Everything is F*cked: A Book About Hope
By Mark Manson
Everything is Fcked by Mark Manson sheds light on the question of why so many people in our contemporary society feel so hopeless when we are wealthier, healthier and freer than ever before. Manson presents comprehensive arguments drawn from sociology, psychology, history, and philosophy. The book highlights the notion that pain is necessary and why hope can be dangerous. A well-rounded guide to carving out a more meaningful existence.
Here’s what you’ll learn about in this book summary
- Why the world feels like it is getting worse, despite all of the economic and technological advancements our current culture enjoys.
- Why pain is a necessary part of living.
- How to be happy.
- And much more…
We must embrace pain if we seek to lead a meaningful and fulfilling life. Pain is a necessary part of our existence, evolution, and eventual elevation.
“Freedom itself demands discomfort.”
“This is the fundamental problem of hope—not an uneducated Thinking Brain, but an uneducated Feeling Brain, a Feeling Brain that has adopted and accepted poor value judgments about itself and the world.”
“by experiencing our hopes, we lose them. We see that our beautiful visions for a perfect future are not so perfect, that our dreams and aspirations are themselves riddled with unexpected flaws and unforeseen sacrifices. Because the only thing that can ever truly destroy a dream is to have it come true.”
THE BIG IDEAS
1. The Uncomfortable Truth: Nothing Really Matters
“Our psyche needs hope to survive the way a fish needs water. Hope is the fuel for our mental engine.”
Manson kicks this party off by sharing an uncomfortable message: human beings are totally insignificant, we are meaningless dots of insignificance in the grand scheme of the Universe.
Your daily routine, your daily tasks, and regular errands are just deliberate attempts to avoid reality, the truth, the uncomfortable truth.
You serve no true purpose, humanity has invented this meaning because, without meaning, we find it impossible to live life.
The question is, what is the point of going to work, or getting out of bed in the morning if nothing really matters?
True, nothing really matters but this is where self-belief becomes vital. Without self-belief, you will certainly feel like an insignificant dot drowning in this vast planet. Despite the fact that nothing really matters, we have hope.
Hope provides motivation, a reason to keep going on a daily basis.
- Self-belief can help you through the difficult times, those times when you feel like the world is caving in on you. Knowing and understanding that you are just one person floating around this vast universe can be a scary thought. Hope requires a sense of control, a belief in your self-value.
2. The Opposite of Happiness is Hopelessness
“To build and maintain hope, we need three things: a sense of control, a belief in the value of something, and a community. “Control” means we feel as though we’re in control of our own life, that we can affect our fate. “Values” means we find something important enough to work toward, something better, that’s worth striving for. And “community” means we are part of a group that values the same things we do and is working toward achieving those things.”
The opposite of happiness is not sadness or anger, the opposite of happiness is hopelessness.
When you immerse yourself in hopelessness, you believe that transformation is impossible and stagnation is the modus operandi. Feeling hopeless often leads to addiction, bad decision-making, and overall self-destruction. When we lose hope, we surrender ourselves to the unpredictable world and nothing matters.
Release yourself from hopelessness by doing the following:
- Find a focus, care about something. Something greater than yourself and your personal desires.
- If you’re struggling to find meaning in your day-to-day life, start something, do something, find value. When you do this you will gradually start gaining back control of your life.
- Remember that community is crucial when it comes to releasing yourself from hopelessness. Join a community that has the same values as you. Joining a community will motivate you to push through and gain some self-belief.
3. You Have a Thinking and Feeling Brain
You have a thinking and feeling brain.
- Your thinking brain is the side of your brain that represents your conscious thoughts. It’s the side that controls decision-making and logical thinking.
- Your feeling brain is the side of your brain that’s responsible for your emotions, intuition, desires, and impulses.
You could also think of it this way: Your feeling brain drives the car, while your thinking brain draws the map. They’re two parts of a whole that need one another to help you function at your best.
- The most effective way to achieve your goals is to actively question your thinking brain. Ask your thinking brain how it is feeling. For example, you want to switch jobs. Ask the question, “Feeling brain, how do you feel about switching jobs?” or “How do you feel about packing up and moving to Australia?”
- Your thinking brain has more planning power, therefore, you need to use your thinking brain to reason with your feeling brain.
- Work to strike a balance between the two parts of your brain by using your thinking brain to plan things in advance, and your feeling brain to help carry those plans out.
4. We Don’t Do Things We Should Do Because We Don’t Feel Like It
Why don’t we do things we should do? Because we don’t feel like it. Obstacles that slow down or stifle your progress are emotional problems. Your addiction to social media is an emotional issue as opposed to a lack of discipline. In a nutshell, all your problems are emotional problems.
To solve emotional problems you have to find emotional solutions. In the book, Manson states:
“Emotional problems are irrational, meaning they cannot be reasoned with. And this brings us to even worse news: emotional problems can only have emotional solutions.”
Identifying and unraveling your emotional gaps requires self-knowledge, self-evaluation and plenty of intentional personal development.
Therefore, if you want to have peace of mind, start asking your feeling brain to act differently.
5. Change Requires Pain
“There is no such thing as change without pain, no growth without discomfort. It’s why it is impossible to become someone new without first grieving the loss of who you used to be.”
Change requires pain.
If you want to experience massive transformation you need to experience massive pain. Pain and change go hand in hand. It is impossible to change the person you want to be without grieving the loss of the person you used to be (or currently are.)
As human beings, we avoid pain and gravitate towards pleasure. However, avoiding pain is not always a good thing. For example, if you want to lose weight, you need to exercise and change your diet. You will no doubt experience junk food withdrawal and working out will be torture for the first few weeks and months. At first, you will feel like quitting. But if you push through the pain, stay focused, and give it your all – you will experience change, you will evolve and grow.
Stepping outside your comfort zone and gravitating toward pain rather than avoiding it is similar to taking massive action…
Taking massive action will hurt at first, but the magical change you will experience as a result of taking massive action will help you to understand the importance of pain on your journey toward happiness and inner peace.
- Understand that change requires pain, instead of running away from pain, embrace it.
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