I just got back from a resort in Playa del Carmen, which had a beautiful beach, plenty of food/booze, and a ton of old people. I was surrounded by James Patterson novels and cataracts. Meanwhile, I read The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life* and took the snide looks in stride, not giving a single f*ck.
I am wary of self-help books, especially ones with bright orange covers that claim to be super chill. I’m happy to say that while this book is self-helpy, it’s not the insufferable kind. Mark Manson, the author, poses some questions that I had never before asked myself. He had me doing a mental health double-take. There are some “duh” moments, but he adds twists that make self-improvement more accessible and navigable.
Last year, I read The Power of Habit and, while I respect the book’s well-researched theories about forming and breaking habits, it all sounded like a ton of work. You know when you want to change some things but you only want to put in minimal effort? I’m lazy! And I’m not sure I want to change that just yet.
The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck is less scientific and more opinionated, but I still find Mark Manson's advice helpful and applicable. Like… I’ve actually been trying some of his approaches. Here’s a lil taste of his perspective: Everyone is wrong all of the time--growth is about becoming a little less wrong. Give fewer f*cks. We are responsible for every single thing in our lives-- the good and the bad. Commitment paradoxically gives you freedom.
I can't help but wonder-- what makes him qualified to talk about any of this? I mean, the guy is 35; it's not like he’s drawing from a well of experience. But whatever, who cares? He has opinions on how to live a meaningful life and it seems to work for him. What’s the worse that can happen-- I take his advice and spend some time reflecting on my values? The horror!
We're all just trying out best out here, right? Manson (no relation to Charles... I think) provides a new lens with which to try your best. And he's funny at times. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck receives 3 out of 5 camel humps.
*Manson, Mark. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life. New York: HarperCollins, 2016. Print.