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

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I’ve read quite a bit about self-help, self-improvement, finding your true self, healing yourself etc. In fact, I didn’t realize how much until reading this book.

Chapters 1-4 had me smiling. The simplicity of the writing combined with the stark, honest tone offers a refreshing take on a theme so many people claim to be experts on. At no point does Manson claim expertise in any of the areas he highlights which is a nice way of interacting with his reader because the decision is always left in the reader’s hands.

The honesty is a no-holds barred delivery of the mistakes he has made in his own life – and this continues throughout the book. I had two reactions to this approach.

I felt that it worked well because he intermingles all of the stories of his own pitfalls with the stories of other rather well-known personalities, plenty of solid research and a really sound basis for his views on modern living and how it should be approached in order to live a balanced lifestyle.

By the end of the book, however, I felt like I had just read Manson’s personal journey of self-discovery rather than be allowed to use his advice to have one of my own. This isn’t necessarily a knock on the book. It was just how I reacted.

The not give a f*ck attitude of the book is really strong in the opening chapters. The swearing is abundant; however, it does taper off. The edge of his attitude isn’t quite so sharp in the second half of the book. And, it begins to read a little like a traditional self-improvement book, with a few f*cks thrown in so one doesn’t forget the spicy title.

Overall, I found Manson’s book entertaining and an easy read. His anecdotes and stories were very interesting and painted a great picture for the points he wished to drive home.

I do feel he has much to offer people in terms of finding a less stressful way to live life. He is an advocate for gratitude, for making conscious choices, for learning to fail and learning to say no. His writing style is fun, lively and he really is a great storyteller, using that skill to reel us in for the real purpose of his chapters: to show a better way to approach modern living.

If you’re looking for a book to inspire a little change in your life, to spark you to live your life a little differently, this just might be the book to do that.

Have you read Manson’s book? Would love to hear your reactions!

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