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Jan 15

Jessica Recommends: Laziness Does Not Exist

Book Cover - Laziness Does Laziness Does Not Exist

Devon Price, PhD


Jessica says:

This book challenges the meaning of productivity or what it means to be ‘productive’ in today’s society. This author examines and unpacks the complexities and multi-faceted systems of self-worth. Specifically, in a society that often sends the message that:   (1) If a person is not overexerting themselves they are ‘lazy’; (2) That being ‘productive’ is more valuable than rest;  (3) That a person must ‘earn’ rest; and (4) That our worth is measured by our productive.


The author lists these indications that you may still be associating productivity with goodness:

  • When you get less done during the day than you anticipated, you feel guilty.
  • You have trouble enjoying your free time. -You believe you have to “earn” the right to a vacation or break.
  • You take care of your health only in order to remain productive.
  • Having nothing to do makes you feel “useless.”
  • You find the idea of growing old or becoming disabled to be incredibly depressing.
  • When you say no to someone, you feel compelled to say yes to something else to ‘make up’ for it.

This book will help to conceptualize and unlearn the arguably problematic systemic idea that a person’s worth is intrinsically associated with their production.

From the Publisher

From social psychologist Dr. Devon Price, a conversational, stirring call to “a better, more human way to live” (Cal Newport, New York Times bestselling author) that examines the “laziness lie”—which falsely tells us we are not working or learning hard enough.

Extra-curricular activities. Honors classes. 60-hour work weeks. Side hustles.

Like many Americans, Dr. Devon Price believed that productivity was the best way to measure self-worth. Price was an overachiever from the start, graduating from both college and graduate school early, but that success came at a cost. After Price was diagnosed with a severe case of anemia and heart complications from overexertion, they were forced to examine the darker side of all this productivity.

Laziness Does Not Exist explores the psychological underpinnings of the “laziness lie,” including its origins from the Puritans and how it has continued to proliferate as digital work tools have blurred the boundaries between work and life. Using in-depth research, Price explains that people today do far more work than nearly any other humans in history yet most of us often still feel we are not doing enough.

Filled with practical and accessible advice for overcoming society’s pressure to do more, and featuring interviews with researchers, consultants, and experiences from real people drowning in too much work, Laziness Does Not Exist “is the book we all need right now” (Caroline Dooner, author of The F*ck It Diet).

The Author

Dr. Devon Price is a social psychologist and professor at Loyola University of Chicago’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies. His work has appeared in SlateBusiness InsiderFinancial TimesHuffPostPsychology Today, and on NPR and PBS. He lives in Chicago, Illinois.

About Jessica Zaehringer

Jessica Zaehringer, LCSWJessica is a psychotherapist based in Chicago Illinois.  Her therapeutic approach is collaborative and relaxed.  I believe firmly in the power of connection – especially when it comes to healing. Her clinical expertise fosters the therapeutic relationship as well as self-forgiveness and creates a safe, empathic, trauma-informed space to work together with her clients.

…. Find out more about Jessica here.

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Jessica Zaehringer, LCSW

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