The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson
Mark Manson has created this self-help book for people who hate self-help books, doing away with the positive psychology obsession to instead give you a stoic, no bull approach to living a life that might not always be perfect.
Self-Help not through avoiding problems or always being happy, but rather engaging with and solving issues at the same time as learning to accept occasional periods of unhappiness.
The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck is a good yardstick by which all rational self-help books should be measured.
Designed for maximum exposure by its shock marketing approach “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck” is not just based around hype and getting attention.
When you get past the title you realise that you shouldn’t judge the content of this book based on its vulgarity as it has some great insights to offer.
Mark Manson outlines and highlights the fact that our 21st-century values are misplaced, putting too much emphasis on things that actually don’t hold value in our lives – and not enough emphasis on the things that are truly important to us.
When we focus on the wrong things, it drives us to miss out and not live a meaningful life that could be much more fulfilling.
On completing this book, I found myself piecing together some very valuable lessons that anyone can benefit from.
What are the main messages, and what lessons can we learn?
Here are the “9 Key Takeaways” from this book.
1. The Secret to Life is NOT Having the “Best” – “Being superficial and focusing on material things/goals in the end, will make you depressed and empty.”
2. Less Really IS More – “Caring more about what is true and the most important to you is what really leads to happiness.”
3. Comparisons are a Waste – “Comparing yourself constantly to others makes you feel like you are less and that you’re don’t offer as much value.”
4. Wanting Better Isn’t Making Us Better – “Appreciate the many wonderful things you do and have. In fact, what you have is already pretty awesome.”
5. Accepting Your Personal Experiences is SO Valuable – “Don’t overlook the personal experiences you have, don’t devalue them, life is truly what you make it.”
6. Stop Searching for Happiness and Realise It’s Already There – “Realise that we already have happiness in our lives, embrace it and stop searching.”
7. Negative Experiences are Valuable – “Embrace negative experiences, they actually help to guide us to bigger and better things.”
8. Stop Caring About “Fitting” In – “Embrace your individuality and it will guide you to true happiness.”
9. We’re All Going to Die Someday – “Stop focusing so much on trying to be perfect, or you’ll miss out on the only opportunity that you have to enjoy life.”
Chapter 1: Don’t Try
Chapter 2: Happiness is a Problem
Chapter 3: You Are Not Special
Chapter 4: The Value of Suffering
Chapter 5: You are Always Choosing
Chapter 6: You’re Wrong About Everything
Chapter 7: Failure is the Way Forward
Chapter 8: The importance of Saying No
Chapter 9: … And Then You Die
“The desire for more positive experience is itself a negative experience. And, paradoxically, the acceptance of one’s negative experience is itself a positive experience.”
“The key to a good life Is not giving a f*ck about more; it’s giving a f*ck about less, giving a f*ck about only what is true and immediate and important.”
“This is the most simple and basic component of life: our struggles determine our successes.”
“If you want to change how you see your problems, you have to change what you value and/or how you measure failure/success.”
“Being wrong opens us up to the possibility of change. Being wrong brings the opportunity for growth.”
Mark Manson (born 1984 in Austin, Texas) is a professional blogger, entrepreneur and former dating coach. He moved to Boston, Massachusetts, to study and graduated from Boston University with a degree in finance in 2007. Since then, he’s been helping people with their emotional and relationship problems. Manson started his first blog n 2009 as a marketing channel for his dating advice business and later shifted to blogging full-time as a digital nomad. He has worked with thousands of people from over 30 different countries.
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*Key Takeaways referenced from the following mellowed.com article.