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Publisher's Summary

Brought to you by Penguin. 

The average human lifespan is absurdly, outrageously, insultingly brief: if you live to 80, you have about 4,000 weeks on Earth. How should we use them best?

Of course, nobody needs telling that there isn't enough time. We're obsessed by our lengthening to-do lists, our overfilled inboxes, the struggle against distraction and the sense that our attention spans are shrivelling. Yet we rarely make the conscious connection that these problems only trouble us in the first place, thanks to the ultimate time-management problem: the challenge of how best to use our 4,000 weeks.

Four Thousand Weeks is an uplifting, engrossing and deeply realistic exploration of this problem that draws on philosophy, literature and psychology to cover the past, present and future of our battles with time. It goes far beyond practical tips, and its many revelations will transform the listener's world view.

Drawing on the insights of ancient philosophers, Benedictine monks, artists and authors, Scandinavian social reformers, renegade Buddhist technologists and many others, Oliver Burkeman sets out to realign our relationship with time - and in doing so, to liberate us from its grasp.

©2021 Oliver Burkeman (P)2021 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about Four Thousand Weeks

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If I could read only one book for the rest of my life…

…then this book would be the one I’d choose.

Wonderful work, I can’t wait to start listening it again!

Very much enjoyed how the author has put in the work to really understand the subject and draw meaningful conclusions. And all of it in a nicely distilled fashion, without wasting reader’s time.

Seriously, this book is next level and you’re pretty much guaranteed to find a new perspective on your life.

My sincere thanks to the author for sharing your work with the world!

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Incredible!!

A truly important message. Oliver Burkeman has explained something that should be common knowledge, then expanded on it, and has done so in such an eye-opening way. This is a topic that normally gets grazed over from time to time, while 4000 Weeks in an opportunity to get fully immersed in that which needs far more attention in our society today. This is over 5 hours of "Ah ha" moments. I've already bought it for three people, and I'll be listening to and reading it many more times I'm sure. Hands down the most helpful book I've come across.

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I loved it.

there is so much great advice in this book. I can describe it with 2 words - stress relieve!

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An absolute must read for 2022.

Easy and engaging style, well narrated.
The author proposes that how we think about time and consequently use our time, suffer from some misconceptions that truly get us nowhere happy or fulfilled. And as the misconceptions are deeply embedded in the society, it's pretty difficult to figure them out on your own.
It's an eye opener. Maybe because I'm 40, what he says resonates deeply with what I've been thinking, experiencing and trying to change. It might be different for someone in their 20s- but ach, all the frustration I might have avoided in the 1st place if I had read this 15 years ago.
The concepts are philosophical but some practical ideas are there too. The author doesn't come up with a ready to go solution, but you'd be silly to expect that. A different way of looking at things and some practical tips to get you started will take you a long way if you're willing. That's what the book offers. The rest of the process is up to you.

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One of the most important books I’ve ever read

This book is surprisingly poignant and insightful. What a treat! A big and heartfelt thank you to Oliver.

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Life-changing Book

Best book I've read for the last 5 years! It really puts things into perspective and gives a sense of freedom and calmness. Highly recommended!

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You will never have time

Oliver, you nailed it. This is #1 of my 2021 list .
It is the book to read during xmass holidays. Perfect for self reflection.

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Sublime!

Maybe the best audiobook I have ever listened to! Absolutely wonderful and I recommend this book to anyone.

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  • JC
  • 11-14-21

Hard work

Let me start with the major positive - Oliver Burkeman should be asked to narrate every audio book on Audible. His speaking voice is a real pleasure to listen to!

Sadly the book itself just wasn't for me. I'm not quite sure what I was expecting but found myself half way through it with my mind continually wandering off and thinking about other things. I would have expected to have gleamed at least a few take aways from any book by that stage but unfortunately there was nothing. Maybe this is more the kind of book you just listen to and don't taken anything away from, but for that I would prefer to go down the route of fiction.

The author comes across as a highly intelligent individual and maybe I just couldn't grasp where he was trying to lead the listener with his take on our finite lives. From the other reviews its clear that some found a better understanding of what he was saying, however, for me I found it a real slog and ..... well, life's just too short for doing something you don't want to do (ha, maybe I did take something from the book!)

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  • valleywriter
  • 08-27-21

Clever, thought-provoking and reassuring

I really enjoyed this audiobook. The author reads it really well, which only adds to the well-written and useful content. I also found it reassuring that the way I naturally find myself living my life is probably exactly right for me. I always felt a bit concerned that I could never follow the advice of productivity gurus; now I understand why!

21 people found this helpful

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  • Eva Gkenakou
  • 09-29-21

Lower your expectations because life is short

Lower your expectations because life is short. That’s what the book tells us for more than 6 hours, the way I heard it. It’s true to a certain extend and good to be reminded that we won’t accomplish absolutely everything but not sure we need a whole book about it…Excellent narration by the author and good use of humour.

17 people found this helpful

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  • Dr Halsley
  • 08-30-21

4000 weeks

I enjoyed this short little book. Burkeman makes a lot of good points and turns a few common conceptions of time and productivity on their heads. Just like the stoics, he argues that it is because of our finite time that our days are meaningful at all. Definitely give it a listen!

15 people found this helpful

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  • Shaun Daly
  • 09-29-21

Terrific!

As a failed self-improver for around 40 years, this was a strangely enjoyable tour through past pain and confusion, topped off with sound alternative advice to traditional time management at the end. I've 'read' almost 100 audiobooks over the last 18 months or so and this is my new favourite (just pipping "Ten Rules for Talking")

14 people found this helpful

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  • Johansen
  • 10-03-21

Limited amount of information

Limited amount of information in many words. Important topic. Good attempt to send the message.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Gal Tsvet
  • 01-03-22

Well researched and wonderfully delivered

I usually take half an hour to compose a review (that's why I've only ever written a few), carefully wording it, double checking etc. I'm taking Oliver's advice here - "the only [reviews] that count are the ones we actually [write]" and I'm leaving this quick one here. It feels good!

9 people found this helpful

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  • Lin Lee
  • 12-23-21

A wise, interesting and modern take on time

This book is an exposition on the problem of time as considered by philosophers, mystics, scientists through the ages. However, it also a commentary on modernity, how it perceives time, and how this time impact on the way we perceive and live our lives. It does offer specific and concrete prescriptions to the problem of time. I am not in a position to comment on these yet as I have not implemented them, but they do sound relatively straightforward and promising in terms of possibility of success. The broader points of this book, about how ultimately the shortness of life (ie limited time) is the central problem of this life, and how we will never do most of the things we dream to do, have already been very helpful for me to be more present with my kids and be more relaxed in these busy and stressful holiday times.

9 people found this helpful

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  • kate
  • 12-19-21

Absolutely wonderful

Loved this so much. Thank you Oliver.
I read and listen to loads of books and this one was an absolute stand out. I will definitely return to it. And I will definitely gift it too.

9 people found this helpful

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  • DrSyd
  • 12-16-21

One of the most important books you can read

It’s a great perspective on a modern challenge with some genuine, new ideas that could change the way you live. We have been kidding ourselves for too long and it’s time for a re-think x

7 people found this helpful

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  • Lore
  • 11-05-21

Loved this ! So liberating

Best advice for life I have read for ages, my new bible . Easy to listen, understand, practice.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-22-21

Made me think & I now I don't care.

Starts off good, gets a little predicable in the middle and finishes off very thought provoking.

1 person found this helpful

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  • E. Stamatakis
  • 10-23-21

The best time management book out there. Not

Well, this astonishingly good book is about time, but not about time management in its traditional sense. A thoroughly enjoyable and interesting read/listen whose quality is enhanced by the author's beatiful narration.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anon
  • 09-16-21

I will be listening to this again many times

I have always loved Oliver’s books but I think this is his best! A book full of wise gems.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-11-21

One of the most meaningful things I have ever read

This boom landed at just the right time in my life, my son turning just two, and my joy of growing by the day.

I have said becoming a parent has been a dance with my former self. I seemed to be resisting what I meant to be a parent. I tried to do all things things, and be there all time time for my son. I set the impossible, as time does not relent.

The perspective on time this book has given me, is just the tonic I need to be the very person my son needs me to be.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Diego M.
  • 01-09-22

Best book I've listened to in 2021

Deep. Philosophical. Actionable. Speaks to the deepest level within yourself.

if you can only listen to one non-fiction book this year, this is it. Well worth a week of your life. It will enhance the rest of them.

The author has a very soothing voice. The last two chapters are a glorious way to end this amazing piece of work.

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  • ConstantReader
  • 01-09-22

Entertaining and thought provoking

Very enjoyable and easy to listen to. The author pulls together many different philosophies and viewpoints to create a contemporary and non dogmatic position for living your best life. I have several points that I’ve taken note of and will revisit the last few chapters once I’ve had enough time to reflect.
I’d recommend this to anyone who has reached a place in life where they wish to reflect and regroup .

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-04-22

turns time management in its head

a fantastic and refreshingly unique on time, our relationship to it, and how to reframe your life to limit the overwhelming sense of a lack of it.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-29-21

A must read in this day and age

Definitely going to revisit this one many times. Perfect book for the "busy" professional.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-27-21

Important read

This book is a beautiful and important reminder of our relationship with time and the meaning and significant impact it has on the quality of our lives.