The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck

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CONTENTS

CHAPTER 1: Don’t Try The Feedback Loop from Hell The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck So Mark, What the Fuck Is the Point of This Book Anyway?

CHAPTER 2: Happiness Is a Problem The Misadventures of Disappointment Panda Happiness Comes from Solving Problems Emotions Are Overrated Choose Your Struggle

CHAPTER 3: You Are Not Special Things Fall Apart The Tyranny of Exceptionalism B-b-b-but, If I’m Not Going to Be Special or Extraordinary, What’s the Point?

CHAPTER 4: The Value of Suffering The Self-Awareness Onion Rock Star Problems Shitty Values Defining Good and Bad Values

CHAPTER 5: You Are Always Choosing The Choice The Responsibility/Fault Fallacy Responding to Tragedy Genetics and the Hand We’re Dealt Victimhood Chic There Is No “How”

CHAPTER 6: You’re Wrong About Everything (But So Am I) Architects of Our Own Beliefs Be Careful What You Believe The Dangers of Pure Certainty Manson’s Law of Avoidance Kill Yourself How to Be a Little Less Certain of Yourself

CHAPTER 7: Failure Is the Way Forward The Failure/Success Paradox Pain Is Part of the Process The “Do Something” Principle

CHAPTER 8: The Importance of Saying No Rejection Makes Your Life Better Boundaries How to Build Trust Freedom Through Commitment

CHAPTER 9: . . . And Then You Die Something Beyond Our Selves The Sunny Side of Death

Acknowledgments

About the Author

Credits

Copyright

About the Publisher

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When most people envision giving no fucks whatsoever, they imagine a kind of serene indifference to everything, a calm that weathers all storms. They imagine and aspire to be a person who is shaken by nothing and caves in to no one. There’s a name for a person who finds no emotion or meaning in anything: a psychopath. Why you would want to emulate a psychopath, I have no fucking clue.

So what does not giving a fuck mean? Let’s look at three “subtleties” that should help clarify the matter. Subtlety #1: Not giving a fuck does not mean being indifferent; it means being comfortable with being different. Let’s be clear. There’s absolutely nothing admirable or confident about indifference. People who are indifferent are lame and scared. They’re couch potatoes and Internet trolls. In fact, indifferent people often attempt to be indifferent because in reality they give way too many fucks. They give a fuck about what everyone thinks of their hair, so they never bother washing or combing it.

They give a fuck about what everyone thinks of their ideas, so they hide behind sarcasm and self-righteous snark. They’re afraid to let anyone get close to them, so they imagine themselves as some special, unique snowflake who has problems that nobody else would ever understand. Indifferent people are afraid of the world and the repercussions of their own choices. That’s why they don’t make any meaningful choices. They hide in a gray, emotionless pit of their own making, selfabsorbed and self-pitying, perpetually distracting themselves from this unfortunate thing demanding their time and energy called life. Because here’s a sneaky truth about life. There’s no such thing as not giving a fuck. You must give a fuck about something. It’s part of our biology to always care about something and therefore to always give a fuck.

The question, then, is, What do we give a fuck about? What are we choosing to give a fuck about? And how can we not give a fuck about what ultimately does not matter? My mother was recently screwed out of a large chunk of money by a close friend of hers. Had I been indifferent, I would have shrugged my shoulders, sipped my mocha, and downloaded another season of The Wire. Sorry, Mom. But instead, I was indignant. I was pissed off. I said, “No, screw that, Mom. We’re going to lawyer the fuck up and go after this asshole. Why? Because I don’t give a fuck.

I will ruin this guy’s life if I have to.” This illustrates the first subtlety of not giving a fuck. When we say, “Damn, watch out, Mark Manson just don’t give a fuck,” we don’t mean that Mark Manson doesn’t care about anything; on the contrary, we mean that Mark Manson doesn’t care about adversity in the face of his goals, he doesn’t care about pissing some people off to do what he feels is right or important or noble. We mean that Mark Manson is the type of guy who would write about himself in third person just because he thought it was the right thing to do. He just doesn’t give a fuck. This is what is so admirable. No, not me, dumbass—the overcoming adversity stuff, the willingness to be different, an outcast, a pariah, all for the sake of one’s own values. The willingness to stare failure in the face and shove your middle finger back at it. The people who don’t give a fuck about adversity or failure or embarrassing themselves or shitting the bed a few times. The people who just laugh and then do what they believe in anyway. Because they know it’s right. They know it’s more important than they are, more important than their own feelings and their own pride and their own ego. They say, “Fuck it,” not to everything in life, but rather to everything unimportant in life. They reserve their fucks for what truly matters. Friends. Family. Purpose. Burritos.

And an occasional lawsuit or two. And because of that, because they reserve their fucks for only the big things that matter, people give a fuck about them in return. Because here’s another sneaky little truth about life. You can’t be an important and life-changing presence for some people without also being a joke and an embarrassment to others. You just can’t. Because there’s no such thing as a lack of adversity. It doesn’t exist. The old saying goes that no matter where you go, there you are. Well, the same is true for adversity and failure. No matter where you go, there’s a five-hundred-pound load of shit waiting for you. And that’s perfectly fine. The point isn’t to get away from the shit. The point is to find the shit you enjoy dealing with……… DOWNLOAD

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