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  • Writer's pictureLaura Perry

Burnout: A Book Review

I'm so excited about this book that I feel compelled to write a review before I've even finished reading it! I freely admit to being pretty skeptical of most self-help books (even though I've written one), especially self-help books aimed at women. But this one is worth your time.

This is a pretty popular book. How do I know that? I'm reading a copy from my local public library (support your library!!) and when I placed a hold on it, there were five people "in line" in front of me for the same book. It was worth the wait.

So many self-help books end up being impractical, even impossible, because they're written from a privileged or goodness-and-light point of view. Burnout, in contrast, begins by delineating the variety of issues that women and other female-presenting people face in modern western culture - including women of color, disabled women, and other marginalized groups. Then the whole book incorporates those issues in creating ways to help the reader deal with burnout and stress.

The authors do include QUILTBAG women/femmes in their descriptions and narration, but most of their examples are of cis/het women, so that's a bit of a shortcoming. But they do directly address POC and disability issues, so I'll give them that. Their writing suggests that they're actively working to be truly inclusive, and that they're educatable, which is refreshing.

I'm only about a third of the way through the book, and I've already discovered helpful methods that work for me. I really like that the authors don't expect you to be able to just magically walk away from stressful situations (hello, gotta pay the bills!). Instead, they provide tools for figuring out how to deal with the crap we can't avoid. Especially, how to release the stress at intervals and end the constant process that never wants to stop going around and around and around.

So yeah, you should read this book. It's aimed specifically at women, but the methods will work for most everyone. And if you're not a woman and you read this book, you might learn a little something about the crap all the women in your life have to deal with all the time.

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