Notes: The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Manson

Feb 8, 2017

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1. Don’t try

Feedback loop from hell

Subtle art of not giving a fuck

2. Happiness is a problem

Disappointment panda

Happiness comes from solving problems

Emotions are overrated

Choose your struggle

3. You are not special

Things fall apart

Tyranny of exceptionalism

What’s the point if I’m not exceptional?

4. Value of suffering

Self-awareness onion

Rock star problems

Shitty values

Defining good and bad values

5. You are always choosing

The choice

Responsibility/Fault Fallacy

Responding to tragedy


Victimhood chic

There is no “how”

6. You’re wrong about everything

Architects of our own beliefs

Be careful what you believe

Dangers of pure certainty

Manson’s law of avoidance

Kill yourself

How to be less certain of yourself

  1. What if I’m wrong?
    • People are bad at observing and judging themselves
    • In order for any change to happen in life, have to be wrong about something
  2. What would it mean if I were wrong?
    • Evaluate different values without necessarily adopting them 3: Would being wrong create a better or a worse problem than my current problem, for both myself and others?
    • Beliefs are often generated retrospectively to justify values and metrics we’ve chosen for ourselves
  3. If it feels like you vs world, usually just you vs yourself

7. Failure is the way forward

Failure/success paradox

Pain is part of process

“Do something“ principle

8. Importance of saying no

[^max]: Watched this video on nerfs and buffs which mentioned medium maximization

Rejection makes your life better


How to build trust

Freedom through commitment

9. And then you die

“Seek the truth for yourself, and I will meet you there.”

Something beyond ourselves

Sunny side of death

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