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How overworked America can banish ‘busyness’ | New York Post

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The themes in this book — that of overwork, the attempt to balance work and family, the search for happiness — obviously all resonate with you personally. Was there a specific moment that made you realize, “I’m not the only one, and I need to write a book about this”?When I was caught up in it all, working crazy hours, I didn’t realize it. I was crazy guilty at home because I was working like that. I never stopped — I thought that’s the way life was because I chose to work, and that was my “punishment.” My “A-ha!” moment came when I was doing reporting for a story, and a time researcher told me I actually had 30 hours of leisure a week, I just didn’t realize it. I told him he was nuts.  So I wrote about this for the Washington Post Magazine and I got hundreds and hundreds of e-mails. They were long and impassioned, and there was so much sadness and rage. It was not just working mothers writing me — it was dads, and young people, and others setting out on their career paths and being scared of having families because there would never be enough time. Getting all those letters was my moment. One of them said, “You climbed into my head and you wrote about my life.”

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