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Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less by [Alex Soojung-Kim Pang]
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Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less Kindle Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 208 ratings

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Length: 319 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

From the Author

I became interested in the importance of rest in creative lives began when I noticed a paradox: many of history's most accomplished thinkers, artists, writers, and composers organized their lives around their work, but not their days. Figures as diverse as Charles Darwin, Salvador Dali, and Maya Angelou think about their work constantly, and achieve much more than most of us, yet they spend fewer hours laboring than we do. What accounts for their success?

The key is not the quantity of their work, but the quality of their rest. Many super-creative and -productive people take a distinctive approach to rest. 
  • They see rest as a skill: like speaking or running, it's something we all do naturally, and can learn to do better. 
  • They learn to harness mind-wandering: they develop habits that give their brains a break, or give their unconscious minds time to explore new ideas. 
  • They treat rest with respect, and make time for it in their daily schedules. 
  • They recognize rest as a resource that can extend their creative lives.
Rest blends history, biography, and recent work in neuroscience and psychology to uncover the critical but under-recognized role rest plays in the lives of creative people. It shows how creative figures structure their days to make good use of rest, and why long walks, afternoon naps, vigorous exercise, and "deep play" stimulate creative work and sustain creative lives.
--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.


"I recommend Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang...The title says it all-if you're prone to burnout or still believe that overwork actually works, this book will set you straight."
Arianna Huffington in an interview with

"[Pang] writes with an admirable focus on balance, on pleasure as well as success; in the end, it's difficult to argue with his conclusions."
Kate Tuttle, Boston Globe

"Consider this a much-needed guide for the overworked: a credible, factual case for chilling out and getting rest, by a well-known Silicon Valley consultant."

"Whether by making space for daily naps, as Winston Churchill did during World War II; going on hours-long strolls like Charles Darwin; or spending a week alone in a cabin like Bill Gates, pursuing what Pang calls 'deliberate rest' is the true key to fulfillment and creative success."

"Blending scientific research with examples of writers, painters and thinkers, from Darwin to Stephen King, the author exposes how we have underestimated the power of rest for our success."

Daily Examiner (Australia)

"Finally, a full-throated, exhaustively researched argument for why we should all work less and rest more-not just because we'll feel better (no small thing) but because we'll actually be more creative and productive as a result."
Mason Currey, author of Daily Rituals: How Artists Work

"Alex Pang wants us to treat work and rest as equals. In his fascinating, well-researched and highly readable new book Rest, he makes an excellent case for the critical importance of rest in our lives, drawing from the rest habits of some of our most famous scientists, writers and creatives from history, from neuroscience research as well as examples from some of the most productive people working today. You will consider how and why you rest in a completely new light after reading this book."―Wendy Suzuki, Ph.D. professor of neural science and psychology at New York University and author of Healthy Brain Happy Life

"Finally, indisputable proof that to raise happy, healthy, and productive adults, parents and educators must teach the next generation how to practice intentional to partner work with play, exercise, and sleep."
Nanci Kauffman, head of Castilleja School

"I love this book. Rest weaves fascinating research and captivating stories into a wise prescription for a healthier, more creative, and more fulfilling life in a technology saturated world. At heart, it is rest, in the many ways Pang describes, that contributes to our ability to be the best of what we can be."―Linda Stone, former executive, Apple and Microsoft

"You're holding some terrific advice in your hands on the virtues of walking, napping, and playing. Pang has written a delightful and thought-provoking book on the science of restful living."
Clive Thompson, columnist for Wired magazine and the author of Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better --This text refers to the paperback edition.

Product details

  • File size : 1282 KB
  • Publication date : December 6, 2016
  • Lending : Not Enabled
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Print length : 319 pages
  • Publisher : Basic Books; 1st edition (December 6, 2016)
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • Language: : English
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Enabled
  • ASIN : B01IMZ5DR4
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.3 out of 5 stars 208 ratings

Customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5
208 global ratings
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on May 3, 2017
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63 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on August 18, 2020
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Reviewed in the United States on June 12, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on December 16, 2016
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Top reviews from other countries

Mark Brown
4.0 out of 5 stars A change is as good as a rest
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 13, 2020
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7 people found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars be good to yourself, read this book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 3, 2017
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13 people found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars A most engaging; exquisite; and quintessential compilation of ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 7, 2018
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5 people found this helpful
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5.0 out of 5 stars Unlike other work/life balance books, and all the better for it
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 10, 2017
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9 people found this helpful
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David Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars This book will inspire you to respect rest in a way you haven’t before
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 2, 2018
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One person found this helpful
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