Enough Book Summary By John Naish

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Enough is a surprising new book that takes the reader through an eye-opening journey about the drawbacks of our obsession with ‘more’.

Through compelling biological and psychological studies, it makes the case that chasing after “more” has an unexpected sting—leading to unhappiness and disappointment.

This book provides readers with a profound understanding of why having enough is the key to achieving happiness and contentment.

Enough Book

Book Name: Enough (Breaking free from the World of Excess)

Author(s): John Naish

Rating: 4.2/5

Reading Time: 18 Minutes

Categories: Economics

Author Bio

John Naish is an esteemed journalist and author from the United Kingdom.

He is a veteran of the London Times, where he covers matters of health, body and soul with incredible insight.

He has also written several provocative books, including Put What Where: 2000 Years of Bizarre Sex Advice.

His latest work is Enough: Rediscovering Joy in Simplicity.

Through his research and expertise, John encourages readers to find greater joy through simplicity and minimalism.

The Shocking Consequences Of Our Constant Need For More: Exploring The Culture Of Excess


In Enough, John Naish makes a compelling case that the relentless pursuit of “more” in the western world is having serious detrimental effects on both ourselves and our planet.

He explains how our desire for more stuff – information, food, decorations, and other material goods – has led to an increase in obesity, depression and financial debt as well as environmental damage caused by overconsumption.

He explains how this becomes an insidious cycle which can become almost impossible to break free from, leading to long-term suffering for all involved.

Naish also shows why it’s important to reevaluate our relationship with external goods and strive for what he calls ‘enoughness’: finding contentment in simpler things, cultivating relationships instead of material possessions, and valuing experiences rather than objects.

He provides concrete advice on how we can achieve this goal, helping us create a better future for ourselves and the world around us.

Our Ancestral Legacy Makes Us Consume More Than We Need: How Advertisers Exploit Ancient Human Instincts

When faced with an abundance of material and non-material goods, humans are designed to consume as much as possible.

This is the result of an evolutionary adaptation that enabled us to survive periods of scarcity.

Advertisers can cleverly exploit these ancient motivations when it comes to marketing their products.

Through tactics such as limited editions or expensive celebrity-endorsed items, they effectively tap into our instinctual impulse to collect resources and knowledge, as well as a desire for emulation.

As a result, we often end up buying things that we don’t actually need – falling prey to our own evolutionary history.

The Dangers Of Information Overload And How To Follow A Data Diet

We are bombarded with information every single day, and it can be overwhelming.

It is estimated that 10 million spam emails are sent daily around the globe alone!

This waste of our time on these unnecessary communication causes us to suffer from a condition known as Information Fatigue Syndrome (IFS).

IFS has been identified by British neuroscientist Dr.

David Lewis who believes that too much information overload can lead to exhaustion, insomnia, clouded decision-making ability, and even temporarily lower your IQ.

Not only does the excess of data affect us mentally but also physically; studies suggest that watching screens creating information overload, such as TV’s and computers, may increase attention problems and depression in children while also increasing their chances of obesity.

Moreover, we become so reliant on virtual information that upon withdrawal from it we experience real symptoms which can ultimately be classified as an addiction.

It has become much easier to dispense an email than face-to-face discussion or play video games than kick a ball around in a park with friends – all this being delivered virtually.

How Our Modern Attitude Towards Food Is Undermining Our Health


The abundance of food today has directly caused a slew of health problems due to its contribution to problematic eating habits.

Our natural preference for fatty and sugary foods, of course, gives us the necessary energy for survival when resources are limited– but what happens when that mentality is carried over into an excess of food today?

Eating more than we should because of this leads to an excessive amount being stored as fat in our bodies.

The result? One out of four people in developed countries such as Europe, Australia and North America already experience obesity, which puts them at risk for diseases like heart disease, diabetes and cancer.

It’s known that people rely on visual clues to guide their consumption rather than relying on actual hunger levels.

A great example would be a study that invited students to a dinner with continuously refilling bowls – the eaters didn’t appear too full since their bowls were full, causing them to actually consume more than they originally anticipated!

Why We’Re Driven To Consume More Than We Need

The relentless craze for the latest materials among many people today is a sign of discontentment and unhappiness.

This can be attributed to our genetic pre-disposition to archive and collect as much as possible, something that archaeologists have confirmed with their discovery of numerous hand-axes in neolithic caves.

Our urge to acquire material objects often leads us to search endlessly until we make a purchase, as it triggers our brains to release the hormone dopamine which brings excitement.

However, once the transaction has been made, we usually regret it and set out on another shopping spree in order to re-experience the feeling of euphoria before.

In addition to this, we are drawn towards materials because deep-down we strive for self-improvement which is associated with owning certain items such as a sports car or yacht.

As much as they might briefly bring joy, it’s often short-lived and doesn’t provide everlasting satisfaction from within.

The Dangers Of Workaholism: Why Overworking Only Leads To Unhappiness

Work has become our new addiction.

In Europe and the US, workaholism is a growing phenomenon, with people viewing their jobs as a sign of success and virtue.

But this hard-working lifestyle isn’t healthy.

Studies have revealed that regularly working more than 41 hours per week increases the risk of high blood pressure.

In fact, it’s become so serious that there are now programs dedicated to treating workaholism just like any other addiction, such as Workaholics Anonymous in Britain.

The reason we overwork ourselves is different from any other addiction: workaholics think that by working more they’ll feel better, but the reality is far from it.

Even if people get promotions or make it to Forbes’ list – these successes do not truly lead to greater happiness or life satisfaction.

So why keep striving for it? That answer lies in the struggles that many go through in their personal relationships at home; many turn to work as an escape from emotional issues which can be too difficult to confront directly.

Overworking may not save a collapsing marriage, but for some it can offer temporary relief.

It’s clear that working longer doesn’t do us any favors; unfortunately we still live in a society where pushing yourself beyond your limits is seen as noble and necessary for success – but this could not be further from the truth!

It’s time to break out of this mindset and realize that enough truly is enough; overworking yourself only leads to unhappiness or worse – illness!

The Jean Buridan’s Donkey Paradox: How Too Much Choice Leaves Us Unsatisfied And Unable To Commit

Jean Buridan's

We live in an age of seemingly limitless options.

No matter what we are looking for – whether it’s a camera or a new relationship – we are presented with so many choices, and expected to choose the best one for us.

But this search for the perfect choice can be paralyzing and leave us unable to make any decision at all.

This overabundance of choice has serious consequences on our behavior.

We jump from job to job, from apartment to apartment, unable (or unwilling) to commit for longer periods of time.

We no longer look for life-long partners; instead opting for bridging relationships that may evolve into more permanent ones, “as long as our marriage shall serve the common good.”

The thought-experiment posed centuries ago by Jean Buridan still holds true today: If given too many similar choices, we just might become so paralyzed by indecision that we will eventually die of hunger—a metaphor for how the endless search for perfection through comparison can make us miserable.

The Realistic Value Of Unhappiness: Why We Should Embrace Caution And Pessimism For A Longer, More Fulfilling Life

Infinite happiness is neither possible, healthy nor desirable.

Studies have consistently shown that too much optimism can lead to taking unnecessary risks that could put you into trouble.

Meanwhile, having a balanced attitude of depressive realism can actually help us thrive and live longer.

Unhappiness serves as an important sign when things aren’t going well in life- it’s not a failure but rather should be used as an opportunity for reflection.

Our obsession with seeking out perpetual joy is also misguided given how little influence we actually have over our level of felicity- everyone has their own unique happiness threshold established by genetics and childhood experiences.

Surprisingly, even major life changes such as winning the lottery or experiencing a tragedy provide only short-term alterations to our overall level of joy or despair instead of leaving lasting results in the long run according to studies.

We must accept that total contentment isn’t possible if we wish to make use of our sadness as a signal and grow from it.

Rejecting Infinite Economic Growth In Favor Of Sustainable Consumption Habits Is Harder Than It Sounds

We’ve been so busy chasing the idea of infinite economic growth that we never stopped to consider if it’s even possible.

Turns out, it isn’t.

John Maynard famously put forth the idea that economic growth could end starvation and allow everybody to meet their basic needs way back in the early 20th century.

Since then, politicians have been pushing policies based on this impossible goal of infinite growth.

In 1970, The Club of Rome published a book that highlighted our rapidly-growing population as a major contributor to the planet’s problems with resources.

They concluded that since Earth’s resources are not infinite, economic growth would always be limited – leaving us with no more than fairy tales about ideal never-ending wealth and prosperity.

Today, we understand more than ever before how much the current state of our economic system relies on the ideology of unending growth.

Businesses continue to spend tremendous resources encouraging people to consume more rather than less – regardless of how detrimental this is for our environment and fragile ecosystem.

As a result, massive sections of society don’t make meaningful changes in their habits because they believe what other people do or think is right – otherwise known as herd behavior.

The Danger Of Thinking More Is Better – And How Gratitude, Generosity, And Connectedness Improve Our Lives

Our Lives

It’s an undeniable fact that all the material things we have in our lives can never be enough.

We all know that no matter how much money or possessions we accumulate, it will never bring us true and lasting happiness.

This is why it’s so important to recognize that when it comes to certain nonmaterial things, there’s such a thing as not having enough.

For example, studies have proven that gratitude and generosity are two of the most life-changing nonmaterial things we can experience.

Gratitude has been linked to higher levels of optimism and energy as well as healthier hearts.

Generosity has been found to activate the same brain regions as receiving money or meeting friends—so in giving something, you are inadvertently increasing your own happiness!

Similarly, social connectedness and communication with others has been tied to greater contentment and even longevity.

We must constantly strive for deeper connections with friends, family members and higher forces in order to achieve holistic wellness!

Moreover, keeping our focus on the present rather than expecting excessive results from either the past or future can help us feel more connected with the here-and-now.

In conclusion, while many material possessions don’t make us fullfilled in the long run; if cultivated correctly, some amazing nonmaterial things can provide immense joy throughout our lives!

We Must Adopt A Concept Of Enoughness In Order To Challenge The Assumptions Underpinning Our Culture Of Excess

If we want to make a meaningful change in our culture of excess, we need to tackle some taboos head-on.

We can start by questioning the assumptions that underlie our current system, such as the assumption that pursuing continuous economic growth is the only way forward.

At the same time, we need to address difficult topics like population control.

It’s no longer sufficient to just ignore it in favour of materialism and capitalist ideals of success; we have to have meaningful conversations on how best to handle our growing population and its consequent effects.

Finally, it’s time for us to fully embrace the concept of enoughness – ditching our constant striving for more information, possessions and options in favour of cherishing what we already have and focusing on self-enrichment rather than materialism.

All these changes must come from within each individual so that we can lead by example and set off a ripple effect in society – small actions matter!

Wrap Up

In Enough: The True Power of Less Living, author Andrew Caitlin weaves together the stories of people who have used their own understanding of excess in their lives to their advantage.

Through this book, Andrew makes it clear that if we’re able to recognize and embrace better what enough means, then we can improve our mental and physical well-being as well as protect our environment.

We need to break free from our addiction to ‘more’ and realize how much better life can be when we focus on the quality of things rather than the quantity.

Enough will equip you with all the tools and insights you need to make these necessary changes in your life.

Arturo Miller

Hi, I am Arturo Miller, the Chief Editor of this blog. I'm a passionate reader, learner and blogger. Motivated by the desire to help others reach their fullest potential, I draw from my own experiences and insights to curate blogs.

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