The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F%ck by Mark Manson

Updated: Apr 25, 2019

Imagine that my favorite fictional character, Madea, writes a tell all mixed with self-help book…… Readers everywhere will shout, in her voice of course, Hallelujah-rdt!  Dear readers of any genre, GO PURCHASE THIS BOOK!  This book was a true eye opener for those of us who spend hours upon hours and dollars upon dollars, on self-help books and teachings.  I almost decided to just throw away all of my self-help books after reading this beauty.

So if the cover of this book doesn’t do anything for you, no worries, try taking this book out in public, or to a local wine shop as I did, and people will walk up to you instantly, and hold conversations with you about how either they’ve read the book, or gonna gain some courage and finally read it (in private or in public).

I personally enjoyed how the author, Mark Manson, really didn’t give a f%ck and inserted “f-bombs” almost on every page of this 210 paged book.  I really felt like I was sitting at a local bar having a somewhat, intellectual conversation with a close friend.  As you know, I’ve been making minor adjustments in my life to live better.  This book, will definitely make you appreciate the boldness in his words to articulate how one can ultimately live a good life by simply not giving a f%ck about things, thoughts and people who don’t matter….bottom line.

Of course, readers must be mindful that the author is not promoting violence, neglect or abuse towards the living and saying “It’s ok to knock your co-worker head off and don’t give a f%ck afterwards.”  PLEASE don’t do that!  Instead the author here is merely providing you with a different approach to how you view your life’s circumstances.  We’re all gonna face the inevitable someday.  We’re all gonna be lied to and tell lies too.  The difference in the art of not giving a f%ck is, learning that according to Manson, “….even failure pushes us forward.”

To admit failure, you have to admit that there is a problem.  Who generally wants to admit that?  Nobody.  But, as cliche as it sounds, there’s always a purpose from your pain.  Nobody that you will ever read about, will reach success and not have had to suffer from any pain or undergo several stories about their failures, first.  Manson, of course backed up this title with profound research from psychologists, sociologists, anthropologists, artists, playwrights and political views of past successful people, and of course, his own life experiences.

“The greatest truths in life are usually the most unpleasant to hear.” – Manson

I’d rather someone care enough about me to tell me the truth, than to feed me lies that will be hurtful, once the truth is exposed.  This book talked about how in the midst of our pain, it is in those moments that we begin to live and will become more aware of our limitations and will “do something” about it.  For example, during a painful divorce, a woman will either choose to never date/marry again, or she will choose to use that painful moment and once she’s healed and taken accountability in her failed marriage, will move on eventually and find her true love.

This book talked about the art of not giving a f%ck in all areas of your life not just in romantic relationships.   As an individual who is working on my dreams of becoming a full-time writer, this book helped me realize that I am on the right path, that I will endure some highs and some lows along this journey but thankfully people like Mark Manson, have been on this journey before and has shared tokens of wisdom with us readers.   This book is definitely in contrast to any other self-help books that tell you to basically “See it happening in your life and it will come to pass” type of teachings.  Nope, not this book!

I don’t even recall a chapter dedicated to focusing on having more money to become successful.  You know all self-help books now a days focus on how to make more money by doing steps 1, 2, and 3 things.  In this book, he only mentioned money stories that clearly stated the person who was chasing money to become happy was often miserable than the person who was simply doing what they enjoy doing.  That’s what I always ask myself, would I still enjoy writing if I was compensated for it?  Don’t get me wrong, I’ll enjoy any income I receive from my passions, but will it become less enjoyable all for the sake of the dollar value of it?

I won’t prolong this review by being a book spoiler, but I will say, again purchase this book and I promise you that you will look at your life and how you view it, differently.  In the end of the book,  Mason shared with us how a death experience of a dear friend, made him actually start living through that traumatic experience.  He no longer gave a f%ck about meaningless things and people but instead, got his sh%t together and is currently living an abundant life.

If you’ve read this book, what was the biggest takeaway for you?  Post your thoughts in the comments.