Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Astral Codex Ten Podcast

Aug 7, 2022

Finalist #13 in the Book Review Contest

[This is one of the finalists in the 2022 book review contest. It’s not by me - it’s by an ACX reader who will remain anonymous until after voting is done, to prevent their identity from influencing your decisions. I’ll be posting about one of these a week for several months. When you’ve read them all, I’ll ask you to vote for a favorite, so remember which ones you liked - SA]


Imagine you find yourself, over the course of a few weeks or months, becoming steadily more tired. You’re not doing any more work or other activities than you usually do, but nonetheless you find that you are able to do less and less before running out of energy. You start to pick and choose your battles – do I really feel up to this gym session? Do I really need to go to this work function? – and little by little your world begins to shrink. The sense of exhaustion becomes more pervasive, and occurs from when you wake up until you go to sleep. Any exertion leads to you paying for it in a general worsening of exhaustion and malaise that makes you question whether the activity was worth it. Eventually, you learn your lesson and withdraw from even the most basic activities – sometimes you don’t get out of bed, have trouble feeding yourself, and find your thinking has become clouded and sluggish ( a phenomenon sometimes called ‘brain fog’). Sleep becomes difficult, activities become less enjoyable, and you find that you are restless and anxious despite spending almost all your time attempting to rest.