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Fried: Why You Burn Out and How to Revive Hardcover – January 1, 2011
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About the Author
Joan Borysenko, Ph.D., is an internationally known speaker in spirituality, integrative medicine, and the mind/body connection and has a doctorate in medical sciences from Harvard Medical School. She is a licensed clinical psychologist, the best-selling author of numerous books, and a journalist and radio personality.
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Top Customer Reviews
Borysenko approaches burnout from a physician's point of view. "Burnout and stress are different. Burnout is not stress, nor is it caused by stress." This is a guide to recognizing the symptoms of burnout, which is a distinct psychological and physical condition. This is why we need a Harvard trained medical scientist, psychologist, and director of a spiritual mentor training program to show us what it is, and how to step out of it.
Borysenko takes the various signs of burnout off the pedestal of "necessary losses." Yes, our world is overwhelming, but this specific condition doesn't just come with daily life. "Unless you've experienced burnout personally, you may not fully comprehend how serious this state of emotional exhaustion and loss of motivation can be, and how crucial it is to meet its challenge before you collapse into depression, addiction, or physical illness."
It's very moving to read passages like: "Not only can I no longer make toast, I *am* toast... I have nothing left to give and very little interest in receiving. I just want to be left alone" (xx). Who among us hasn't been there?
The questions this book addresses:
-- Are burnout and depression the same thing, or different?
-- In what ways do adverse experiences lead to learned helplessness that increases your chances of burnout?
-- How can you learn to manage your energy and find a dynamic state of balance?
-- How do you find your passion?
-- How do you mobilize courage?
-- What is it about living in the Now that is so enlivening?Read more ›
The first part of the book, "Why You Burn Out," really delivered. I was able to see clearly how the deck was stacked against me and half way through the book I was thinking, "Holy crap, I'm screwed." I put the panic on hold though, futilely believing that the, "How To Revive," part of the book would give me some practical, step-by-step instructions on how to pull myself back from the abyss. What I got was a slapped-together selection of trite platitudes that can be boiled down to basically, "Stop the negative self-talk, find your passion and have hope." Really? As if those things have never occurred to a person with a severe case of burn out. The old saying, "Easier said than done," seems a HUGE understatement in this case. It leaves me wondering if she has really ever experienced true burn out.
Here is an excerpt of her golden guide to reviving from burnout:
"What I'm practicing is so simple that it's really easy to miss. Burnout disappears in the Now because there's no separation between you and life unfolding. You are present and accounted for, immersed in a harmonious dance with the moment."
Easy to miss indeed. Here I am in the Now, with my ill health and crushing load of responsibilities, and miraculously my burnout is gone! It was so easy! Who knew all I needed was a harmonious dance with the moment?
So, as I said, if you think the solution to your feelings of complete overwhelm, exhaustion, frustration and end-of-your rope hopelessness can be found in some inspirational quotes, this book is for you.
I feel like not only did I have to sit through a half hour lecture by my physician about my daily habits, but when I told her I was having pain in my kidneys to "take two of these and call me in the morning." I sincerely don't feel like this book addressed the topic, and much of it was rehashing of personality types ala Myers-Briggs, there was quite a bit of psychotherapy/alternate spirituality buzzword-throwing, and far too many personal anecdotes that didn't really fit. It seems to me that Borysenko really wanted to write a memoir about being burned out and just didn't know how to do it. So instead we have a somewhat ineffectual self-book all about Borysenko helping herself. I didn't see anything new in this, and if you're like me and out of work it will not help you at all.
I think Borysenko really missed out on a good opportunity to help out a lot of people who are in very dire situations right now. These are the people who actually have the time to read a book like this and might benefit most from it. Instead we get advice like, "make sure you take time for vacation!" Her advice can pretty much be summed up in this passage from the second to last chapter:
"To prevent burnout, listen to yourself, rest when you need to, and love your body in the way you eat and what your senses take in...spend time in silence, meditate, take walks in nature. Talk or write, but don't let anything fester." Page 144 (quote verified using Google Books).
I also found the writing style to be a bit abrasive. It sounds as if she is writing directly to her friends who all come from the same or very similar backgrounds.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
there seems to be a vast gulf between the description of clinical burnout in the first part of the book and all the pratical advices on how to come to terms with temporary... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Espen Heen
This book helped me understand why I'd become so burned out in my profession as a teacher earlier than some of my colleagues. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Anne M. Sorenson
Great book!!! It has changed my perspective on my life and my career. I have slowed down and enjoying my life for the first time.Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
Felt very validated and helped me truly understand and value my experience of burnout. Gave me pause that quitting isn't the perfect solution, it is an option but also need to... Read morePublished 15 months ago by BOMA RPA
great read, great reminders of somethings I know but have forgotten and some new idea's to practice in my life. Read morePublished 15 months ago by sherry
This book is a worthwhile read for anyone who is experiencing work stress and at risk of burnout. The first chapter is the best, and worth the price of the book, describing 12... Read morePublished 23 months ago by Kimmie
The author is annoying, pretentious, obnoxious and arrogant. The book is boring and not helpful at all. Read morePublished on August 22, 2014 by Julio C. Rojas
Dr. Borysenko does an excellent job of describing what burnout is and how it effects your life and health, but falls way short, in my opinion, of offering real help in the recovery... Read morePublished on August 13, 2014 by C. Legg