Book review - Looking after oneself

Speed Reading: Living well.

Be My Guest
Priya Basil

In Be my Guest Priya Basil’s explores the importance of hospitality and what it means to welcome strangers today. Basil has an Indian heritage, grew up in Kenya and Britain and currently lives in Berlin so is perfectly placed to reflect on food and family, identity and community. She touches on the work of Hannah Arendt, Helene Cixous, Jacques Derrida and Immanuel Kant and poignantly compares her relatively privileged life with that of many refugees who are unable to travel freely and enjoy few basic rights.

You’re not Listening: What you’re missing and why it matters
Kate Murphy
Harvill Secker

American journalist Kate Murphy believes that truly listening to someone allows us to “engage, understand, connect, empathise and develop as human beings.” But given the noise created by social media, fake news, and our marked social and political divisions, we’ve lost the art of listening. Murphy offers a timely reminder of how we could enrich our lives and relationships if we redoubled our efforts to listen to opposing views instead of always “liking” or retweeting opinions similar to our own. 

The Art of Rest
Claudia Hammond

Writer and broadcaster Claudia Hammond collaborated on ‘The Rest Test’, a global survey involving 18,000 people living in 135 different countries, and her book, hailed as “a call to rest”, is the result of her research. How do we unwind and calm our minds? Hammond believes proper rest “helps us to make better decisions, lowers our risk of depression, boosts our memories” and staves off colds. The findings are surprising: gardening and pets did not figure in the top ten activities the participants consider the most restful. Taking a hot bath does. The number one pastime for creating a restful sense of wellbeing? Reading. 

Orignally published by The Tablet