Read With Me : The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck

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Hey, hey, back with another Read With Me post. If you remember from A Year in Readview, I mentioned Mark Manson’s, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck, was on my list. My Pop actually gifted me this book for Christmas, which we finally celebrated two weekends ago.  Once I opened The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck, I finished it in two days.

Funny, well-written, and easy to read, this book gives some great advice and introduces a few new give fewer fucks concepts that are surprisingly easy to digest. I was surprised at how counter-intuitive some of the advice seemed to me, but sure enough, by the end of the page, Mark had me nodding along in agreement. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck provides concise, rational arguments for caring a little less. I will certainly be incorporating some of Mark’s tidbits into my meditation practices and classes.

You’ll Enjoy Reading The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck If :

  • You tend to care too much about everything – people, your job, your problems, etc.
  • You need guidance on what you should focus on / care about.
  • You think you should be happy, but you aren’t quite there yet.
  • You haven’t learned to appreciate the shittier things in life yet.
  • You need a mini pep talk. You want to take responsibility for your life.
  • You’re constantly chasing highs, but not feeling fulfilled.
  • You want to be pointed in the right direction.
  • You want to feel comfortable with your life and therefore your mortality.
  • You are in the business of being a life coach or counselor in some capacity (there are a bunch of great takeaways to share).

Again, I wanted to fill in the benefits of reading list I shared on the Read With Me post with actual examples from the book I finished today, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck. I may end up doing this with every book I read this year. I feel like it’s a good review and it tests my list and hey, it might possibly expand it too. We’ll see.

Why We Should Read More Often :

Expands your vocabulary and improves your writing

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck provides a lot of anecdotal evidence. Chapter after chapter, a person was introduced, their story shared, and an argument made. I think this formulaic pattern emphasized an author’s ability (in this case Mark’s) to create the bones of a book that would make readers feel more comfortable and familiar as the chapters progressed. The reader knows basically what to expect with each chapter.

Improves your understanding of the world

In this case, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck, improved my philosophical understanding of the world and gave me a few new concepts to process even if they were initially counterintuitive like the following: “Until we change how we view ourselves, what we believe we are and are not, we cannot overcome our avoidance and anxiety. We cannot change. In this way, “knowing yourself” or “finding yourself” can be dangerous. It can cement you into a strict role and saddle you with unnecessary expectations. It can close you off to inner potential and outer opportunities. I say don’t find yourself. I say never know who you are. Because that’s what keeps you striving and discovering. And it forces you to remain humble in your judgments and accepting of the differences in others.”

Prepares you to take action and create change

Again, the action and change creation are more personal in this book. Manson offers practical advice for going about your daily life and some great advice. Even being reminded of concepts I currently employ was super helpful, like so: “…the solution lies in the acceptance and active engagement of a negative experience – not the avoidance of it, not the salvation from it.”

Boosts your imagination and creativity and improves brain function

I read The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck with a pen in hand. I was constantly underlining quotes and passages and making notes in the margins. This book allowed me to look at meditation and mindfulness from a different perspective. I will certainly incorporate Manson’s themes into my mindfulness exercises and practices, which will help to reach a broader audience, but also to switch up the language I am used to using with my students.  I appreciated Mark Manson’s perspective and capabilities to explain it concisely and therefore his influence in broadening my own views.

Reading sets a great example for those around you

Reading a book with the word F*CK on it certainly turned some heads. Hopefully, if those people gave too many fucks about the curse on the cover they managed to pick it up and take a look some day.

A few* favorite lines/takeaways from The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck:

Say, “Fuck it,” not to everything in life, but rather to everything unimportant in life.

An obsession and overinvestment in emotion fails us for the simple reason that emotions never last.

People who become great at something become great because they understand that they’re not already great – they are mediocre, they are average – and that they could be so much better.

The knowledge and acceptance of your own mundane existence will actually free you to accomplish what you truly wish to accomplish, without judgment or lofty expectations.

Everything we think and feel about a situation ultimately comes back to how valuable we perceive it to be.

Often the only difference between a problem being painful or being powerful is a sense that we chose it, and that we are responsible for it.

Fault is past tense. Responsibility is present tense.

Certainty is the enemy of growth.

The more you embrace being uncertain and not knowing, the more comfortable you will feel in knowing what you don’t know.

**There are so many more passages and tidbits I could pull, but this list was getting lengthy.

Books I’m reading now :

How Emotions Are Made : The Secret Life of the Brain by Lisa Feldman Barrett

You Are A Badass by Jen Sincero

1984 by George Orwell

Books I’ve finished in 2018 :

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

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

The Tao of Pooh – I read this again as part of Meditative Mondays. You should give it a go!

The Nature Fix – read my thoughts on that here.

Invisible Monsters – read my thoughts on that here.

The Sun and Her Flowers

Again, this isn’t a competition, but if it was……..

Pages read in 2018 : 1344

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Read With Me : The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

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Hey, hey, back with another Read With Me post. I actually felt like I was slacking this past month because I had the opportunity to read so much the first two weeks of the year. Don’t you hate how a past accomplishment can make the current moment feel a little less special? F that! Try to release yourself from that feeling. You don’t wanna be Matthew McConaughey in Dazed and Confused, you know, the football star that never grew up? He sucks. Please go back and watch that and see what I mean if the reference is escaping you. Back to the books!

A couple weeks ago, a cool cat gifted me The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. This book is freaking stellar, interstellar? Should we talk about McConaughey movies all day? No. Books! Although there was a movie made about this book. I haven’t watched it and the ratings look pretty low, so admittedly I not going to.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy was written by the late Douglas Adam’s and is actually a trilogy (which ended up turning into quintet), which sold more than a million copies in his lifetime. It’s science fiction doused in humor that is suspense driven – so totally quick, easy, and hilarious to read.  The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy reminded me of works by Tom Robbins or Kurt Vonnegut. Here’s the set of Hitchhiker books and a list of books similar to Hitchhiker’s Guide if you’ve already read it.

 

You’ll Enjoy Reading The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy If :

  • You like science fiction and humor.
  • You try not to take life too seriously.
  • You can laugh at the absurdity of life.
  • You need a story that can act as a temporary escape from life.
  • You need a book that propels you through it to get back into a good reading habit.
  • You want a book you can read with just about any friend of any age or sex.
  • You’re working your way through a list of ‘must reads’ because this appears on most.

Like I did with The Nature Fix, I thought it would be interesting to also fill in the benefits of reading list I shared on the Read With Me post with actual examples from the book I finished today, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. I may end up doing this with every book I read this year. I feel like it’s a good review and it tests my list and hey, it might possibly expand it too. We’ll see.

Why We Should Read More Often :

Expands your vocabulary and improves your writing

While there weren’t so many new words presented, except for made up ones, the sentence structure and syntax was extremely clever in this novel. Sometimes a scene would be set up so vividly only to be ended with a single, simple sentence as if a mega plot wasn’t just played out before us only to never be discussed again. See some of my favorite lines and passages below.

Improves your understanding of the world

This novel presented a refreshing view of the human race. One in which we know very little and aren’t in control at all. I love this idea. I think it’s pretty much accurate so to be able to read a novel based on it and built up with humor on all sides was welcoming.

Prepares you to take action and create change

Even a seemingly silly book like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy can prep you to take action. If anything, the message in this book is that life is too damn short. You have no idea what will happen tomorrow so just by committing yourself to any action or personal change is a triumph.

Boosts your imagination and creativity and improves brain function

Hells yes. I’d say it is rare that I read fiction let alone science fiction. This book not only opened me up to a new genre, but it also presented new concepts for my own daydreams.

Reading sets a great example for those around you

While reading this book, I had no less than a dozen people tell me they a) want to read this book or b) read and loved the book. Woohoo for books bringing strangers together! Now I have to decide who to pass it on to.

 

A few favorite lines from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy :

“She wishes she knew what it was she was trying not to think about.”

“The immensity of time worried him, he could feel it as a presence.”

“The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy also mentions alcohol. It says that the best drink in existence is the Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster, the effect of which is like having your brains smashed out with a slice of lemon wrapped round a large gold brick.”

“Bypasses are devices that allow some people to dash from point A to point B very fast while other people dash from point B to point A very fast. People living at point C, being a point directly in between, are often given to wonder what’s so great about point A that so many people from point B are so keen to get there, and what’s so great about point B that so many people from point A are so keen to get there. They often wish that people would just once and for all work out where the hell they wanted to be.”

“Arthur blinked at the screens and felt he was missing something important. Suddenly he realized what it was.

“Is there any tea on this spaceship?” he asked.”

 

Books I’m reading now :

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

How Emotions Are Made : The Secret Life of the Brain by Lisa Feldman Barrett

 

Books I’ve finished in 2018 :

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

The Tao of Pooh – I read this again as part of Meditative Mondays. You should give it a go!

The Nature Fix – read my thoughts on that here.

Invisible Monsters – read my thoughts on that here.

The Sun and Her Flowers

Again, this isn’t a competition, but if it was……..

Pages read in 2018 : 1120+

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2017 : A Year in Readview

A year in Readview, get it? Of course you do. I’m so clever and it’s absolutely because of the books I read this year. I’m always asking other peeps what they’re reading and so I figured I should share my booklist from this past year as well. Below are most of the books I read in 2017 and a few I listened to. Unfortunately, I usually give away my books after i finish them and I am quite forgetful so there are bound to be a few books I’ve left off the list. Oops.

26103116_10155836267711217_651842685_n (1) Continue reading

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Teachable Moments : Beach Reads

Teachable Moments is a relatively new series on the blog, you can find the archive here. You can learn more about Saxis in this selection of posts, and here are more beach book recommendations for adults and kids. If you’d like to see our favorite sun gear for toddlers, click here.

beach time = reading time. #amiright

When we start planning for our time at the beach, my mind immediately turns to the books I’ll read. Hours sitting on the beach provide the uninterrupted reading time that we just don’t seem to find elsewhere in life. Wait, if you’re a parent reading this, that statement is laughable. Who sits still on the beach with two kids? And to that, I say, touché. That’s when you teach your kids about the joys of the beach nap.

But in all seriousness, as the boys have grown, I’ve started to think more intentionally about their beach reads. These boys love a good adventure, and when we’re traveling I find that they fully immerse themselves in the new environment. They aren’t sitting around thinking about Colorado and the mountains; instead, they’re exploring!  And what better way could there be to teach them about the place they’re visiting, and the animals and people that live there, than to read books?

I’ve made an effort over the years to stock the beach house with good ocean and bay-related books for the kids. It’s nice to have these books there rather than at home because the stories really come alive when they’re reading about animals that they just saw on the beach and in the marsh. And I know that they can relate to crabbing and fishing adventures when they’ve just spent the afternoon on Poppop’s boat putting bait in the crab pots and casting out their finishing lines.

Below is a list of our current favorites (for reference, the boys are 2 and 4). Admittedly, I’m particularly smitten with books written and illustrated by local artists, so you’ll see quite a few on the list. They add an intimate feel in their descriptions of the place that could never be achieved in a generic book about ocean/beach life.

live seasoned beach reads

The Cat in the Hat’s Learning Library

I know opinions can vary when it comes to Dr. Seuss. The wording can be awkward and leave you tongue-tied, which is not the best for reading aloud. But it rhymes, and I’m a sucker for a good rhyming text, especially one that’s educational.  Each book flows really well after one or two readings.

Continue reading

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