“Constant stimulation complicates our understanding of ourselves. The more options we have, the less willing we are to compromise what we want to be with somebody else.”
One day not long ago, I awoke to a bright orange book ubiquitously displayed everywhere I looked.
Provocatively titled The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, today's guest birthed a publishing sensation, custom tailored for click-bait embrace.
The title also made the book easy to dismiss. In fact, freely admit to downright refusing to read it. But it just would not go away. Not only did it top the New York Times bestseller list, the book stayed there. 6 million plus copies later, it still rests at #4 — a full 149 weeks since its publication.
So who is this Mark Manson guy?
Realizing that my reflexive reaction was perhaps misplaced, I finally relented. And was pleasantly surprised by what I discovered.
To be sure, the book is both contrarian and confrontational. Chock-a-block with f-bombs. But it's also surprisingly refreshing, upending the tired tropes of self-help with an intractable glee. Grappling with real issues, I relished Mark's unique voice — depth meets grit with an infectious philosophical sensibility.
Before he became a publishing juggernaut (his influence launching countless profanely titled copycat books), Mark began his writing career as a blogger. Sharing personal development advice that ‘doesn’t suck' (his words), he has amassed a devoted audience of 2 million monthly readers.
Dissecting our dysfunctional cultural relationship with money, entertainment and the internet, Mark's latest chart-topper, Everything Is F*cked: A Book About Hope is an equally compelling yet more mature follow up that deftly explores the perils of distraction, comfort and success.
This is a conversation about what happens when you exceed your every ambition. What then?
Today we explore the high-altitude, existential crisis visited upon a young man who eclipsed his wildest dreams by age 32.
More specifically, we cover Mark’s backstory as a blogger. We dissect the method to his various forms of madness. We discuss the enormous unexpected success of his first book. And the pressures that accompanied his skyward trajectory.
Ultimately, this is a dialog about our increasingly distracted world. It's about the soul erosion precipitated by too much comfort. And it's a sounding call to restore the foundation of human dignity.
I really enjoyed my time with Mark — and left this conversation with great respect for his profoundly curious mind and finely honed insights on the human condition.
Peace + Plants,
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