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The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck Review

This was a book that got me back into reading. For various reasons, I was very soured by reading through grade school years, but I was given this book as a gift (actually it was given to my fiancée) and I couldn’t put it down. It nailed so many things I was beginning to realize in my own life as a young 20-something year old.

“You and everyone you know are going to be dead soon. And in the short amount of time between here and there, you have a limited amount of fucks to give. Very few, in fact. And if you go around giving a fuck about everything and everyone without conscious thought or choice—well, then you’re going to get fucked.”

Mark Manson, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck


The way Mark Manson (the author) writes this book is primed to keep any reader engaged. He knows exactly who his audience is, so he doesn’t try to be pretentious in any way whatsoever. He says exactly what he thinks, including any necessary 4-letter words, if you couldn’t tell from the title.

With chapters titled things like “Don’t try”, “Happiness is a problem”, and “You are not special”, which are chapters 1, 2, and 3 by the way, it is worth a chuckle to consider this a self-help book. But that is exactly what this book is. Manson teaches us to not take ourselves too seriously, and don’t get swept up into the happy lifestyle that society sells us and tries to convince us is real. Because it is FAKE! That’s the beauty of this book and why it was so successful in my opinion – it cuts right through the bullshit, like none did before it. In a time where “hustle culture” is everywhere, and everyone tries to sell you their life-hacks or insane work regimen, Manson tells us the opposite. It couldn’t be more refreshing.

I have heard some middle-aged and older readers of this book say that the lessons taught were things that they learned years ago. That may be true. Perhaps if I read it at a later age, then I would agree with them. Although, as a young adult, trying to find the perfect job, place to live, and you name it, this was eye opening.

If you wouldn’t mind a refreshing take on a book, that will probably take a few hours to read, then this is more than worth cracking open!

Major Takeaway

What’s the major takeaway? Well, just like the title says – stop giving a f*ck! I am a person that can worry about stupid things that will likely never come to fruition. Most people are this way as well. Manson has such a unique delivery of these seemingly obvious points, that you can finally truly see it for yourself. The things we think matter, don’t. What is the path to any semblance of inner peace? Yeah it’s not giving a f*ck.

Another major lesson, came in a chapter Manson titles “the value of suffering”. This reminds me of a lesson I read about in Dopamine Nation. This took me way too long to realize, but life is all about suffering. Without suffering, any wins, successes, or triumphs we have will be meaningless. What Mark Mason asserts is that we have to choose our suffering if possible, and suffer for things that we believe in or want to reap the benefits of (i.e. working late nights to launch our own business). And by the way! Not only do we have to choose our suffering, we have to choose our fucks!

This book left me with an energy that hardly any books do. I will soon be rereading it to try and recapture that feeling. Happy reading!

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