The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck Book Summary

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Book – The subtle art of not a giving F*ck

Author – Mark Manson

Genre – Self-help Book

Published in – 2016

The subtle art of not giving a f*ck presents a different approach to leading a good life than many other self-help books I have read. It is incredible to read the counter system to what I have read and think of many things from a different perspective.

The book shows the mirror and gets us face to face with facing what we need to meet, hear what we need to hear, even though we never like it, yet crucially important to our growth, sanity, and happiness.

As I read the book, I felt like I was chatting with a friend and got good, blunt advice with humor.

About the Book –

Marks suggests that the key to a good life is not giving a f*ck more; it’s giving a f*ck less, giving a f*ck only what is accurate and immediate and vital.

The book explains how to focus and prioritize your thoughts effectively—how to pick and choose what matters to you and what is not based on finely honed personal values, which is not as simple as it sounds.

When Mark says don’t give a f*ck anything, he means to choose what you decide to give a f*ck, as we all have limited time here and can only offer a f*ck a few things.

Key Points From The Book

The book is full of advice and shares a beautiful perspective of looking at things that matter.

1) Happiness is the Problem-

  • Mark explains that thinking and waiting for something to come and we will be happy for good is a myth. Happiness comes from solving a problem and not from a free life.
  • Happiness is in solving the problem, coming to better situations, and not avoiding it. He says the happiness formula is “solve the problem; be happy.” But most people are in denial and victimhood mode all the time instead of solving the Problem.
  • Happiness is in the action, its form of activity. True happiness occurs only when you find the problems you enjoy having and solve them.

2) The Backward Law –

  • With the help of the backward law of Alan Watts, Mark explains that chasing and wanting happiness is to remain stuck in the wanting state. Enjoying a positive experience is a negative experience; accepting a negative experience is a positive experience.
  • Negative emotions are a call to action. It’s because you’re supposed to do something when you feel them. Positive emotions, on the other hand, are rewards for taking the proper action.

3) Self-awareness onion –

Mark explains self-awareness and different layers with a simple yet powerful example of an Onion. As there are different layers to the Onion, so is self-awareness.

  • Outer Layer – like what makes you feel good or bad.
  • The second Layer – asks why we feel the way we feel under any situation; these questions are comparatively more difficult to answer than the first.
  • The third and more profound full of tears is of our values. It takes time and ongoing effort to reach and deal with this Layer. As everything we are and do depends on it, dealing with the third Layer is of utmost importance.
  • We should start with one Layer at a time, and as we get better at knowing ourselves, We can handle deeper layers better.

4) Shitty Values –

  • With excellent examples, Mark has explained values and their role and how our life depends on them. It helped me look at things differently.
  • Values like pleasure, material success, being correct, and staying positive—are poor ideals for a person’s life. Some of the greatest moments of one’s life are not pleasant, successful, unknown, or positive.
  • Our priorities will depend on what we value more – immediate pleasure or long-term happiness. What values we prioritize over other values will define our flow of life and how content we will be.

5) Choices We Make –

  • We all, deep down, know that we constantly make choices. When we pick problems on our own, we are empowered by them, and when issues are forced on us, we feel victimized.
  • Whether we like it or not, we are always active in what’s occurring to and within us.

6) The Responsibility/Fault Fallacy –

  • I loved the line from the book – Many people may be to blame for your unhappiness, but nobody but you is ever responsible for your sorrow.
  • Mark explains that we can find fault in every situation or person, take responsibility, and improve things. Putting Spider-Man Movie quote, “With great power comes great responsibility,” in a reverse way, “With great responsibility comes great power.”

7) Do Something Principle –

  • Mark suggests doing something about problems by quoting his math teacher, Mr. Packwood: “If you’re stuck on a problem, don’t sit there and think about it; just start working on it. Even if you don’t know what you’re doing, working on it will eventually cause the right ideas to appear in your head.”
  • This line sums it up doing something principle well – Action isn’t just the effect of motivation; it’s also the cause of it.

I have also created a video of a few quotes from the book – I hope you like it. Please subscribe to my YouTube channel – Myread4change.

Conclusion –

This is one of the best books I have read lately, which made me think and question my point of view on many things, like how I pursue my goals and problems.

I strongly recommend this book. You will get a lot to ponder and, more importantly, ask questions that will make you think about what you give a f*ck about?

If you like this book, you may also want to Think Straight.

Leave your suggestions/feedback for this review in the comment, or if you have any questions, I will gladly answer them.

I wish you a great life.


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