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How to Do Nothing
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
After the American presidental election of 2016, Jenny Odell felt so overstimunated and disoriented by information, misinformation, and the expressions of others, that reality itself seemed to slip away. How To Do Nothing is her action plan for resistance. Drawing on the ethos of tech culture, a background in the arts, and personal storytelling, Jenny Odell makes a powerful argument for refusal: refusal to believe that our lives are instruments to be optimised. She argues that nothing can be quite so radical as doing... nothing.
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review
Bevita
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Bailedbailed

Timely and important, but I must remember I prefer fiction. Bailed.

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mdemanatee
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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I‘ve been in a bit of a funk lately and my reading has suffered but hoping to come out of it after a very successful Chicago indie bookstore crawl for Independent Bookstore Day. You know, in addition to my library stacks and existing owner TBR.

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rjsthumbelina
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Mehso-so

I think a lot of her points went over my head a bit, bc I was listening to the audio while driving. (Ironic 🤔) I'd recommend reading this one with your eyes. What I took in made sense, though. #wintergames2021 #teamgamesleighers @staycurious #littenlistenbingo #wrapitupreadathon #averymerryreadathon #merryandbrightreadathon #averymerrybingo #bookspinbingo #wintercosy #festivereadathon
16+480=496 points

30 likes1 stack add
review
SamAnne
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Bailedbailed

This book is pissing me off. I‘d rather read a book entitled Self care So You Can Do Something. I really dislike “self-help” books written from a place of privilege. While she addresses that issue at different points, it is the place Odell is writing from. Too much about rich techies trying to get away from it all. Climate change is hammering us, whether it is the West on fire or poor people being crushed by hurricanes. 👇

SamAnne We are in crisis as a world and I‘d rather focus on how we inspire ourselves to get involved. She has good comments to make about what capitalism is doing to people, monetizing time, etc. But I‘d rather read the authors she quotes like Rebecca Solnit.. As a conservation activist facing the wall of burn out, I agree with the need for self care. But I‘d rather turn to Thomas Merton for inspiration. #unpopularopinion (edited) 12mo
TiredLibrarian I bailed on this too. It was nothing like I thought it would be, based on reviews I'd read. 12mo
JamieArc I didn‘t like this either. What pissed me off was that for a book about doing nothing, I had to put a heck of a lot of energy into focusing on what she was saying and following as I listened to the audio 😂 12mo
See All 7 Comments
SamAnne @JamieArc and the downside to audiobooks is you can‘t hurl them out the car window! 😂😂 12mo
SamAnne @TiredLibrarian I should never pick up books like this. Haven‘t been so irritated since Having to read The Happiness Project for book club. Or Sallie Tilsdale‘s Advice for Future Corpses…a book on death and dying focused only on people having peaceful deaths with no conflict. Which wasn‘t the book I needed to read when helping my mom in her final month. No patience for the privileged position of such writers. (edited) 12mo
ravenlee I read part of a parenting book like this - realized very early that it had nothing whatsoever to offer me as a middle-class SAHM. The acknowledgements included such close friends of the author as big-name actors and “personalities” and right away it smacked of nannies and housekeepers and gardeners. Sure enough. Ugh. 12mo
suvata I try to stay away from “self help“ books altogether. They usually annoy me. 12mo
55 likes1 stack add7 comments
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CuriousG
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Reading, watching the tomatoes grow, and contemplating my digital life. Currently ruminating over what exactly does posting on social media do for me? Appreciate any thoughts on how to interact more mindfully with my chosen platforms!

TheLudicReader That‘s the question, isn‘t it? What are the benefits of posting/reading/interacting on social media? I have a love/hate relationship with it, for sure. 14mo
CuriousG @TheLudicReader Love/hate relationship is definitely how I would define it. Trying to really nail down the key purpose and then be more intentional with how I use social media. 13mo
24 likes2 comments
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CuriousG
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Perfect location to sit and dig into this book last night.

CaitZ Beautiful 14mo
PaperbackPirate 😍 13mo
23 likes2 comments
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slategreyskies
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Bailedbailed

This book was not for me. I just kept thinking, “this is sooo bad. Oh god, she‘s going off on another tangent!” And I didn‘t get the point of the book or how the various stories related to the chapters they were inserted in. I wanted to throw the book against the wall! I finally decided it would be best to bail on it and read something I actually enjoyed.

#DNF #UnpopularOpinion

JamieArc I didn‘t like this one either. For a book about doing nothing/not having to be productive, it took way too much work to focus and figure out where she was going. That really annoyed me. 1y
BookishMarginalia Life‘s too short 1y
janeycanuck The title is so misleading. It‘s not a how-to at all but more of a why-to. I listened to the audio and found it confusing, thought maybe it was because it was audio, good to know it‘s similar in print. 1y
41 likes3 comments
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StaceGhost
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

Clearly not doing well keeping off screens but working on doing nothing as often as possible. I never knew how involved concussion recovery was but I‘m finding the aluminum lining 📸by my lovely artist friend, Kat Corvidae

DivineDiana Take care of yourself. ❤️ 1y
SamAnne Wishing you a strong recovery. 1y
Nute Praying for a quick and complete recovery for you! Take Care!💕 14mo
29 likes3 comments
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SkeletonKey
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Current audiobook and it definitely resonates.

wanderinglynn I love doing nothing. I‘m quite good at it! 😉 1y
SkeletonKey @wanderinglynn - It‘s a valuable skill!! 1y
33 likes4 stack adds2 comments
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youneverarrived
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Last day on holiday, getting a bit of reading in before heading to the beach. Just hope the weather cheers up soon ☀️

Cathythoughts I hope the weather gets better 🤞🏻☀️ 1y
youneverarrived @Cathythoughts thanks Cathy it did get a bit warmer 😁 1y
DivineDiana Beautiful cover! 1y
57 likes3 comments
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youneverarrived
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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The other half is looking after Alfie this morning so I can read in bed 🥰 and he made me a coffee.. the cup though 😂 (I‘m so sentimental I kept this cup from years ago)

JennyM Enjoy the time with your book and coffee 😘 1y
LeahBergen Happy Birthday! ❤️📚❤️📚 1y
rockpools How lovely! Happy Birthday Katie - have a wonderful day 😘 1y
See All 17 Comments
youneverarrived @JennyM thanks Jenny 🤗 1y
youneverarrived @LeahBergen thank you ❤️❤️❤️ 1y
youneverarrived @rockpools thanks Rachel 😘 1y
squirrelbrain Aw how lovely! 1y
batsy How lovely! Perfect book to read in bed & I love everything about this pic 😍 1y
Liz_M Happy Birthday! 🎂 📚 🌷 1y
DaveGreen7777 Happy Birthday! 🥳🎂🎁🎉🎈 1y
erzascarletbookgasm Happy birthday! Hope you‘re having a lovely day 🥳📚 1y
youneverarrived @squirrelbrain it was 💕 he bought me a McDonald‘s brekkie after too so even better 😀 1y
youneverarrived @batsy 🤍🤍🤍 1y
squirrelbrain Even better! 🤣 1y
JennyM And it‘s your birthday! Happiest of birthday, Katie. Hope you‘ve had a great day 😘🎉😘 1y
youneverarrived @JennyM thank you 🥰🥰 1y
52 likes17 comments
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monalyisha
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Just a general update after coming out the other side of Screen-Free Week: there are certain apps I missed & those I didn‘t. Now I know which is which & feel like, after a week of going cold-turkey, I‘ll be able to resist the pull of social media *way* better.

I moved both FB & Instagram into folders so they‘re not as readily accessible. But I DID miss Litsy & Goodreads! I *need* them to keep track of my reading! Such a valuable service.

Graywacke I moved my fb app too, haven‘t been on since. 1y
monalyisha @Graywacke Excellent! 🙌🏻 (I do still use their Messenger app, though. That‘s the other one I missed. It‘s where my book club/college friends chat throughout the day, & a couple of mutual friends of my husband & I actually use it as their primary method of communication — rather than texting or phone calls.) 1y
Lindy Welcome back. 😊 1y
See All 6 Comments
Graywacke @monalyisha i didn‘t move messenger but I‘m not as nearly active there as you are. It‘s different though. Not conducive to mind numbing, insecurity generating, deep time-loss dives ☺️ 1y
KatieDid927 I take periodic Instagram breaks, and it‘s so great. You notice how easily you get sucked in or mindlessly scroll. But I couldn‘t live without Litsy! Haha (edited) 1y
Clare-Dragonfly Of course you missed Litsy! It‘s the best there is. 🤗 1y
87 likes1 stack add6 comments
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CuriousG
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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I'm posting one book per day from the ever growing unread stacks in my personal library. No description or explanation, just books I own and plan to read. #tbr

Day 70.1 (Kindle edition)

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monalyisha
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Screen-Free Week is coming up (May 3rd - May 9th) & I‘m planning to avoid social media for the week (Litsy included).🤞🏻

I wrote a little blog post about it for work, complete with book recommendations. Check it out & help me look popular (social media‘s a problem for a reason, right? I crave that validation! 😜).

https://tinyurl.com/2mcn95d4

Suet624 I had no idea there was such a thing as screen free week. Gulp. Good luck and bless you!!! 1y
Libby1 An excellent article! 1y
Bookwormjillk Great list! 1y
monalyisha Thanks for reading @Libby1 & @Bookwormjillk! 1y
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick Good luck! I held onto my flip phone cour that exact same reason. I find turning off notifications for the time-suckage apps helps a bit. 1y
58 likes5 comments
review
janeycanuck
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

More of a WHY to do nothing vs how to do nothing - Odell explores how our attention has become a commodity and the value in taking your attention back, creating awareness for yourself in how you are using your attention and being deliberate in your choices. It was somewhat hard to follow on audio - the narrator would be better suited to fiction.

24 likes2 stack adds
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kbuggle
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Mehso-so

I think I was looking for more- or expected something else. I‘m not sure. It was fine, and maybe I just didn‘t read this at the right time for me to love it.

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broughtyoubooks
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

This was a book I really needed right now, looking at the 'attention economy' and the enforced nature of productivity across job and - what should be - 'not job' time. It makes parallels to environmental issues and activism, and presents itself in a way that is readable to people who don't usually pick up non fiction stuff (ie me).

63 likes1 stack add
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BekaReid
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

This book isn't about doinging nothing, and it isn't a social media detox. Rather Jenny Odell writes of her own observations and experiences in these essays as she examines what it means to be productive and our perception of time, place, self, and community. She presents her findings on awareness (biological, ecological, social, etc.) and argues for the need to gain control of our attention and where we place it.

13 likes1 stack add
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BekaReid
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Starting this one today, and I must say I like the term "fresh horrors device" ?

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Kaarin
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Mehso-so

I struggled with this one. Odell makes some powerful arguments that are absolutely worth consideration & application. But some points have blinders on, which makes certain sections frustrating.

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Angitron
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

I really loved this small but powerful book. It‘s not a true “How to...” book, but instead pulls from various sources to discuss how social media has stolen our attention away, and how to reclaim it. I borrowed the ebook from my local library, but I‘m considering buying a hard copy that I can reach for time and time again.

kathedron I've been considering this as a Christmas gift for my husband. You might have just persuaded me. 😊 2y
23 likes1 comment
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nofutureparttwo
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell

“One might say the parks and libraries of the self are always about to be turned into condos.”

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underground_bks
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

This book is not a social media detox—it‘s way weirder than that! How to Do Nothing is about resisting the attention economy—directing our attention with intention, valuing activities that cannot be commodified and are thus defined as “nothing.” Through examples of cool ass performance art, bioregionalism, radical history, and more, artist Jenny Odell blazes a way back toward repossessing one of our most endangered, vital resources—our attention.

candority Such a pretty kitty! 😻 2y
underground_bks My bookstore is spotlighting cats up for adoption in our local shelter through #petsandpagesmonday. This is Mrs. Ellie and she got adopted last week! 🥳 2y
Leftcoastzen Yay!😹😻 2y
readordierachel Great review! And this picture is amazing. 2y
26 likes1 stack add4 comments
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brandierickson
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Not really about how to do nothing, more about disengaging with social media and re-engaging with nature and the community around you. I really, really enjoyed this.

llcoolnate 🙌 🙌 2y
16 likes1 stack add1 comment
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MaleficentBookDragon
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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#Insomnia has me starting a new audiobook from the library.

TheBookStacker Insomnia and anxiety combined has me binge watching Love Island embarrassing but my anxiety won‘t allow me to read a book 2y
Avanders Hope you got a little sleep! Also... how‘s the book so far? Curious about that one... 2y
59 likes2 comments
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valeriegeary
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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It's a zucchini bread and philosophy kind of morning. #audiobaking

LeahBergen Nice! 👏🏻 2y
36 likes1 stack add1 comment
review
Chelsea.Poole
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

I connected deeply with this thought-provoking, eye-opening title. Odell touches on many points including reducing time spent on social media, connecting with nature, and even the bigger picture of the need for humans to learn more about natural surroundings in order to appreciate and create a mutually-beneficial relationship with our planet. Loved it. And she definitely does not want us to do nothing. 🌏 🌸

Booksnchill Oh agreed- almost done with the audio and she is challenging my time allocation- in a positive way- not the book I expected but it is better! 2y
Freespirit Sounds great! 2y
batsy Great review. I found this a deeply rewarding read. 2y
89 likes1 stack add3 comments
blurb
tenar
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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My first week on Litsy & first #monthlywrapup. I completed 12 books in July, one of my best reading months! Amazingly, I liked every book.

Above are the 6 I think will stick with me the longest. Gathering Moss, Wild Snail, & Rough Magic are nature memoirs, the first more nature and the last more memoir. My Cousin Rachel is the only fiction! Disability Visibility & How to Do Nothing (poorly titled) are essay collections and top picks. #julywrapup

SW-T Liked the tagged book. Lots of food for thought. 2y
14 likes1 stack add1 comment
review
nikkchan
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
Mehso-so

Interesting thesis that feels timely especially in light of current events, but a very challenging read.

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Booksnchill
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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So during this pandemic I have been trying to jump start my creativity. I had trouble concentrating with all the “noise” in the silence- the pull and tug of isolation vs news and fear and confusion. This book (tagged) encourages us to find our silence and take control-not dropping out so much as being deliberate in our connectedness. I recommend it to help with the background noise of constant accessibility to others and their expectations.😷🤛

kspenmoll Beautiful illustrations. 2y
britt_brooke I love these so much! You taking commissions? My sweet Vaughn would love a flamingo. 🦩😉 For real though, I would buy one of these. You‘re amazing, my friend. 2y
Booksnchill @kspenmoll thanks- those are 4 of my new mixed media works 2y
See All 14 Comments
Booksnchill @britt_brooke you are so sweet- If I can figure out how to do a flamingo I‘ll let you know- they are kind of cool! Can‘t wait to see everyone tomorrow! 2y
erzascarletbookgasm These are gorgeous! 2y
AnneCecilie Love the pictures 2y
Booksnchill @AnneCecilie thanks- those are my pieces that I made during lockdown😷 2y
Booksnchill @erzascarletbookgasm thanks- i was trying mixed media with my watercolors and did the visitors to my yard during lockdown 2y
Kaylamburson Wow, these paintings are incredible! 2y
Booksnchill @Kaylamburson thanks- I am normally a watercolorist but did these mixed media so I would just play and have fun (edited) 2y
kspenmoll @Booksnchill you are so talented! I ❤️them! 2y
Booksnchill @kspenmoll how lovely to say, thank you🥰 2y
turtleliving These are beautiful! Do you sell your art somewhere? 2y
Booksnchill @turtleliving how nice of you to say- not online just locally as I am not productive enough to quit my day job!😁 2y
63 likes3 stack adds14 comments
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Morr_Books
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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More than halfway through #JubilantJuly. I think it is going well for me so far. Maybe I finally have my reading mojo back? @Andrew65

📚Read at least 24 hours = On hour 14.
📚Finish at least 3 books = Finished 2 books. Almost done with the tagged book.
📚Attend Virtual Book Club = Done.

Andrew65 That‘s great 😊👍 2y
27 likes1 comment
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Danjaq
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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The idea of an aimless aim, or a project with no goal, might sound familiar. Indeed, it sounds a bit like our old friend, the useless tree — who “achieves” nothing but witness, shelter, and unlikely endurance.

3 likes1 stack add
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ke1lbe1l
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

Although I doubt I‘ll ever connect with birds in my surroundings like the author has, there are other patterns and beings I can observe and learn from, and I appreciate all that I gain from slowing down when I garden or draw or just observing when I am walking my dog. The book itself is intriguing but I really enjoyed it because I learned of many other books, artists, and movements I want to research.

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geodynamical_nonfiction
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell

Bailed. Probably doesn't intrigue me because I boycotted social media forever ago.

Litsy doesn't count as social media because I only use it to track books.

Discord doesn't count either because I'm only on servers for productivity, accountability, and learning Python.

And NextDoor doesn't count either because I use it for neighborhood safety.

I choose not to spend time chatting online. Nature and real life connections matter to me more.

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geodynamical_nonfiction
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell

Wow. Right out the gate she is discussing liberalism, capitalism, and Trump.

Not what I was expecting from the title. Not at all.

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thatotherlisa
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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JamieArc I read that book of Buber‘s, and while I‘m sure much of it was over my head, there were some concepts that have really guided me and gave me a different perspective. 2y
4 likes1 comment
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JSW
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

This book is a philisophical meal for your brain. It's a game-changer for me, echoing things I've considered, while bringing up issues I hadn't. I love it, particularly now, in this moment, while we have a chance to rethink everything, and while we are forced to consider how we spend our time.

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AlexGeorge
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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“Could ‘augmented reality‘ simply mean putting your phone down?” I think I‘m going to love this book.

Lindy I adored this. While I found the long philosophical sentences hard to follow in print format, when I switched to the audiobook that worked so well that I‘ve listened to it twice. 2y
AlexGeorge Interesting! I‘m reading this one - pencil in hand. Perhaps I‘ll give it a listen afterwards! 2y
23 likes2 comments
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BronwynMahon
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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A good book for quarantine, but possibly even better for everything that comes after. #howtodonothing #selfisolationreads

batsy Yes! 2y
Blaire Yep. Perfect read for now and for reassessing when this is over. 2y
BronwynMahon @Blaire @batsy It‘s such a thoughtful book! I‘m really enjoying it! It really makes me miss my Bay Area homestead though! 2y
See All 8 Comments
rather_be_reading welcome to litsy 📚☕📚 #litsywelcomewagon 2y
RaimeyGallant Welcome! 2y
Eggs Welcome to Litsy 🥳🌹🥳 2y
Nute Definitely! Welcome to Litsy! It‘s a warm and friendly community. I know that you will enjoy yourself here. I‘m looking forward to getting to know you!🙂 2y
BronwynMahon @rather_be_reading @RaimeyGallant @Eggs @Nute Thank you all so much for the warm welcome!! 😘 2y
16 likes8 comments
review
smallthings
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

I took time with this book. It is packed with ideas, some of which resonated with me more some I didn't care about that much, especially in the later part of the book. But it filled me with calm which I really appreciate. And her approach to deal with social media not with restraining yourself but with finding something different to focus on gave me a lot to think about. Of course it's easier said than done - but definitely something worth trying.

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ManyWordsLater
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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This seems appropriate.

#selfquarantine #socialdistancing

51 likes1 stack add
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littlehoeontheprairie
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
Pickpick

🌹

SW-T Welcome to Litsy! #litsywelcomewagon 3y
Eggs Welcome to Litsy 🥳 3y
RaimeyGallant Welcome! 2y
4 likes3 comments
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ManyWordsLater
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Erinreadsthebooks That's a great stack! 3y
Megabooks Such a great stack!! 3y
Buechersuechtling Yeah, this feeling I know. 😄 Happy reading 📖, happy Sunday 🌈‼️ 2y
53 likes3 comments
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RowReads1
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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ljuliel Doggone , I thought that title was describing my life. I have been sitting on my Behind for so long ! Can‘t wait til warmer weather so I can get out of here and start walking again. 3y
RowReads1 @ljulie First response: why would I need that book. It‘s what I do already and am trying to fight against. 3y
42 likes3 stack adds2 comments
review
Floresj
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Pickpick

Excellent points and intriguing arguments are made in this slender book. It‘s definitely a reset against the attention economy (not just social media) and being “busy”. My complaint was some points were meandering and focused on art (which I know little about...but mostly art or bird examples were used). She‘s a great writer and obscenely intelligent- which you can see within her first sentence.

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WellReadCatLady
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Hour in and it‘s making some good points.

23 likes1 stack add
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ephemeralwaltz
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell
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Weaponxgirl I think you will like this one. 3y
55 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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BookladyOnTheMove
How to Do Nothing | Jenny Odell

Recommended by #GetBooked

2 likes1 stack add