There’s been some hype lately surrounding Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life, a self-help book written by Gary John Bishop.
I hadn’t heard the name of the author before I started seeing this book’s cover all over my Amazon’s and my Goodreads’ recommendations.
The title and the cover of the book never stroke me as attention-worthy, so I ignored these recommendations for months.
However, judging by the amazing reviews, there must be something good inside, right? And you know what they say: never judge a book by its cover.
Last week I was looking for new books to add to my to-read list. This one popped once again and I said: “Fu*k it, ok, I’ll give it a try“.
I bought it and started reading it immediately.
This book’s all about self-talk; that constant conversation you’re having with yourself all day long.
We all have that voice and that self-talk in various degrees. And the author addresses it and talks about the effects that self-talk has on us and how to fight it back.
First of all, the book is super short. You can read it in one seating if you want!
The book is structured in several chapters named as “I” affirmations: I am willing; I am wired to win; I got this; I embrace the uncertainty; I am not my thoughts, I am what I do; I am relentless; I expect nothing and accept everything.
When I first read the table of content, I confess I rolled my eyes a little. It looks like this person is about to start talking about a bunch of very cheese ideas.
You know? The typical self-help in which people tell you you can do ANYTHING you want, you just put your mind to it. And I tell you what, I’m too old for that kind of stuff.
I kept reading. At first, this book sounded like a mediocre self-help blog post written from a shallow perspective. And I don’t mean to sound harsh, but I gotta be honest. It’s just not the type of writing I’m used to finding in books.
Nevertheless, it didn’t take long for me to be hooked to this little book.
The author addresses this same thing I was too afraid to read at first: those non-sense, tasteless “I am” affirmations that assure you that if you repeat “I am a tiger” a couple of hundred times a day, well, you’ll be unstoppable in life. He says “Hey, this is not what this book is going to be about“.
So I relaxed a lot when I read that.
I disregarded my first impression and devoted myself to the book completely. I started to realize that yes, it’s basic self-help, but that it’s amazingly well presented.
Unfu*k Yourself can be a little too cheesy for my taste sometimes, but it speaks to the heart; it communicates simple, yet universal truths we all should be familiar with.
At one point, once I got past my initial reaction to it, I found myself nodding at every. single. paragraph. I highlighted at least a sentence in every single page!
I kid you not, it was hard to come up with only 10 lessons I learned from this book.
It’s excellent for people who haven’t read that many self-help books or people that feel negative and need a wake-up call.
Gary John Bishop, the author, is a writer, speaker, and “urban philosopher” who’s written three books on self-help.
He focuses a lot on helping people overcome self-sabotage which is one of the toughest barriers to overcome.
Besides the straight-to-the-point content you’ll find in this book, the author also includes fantastic quotes every now and then that give his points a lot of power.
You know how much I love a good quote full of wisdom. Almost every single quote the author included is frame-worthy!
The bottom line? I enjoyed it!
Here are the top 10 lessons I learned from this amazing book.
The Top 10 Lessons I Learned From Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life, by Gary John Bishop
- “… Believing you’ll be successful is only one (albeit important) part of success”. Daydreaming alone won’t take you far in life, but there’s a huge difference between people who take action thinking success is far away from them and people who work for their dreams knowing in their hearts that success is just around the corner.
- Reframe your problems as opportunities and you’ll start to shape the reality you want to live in. Our reality is shaped by the way in which we think, feel, and talk about everything that happens around us. I started using this piece of advice the moment I read it in this book and trust me, it was powerful, to say the least. Thanks to this book I recognized that facing my everyday challenges has made me extremely creative and that’s a skill I’ve been able to extrapolate to other areas of my life.
- In order to use self-help and to improve, you need to be willing. I’ve seen people trashing self-help time and again. Sure, it’s not for everybody. And while I agree with them at some level, I’m also sure that people who don’t like these things just aren’t willing to use them in their lives. This author talks about being willing and how it’s everything we need to take a step forward. “We often see ourselves as procrastinators or lazy or unmotivated. When in reality, we’re simply unwilling.“
- When there’s no willingness to act, use the unwillingness to keep living like this to get yourself moving. Maybe being willing to take action is not your thing; maybe you need to say “Ok, I’m unwilling to keep living like this”. This has been my greatest motivator lately. This mindset shift is so strong I work around 7-8 hours from Monday to Sunday so I can change my life for the better.
- “I am wired to win“. Even when you think you’re losing, you’re actually winning. And not because every problem and the negative outcome is an opportunity in disguise I mean, that’s also true, but this author has another interesting point: your results are a consequence of the way you think. For better or worse, every action you take and every choice you make is rooted in your self-talk. You always get the results you and your brain want. Whether that desire is conscious or subconscious. “You see, your thoughts are so powerful that they are constantly pushing you towards your goals…“
- “The better you understand your patterns the better shot you have in altering them”
- In the great scheme of things, most bad experiences represent a tiny fraction of your whole life. This problem you’re facing right now is just another bump in the road and nothing more. This too shall pass!
- “The future can have truly great things in store for you”. I started to think about it and realized that’s totally true. Life has surprised me pleasantly time and again throughout my life. There’s no reason to think these good surprises are all behind me already, considering I’m only 28.
- Sometimes we’re too close to our biases and emotions to see what’s really going on.
- We’re addicted to comfort and most of us don’t realize that uncertainty is where the fun happens. Because of our survival instinct, we’re wired to prefer what’s familiar. Our ancestors didn’t like wandering around without knowing which type of danger might be waiting for them out there. They needed comfort to stay alive. However, life’s changed, but our that preference for certainty as stays somewhat the same.
Yes, when I first started reading this book I thought it was meh… But maybe it’s because I was waiting for something different.
The author’s writing isn’t terrible, in my opinion. He writes in a very conversational, motivational, tough-lovey tone.
Once you finish this book, you’ll be left with a feeling of self-empowerment that makes you want to tackle every single one of your goals. I love that feeling and ever since I finished it, I’ve been spotting a few negative affirmations I tend to say to myself.
Thanks to this book I’m slowly but surely replacing those negative thought patterns with new ideas that’ll take me further in life. I’m so ready to get rid of my self-imposed limitations.
Even though I wouldn’t include it in my list of favorite books ever, Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life is a book I highly recommend.
For all the wisdom the author shares in a concise, easy to digest way, I give this book 3.8/5 stars.
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