Like many, I survived the initial months of lockdown in the hope that the good days will be back again, that it is a phase to test my patience, that it will pass away soon. Hope is a nutrient for the mind to get past difficult times. Humankind survives and thrives on hope. But hope also has a destructive side. Did you know about the other side of the coin?
This darker side has found the focus of the motivational writer Mark Manson in his book Everything is F*cked. If you pick this book up thinking to learn some better ways to remain hopeful, then you are hoping against hope. Mark Manson put forward one dark picture after another why you should not leverage more on hope.
Hope in itself is not bad. But hoping to gain something without pain is not good. Being righteous in the hope of meeting your means is not good. The author argues despite living in better and comfortable conditions than our ancestors, despondency prevails more among people. We are forever in search of hope. It works more like dopamine whoever provides it catches our complete and unhindered attention. Politicians, advertising agencies, spiritual-religious gurus, jihadi leaders, business tycoons, etc. exploit this hopelessness among people to drive their agenda.
You must have noticed two voices going round and round in your brain, arguing and counter arguing, one wants you to be rational, and the other wants you to be impulsive and take action. Mark calls them voices of thinking brain and feeling brain. Both brains are loggerheads and strive hard to get things done in their way.
So how to establish the perfect synchronization between these two brains that your persona remains detached from the darker side of hope. How to combat it? How not to fall on the harmful side of hope? After an extensive and intensive study of many theories, philosophies, and viewpoints by world-renowned philosophers and thinkers, Mark Manson came up with an agenda sort of plan which forms the rest of the book.
The author emphasizes the need for alignment between both voices for better judgment. So that people don’t find that crack to exploit you.
Observe antifragility – You must have heard this saying no gain without pain. Avoid easy ways out or shortcuts. Choose your hard, diligently. Don’t hope to gain something without enduring pain. For example- you have to sweat that fat out of your body to be fit.
Unconditional- Be virtuous for the sake of it. For example- you love your child because you love. Not because you hope they will take care of you when old.
Be honest because you think it is correct. Not because you will get something for being honest.
Mark Manson’s magnetic and dramatic voice will keep you glued to the book wondering where precisely the explanation heads. He has picked up incidents from daily life, delved deep into them, and knit them up with hope, explaining how various agencies target our vulnerability for their objectives. Everything sounds complex and frilled up, but Mark Manson like an expert crystal-clears to make some sense.
Everything is Fcked is nowhere near to his previous book, The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fck. The flowery language inundated the book . But still, I would recommend this book. You might not read anything new in the book, but Mark Manson has a style of conveying the same old lesson in an impactful way that leaves an impression.