiple life contexts. Keep reading though. I found the best thoughts in this book were kept to the last few chapters, a rarity for books generally devoted to a single important principle.
Sana Vasli
Dec 20, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book for Type A personalities who feel the need to fill every moment of their life and spend a lot of time in deep thinking. The authors challenge this idea and recommend a more balanced free-flowing mindset that help you stay in the moment. You need to reflect on the concepts and they are pretty easy to put into action.

I found it very easy to read and relate to.
Sarah Rigg
Nov 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Easily one of the best books I've read about dealing with anxiety. I have re-read it multiple times now. The authors teach you about the two different mind states and how to live more of your life in "flow" for lower levels of anxiety. They then apply their ideas to family, work, and other situations.
Wendy Gwen
Jun 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this book and keep it on my bedside table. So many helpful reminders to simplify and be in the moment. It’s written in an accessible way that gets the points across effectively. If I feel myself slipping into frenetic mode thinking of this book or rereading passages helps me immensely.
Amarnath
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An amazing book. A lot of emphasis of how living in the moment can ensure that we are living life to the fullest. Worth the read.
Linda
Aug 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, 2018
A bit too academic and repetitive, but good examples of how to slow down and stay in the moment. Reread because made an impression several years ago. Like the concept and I really do try to practice it.
xotic3
Sep 06, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I don't think this was my favorite yet, quite disappointed because I have read several Richard Carlson books and something about this book just bored me out and made me drop it :(
Arturas
Sep 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How can i read it? How to download it?
Sarah
Dec 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A good book that will inspire change and an evaluation and assessment of the speed within your life.
Dan Wingard
Feb 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Still relevant

Well communicated way of approaching life and each moment for what it is, that is as relevant as ever in our fast paced society.
Mathew Shray
Jun 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Great Read

Awesome read. Learn what's important through the stories of others with similar issues. Quiet your mind and enjoy your life.
Travis Russell
Jun 19, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I don't understand how this is so highly rated. This was a 10 page book that repeats itself into 200 pages. Reads similar to how you'd expect a bible written for toddlers to read.
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Richard Carlson, Ph.D, was born and raised in the Bay Area. He grew up in Piedmont and received his bachelor's degree from Pepperdine University and his doctorate in psychology from Sierra University before opening a private psychotherapy practice.

During his life, he was considered one of the foremost experts in happiness and stress reduction in the United States and around the world and was a fre
...more

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