Review: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

What better way to start off the new year than by not giving a f*ck, am I right? I thought this would be the perfect book to start off 2019 and while it was pretty funny at times, and surprisingly smart (if not fully supportive of itself), I wouldn’t really call it profound or life-changing, and I certainly wouldn’t recommend it for everyone. Here’s the synopsis from Goodreads:

28259130In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be “positive” all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.

For decades, we’ve been told that positive thinking is the key to a happy, rich life. “F**k positivity,” Mark Manson says. “Let’s be honest, shit is f**ked and we have to live with it.” In his wildly popular Internet blog, Manson doesn’t sugarcoat or equivocate. He tells it like it is—a dose of raw, refreshing, honest truth that is sorely lacking today. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is his antidote to the coddling, let’s-all-feel-good mindset that has infected modern society and spoiled a generation, rewarding them with gold medals just for showing up.

Manson makes the argument, backed both by academic research and well-timed poop jokes, that improving our lives hinges not on our ability to turn lemons into lemonade, but on learning to stomach lemons better. Human beings are flawed and limited—”not everybody can be extraordinary, there are winners and losers in society, and some of it is not fair or your fault.” Manson advises us to get to know our limitations and accept them. Once we embrace our fears, faults, and uncertainties, once we stop running and avoiding and start confronting painful truths, we can begin to find the courage, perseverance, honesty, responsibility, curiosity, and forgiveness we seek.

There are only so many things we can give a f**k about so we need to figure out which ones really matter, Manson makes clear. While money is nice, caring about what you do with your life is better, because true wealth is about experience. A much-needed grab-you-by-the-shoulders-and-look-you-in-the-eye moment of real-talk, filled with entertaining stories and profane, ruthless humor, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is a refreshing slap for a generation to help them lead contented, grounded lives.

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not-a-single-fuck-was-given-memeThroughout the book, author Mark Manson quotes various psychologists, philosophers, and pop culture experts from the Buddha to Homer Simpson himself. Of course, Manson draws from personal experience as well, and he has quite a bit to share including illegal substances, the tragic loss of a close friend, and more. Just to leave you with a morsel of the book’s wisdom: “In my life, I have given a fuck about many people and many things. I have also not given a fuck about many people and many things. And like the road not taken, it was the fucks not given that made all the difference.” You’re welcome.

Book Soundtrack : “For a Pessimist, I’m Pretty Optimistic” by Paramore

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