“The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”


#1 on the New York Times Bestseller List.  Over one million copies sold.  I couldn’t help but buy the book to check it out.  But before we start with the book, let’s look at a far older excerpt.

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.”

And this excerpt from The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life:

“The problem is that giving too many f*cks is bad for your mental health.  It causes you to become overly attached to the superficial and fake, to dedicate your life to chasing a mirage of happiness and satisfaction.  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.

Thoughts?  The first passage is Philippians 4:8.  Paul is writing to the people of Philippi and encouraging them to focus on the good: whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy.  Now Manson’s passage, says to focus on less, not more: focus on what is true, immediate, and important.  Duh, entirely different delivery, but I think sometimes, all it takes is a soft whisper in our ear to get a point across, and other times we need a sledgehammer over the head.  Did I really just use a bible verse in a review about a book that has f*ck in the title?  Yes I did.  When I read that line in Manson’s book, that was the first thing that popped into my head, and I think it’s an interesting comparison.

Would I recommend this book?  Yes, as long as you do not mind colorful language.  Manson does an excellent job of using historical stories and psychological studies to hammer home his points.  Basically, problems are part of life.  Happiness does not come from lack of problems, but rather solving those problems.  And in order to be happy, we need to have good, healthy metrics and values on which to base our lives.  He also has great insights into the epidemic plaguing this nation right now… entitlement.

Some of my favorite lines:

  • “When people measure themselves not by their own behavior, but by the status symbols they’re able to collect, then not only are they shallow, but they’re probably a**holes as well.”
  • “People who are terrified of what others think about them are actually terrified of all the sh*tty things they think about themselves being reflected back on them.”
  • “Outrage is like a lot of other things that feel good but over time devour us from the inside out.  And it’s even more insidious than most vices because we don’t acknowledge that it’s a pleasure.”
  • “Certainty is the enemy of growth.”

I found this book to be helpful and a fun, easy read.  He has a very interesting perspective, is insightful, and doesn’t take himself too seriously.  And it’s only 200 pages, so you’re not committing yourself to a tome or anything.  I would love to hear you thoughts if you’ve already read it.  And I would especially love to hear your thoughts after you read it, if this little book report of mine inspired the read.

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2 thoughts on ““The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck”

  1. Pingback: “The Nightingale” | Blessed AF

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