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Although this is an interesting book giving you a fair amount of scientific data about how the brain thrives on being at rest, the conclusions drawn seem quite week.
The author suggests that idleness, or not working so much, is needed in order to get into the brain states needed for creativity and mental renewal. This is very interesting, and the science is fascinating about how the brain works.
However, the overall argument—that because our brains need down-time, then we should not work so hard, be more idle, etc.—is taken too far. His "solution" to the "problem" seems weak, unsupported and underdeveloped. There is no practical advice given (though it could be as easy as taking more rest, reflecting more, meditating, not being in front of digital devices constantly), rather, the author offers more of just criticisms of working too much and living in a work-driven society.
Overall, not worth it. Though interesting overall.
What to take away: your brain thrives when you are at rest, idle, and chilled out. So don't think it's a bad thing to chill out—it's good for your brain and helps your creativity. That's all you need to know from this book, basically. The rest is jargon, scientific examples, and other filler.
48 of 53 people found this review helpful
What made the experience of listening to Autopilot the most enjoyable?
I buy quite many audiobooks in the genre of productivity, business, self-improvement and so on. This book is one of those rare few, that really made me listen. It will (already has) changed the way I see, and wanna live, my life.
In it, the author goes into detail about the neuroscience of ADHD, and introduces some quite novel concepts that were new to me. I've never encountered "stochastic resonance" before. Now I have.
It's a well-written book, super well narrated, and a book I can't wait to listen to again, from the beginning. It's like the focused version of Goleman's recent book Focus, which is a mishmash of anecdotes. Meanwhile, this book is clearly written by an individual who really thinks (!) about the stuff he writes about. No fluffy Gladwell / Heath brothers crap here.
In addition, I think the book points out some major problems of our modern society. Everyone should read this book.
What other book might you compare Autopilot to and why?
Your Brain at Work, which is another really great book that deserves more attention than most other books in the productivity genre.
41 of 49 people found this review helpful