If Mark Manson, the author of The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck, had been willing to sacrifice the catchiness of the title for something more descriptive of the overarching thesis, he might have gone with How to Give a Fuck About the Right Things. (But again – not as catchy.)
Despite what the glossy cover might advertise, the book encourages readers to, in fact, give fucks. But to give fucks about the right things (good values) instead of the wrong things (stupid values).
This calls for figuring out what your values are. We all have them. The thing is, some of our values are good, while others are just stupid.
What’s a stupid value? Anything that’s shallow and that we have little control over. For example, “being well liked and popular.”
The metric for that value is what other people think of you – something (mostly) outside your control.
A better value, which we have more control over, is nurturing relationships. That’s something we can directly invest in through our actions and decisions.
The fact is, these good and stupid values often come in dichotomous yin/yang pairs. It’s up to use to choose which one we focus on. Being a good friend versus being popular. Being physically fit versus having a bikini body. Doing a good job as a manager versus being a well-liked supervisor.
This book encouraged me to shift my thinking. Maybe it will shift yours too.