How do we live a happy life and achieve real happiness? The Courage to Be Disliked paperback has sold over 3.5 million copies, and is a Japanese phenomenon that shows how to live a life and achieve real lasting happiness. It’s already an enormous bestseller and based on Alfred Adler’s philosophical tenets. He believes we can all live happy and fulfilled lives without worrying about the past or future. It’s also written by an award winning professional writer, Ichiro Kishimi and writer Fumitake Koga.
In the book, Adler’s philosophy is that all problems are interpersonal relationship problems. To live a happy life, we must be able to accept ourselves as we are, and accept others as they are. Here are some:
Night One: Deny Trauma
Adler states, No experience is in itself a cause of our success or failure. We do not suffer from the shock of our experiences—the so-called trauma—but instead, we make out of them whatever suits our purposes. We are not determined by our experiences, but the meaning we give them is self-determining.
Night Two: All problems are interpersonal relationship problems.
Adler says that to get rid of our problems, all we can do is live in the universe all alone. Loneliness doesn’t come from being all alone, but rather the feeling of exclusion of your community and the people that surround you. It’s impossible to live without others in the world, so all the problems are interpersonal relationship problems.
Night three: Discard other people’s tasks.
We can’t live trying to satisfy the expectations of others, and that we should discard the need to seek recognition from others. By seeking recognition from others, it will lead us to follow what other people expect from us. And if we’re consumed with satisfying other people’s expectations, then it’s going to be a very difficult life to live, constantly worried about how others see you. And in turn, how you see yourself.
Night four: Where the center of the world is.
If you’re the only one who can change your life and achieve real happiness, then that could feel pretty lonely. The sense of belonging is something one acquires by your own efforts, but not something endowed to you at birth. It is about thinking beyond yourself, and to be of use of something larger, like the community around you.
The fifth night: To live in earnest in the here and now.
we should not be offering empty praise for someone, which starts to define a hierarchy between people. And if all problems are interpersonal relationship problems, then this can quickly create unhealthy habits and trivial pursuits of praise. To have the courage to be disliked, we need to be able to look at others as equals, not above or below us.