Notes on a Nervous Planet (Matt Haig)
Synopsis (Goodreads): Rates of stress and anxiety are rising. A fast, nervous planet is creating fast and nervous lives. We are more connected, yet feel more alone. And we are encouraged to worry about everything from world politics to our body mass index.
– How can we stay sane on a planet that makes us mad?
– How do we stay human in a technological world?
– How do we feel happy when we are encouraged to be anxious?
After experiencing years of anxiety and panic attacks, these questions became urgent matters of life and death for Matt Haig. And he began to look for the link between what he felt and the world around him.
Notes on a Nervous Planet is a personal and vital look at how to feel happy, human and whole in the 21st century.
I’ve read Matt Haig’s Reasons to Stay Alive a couple of times and I love the voice that comes through – truthful, self-deprecating, and humorous. So when I saw Notes on a Nervous Planet in a bookstore recently, I surprised even myself with the restraint I showed by not buying the book, a blessing in disguise because I subsequently discovered that the author himself had narrated the audiobook version.
Matt Haig draws on personal experience and writes an important and timely book on how we can cope with living in a contradictory world where everything is increasingly connected but which succeeds in making millions feel increasingly isolated. With warmth and humour, he keeps you company on a journey in which you will meditate on your own interactions with the world around you, and on how you can survive and flourish in it.
The author recognises that change is constant, but that the rate of change is not. That change is not something that just happens by focusing on the place you want to escape, it happens by focusing on the place you want to reach as well. He highlights the importance of mindfulness and living in the present, about being happy with who you are and accepting that you are a work in progress. About creating spaces for yourself where you can breathe…and just be.
This is a book that is very different to Reasons to Stay Alive, but just as good, and just as important. My favourite piece of advice, and one that resonated deeply: Find a good book, sit down and read it. There will be times in your life when you are lost and confused; reading will help you re-establish your balance and find a way back.
I hope you read this one.
[…] my commute, something I think I have mentioned before. When I was listening to Matt Haig’s Notes on a Nervous Planet earlier this month, it was one of those books I couldn’t wait to listen to every morning, and I […]