The Courage To Be Disliked – Do You Really Want to Change?
Recently I’ve been drawn to books which encourage me to look at myself, and hopefully make me a better ‘me’. The Courage To Be Disliked had a title I just couldn’t go past, and when I read that over 3million copies had been sold, I couldn’t pass it up.
The Courage To Be Disliked is a unique book. It has taken Japan by storm, using the theories of renowned 19th-century philosopher and psychiatrist Alfred Adler to create a string of conversations between a fictional philosopher and a young man. The conversations cover many broad, interesting and touchy topics, such as:-
Admitting Fault Is Not Defeat
An Inferiority Complex Is Not An Excuse
Discard Other Peoples Tasks
All Problems Are Interpersonal Relationship Problems
The Difference Between Trust And Confidence
These often complex topics and discussions are played out in a conversational style between the two men, which works because it brings two balanced sides to the arguments and discussions. The Courage To Be Disliked is translated from Japanese and has kept the cultural and conversational language style which does take a while to settle into (it certainly isn’t a casual or relaxed discussion), but it works perfectly. Be warned, this is not a book to read when you aren’t fully focussed. Whilst it’s easy to follow the conversations, the topics will knock around in your own head as you work out whether you sit on the side of the philosopher, the young man, or somewhere in between.
The philosopher character certainly sticks by his life’s work and the theories of Adler, but The Courage To Be Disliked is a book which aims to leave you sitting with yourself in between chapters. You’ll find yourself doing household chores, or at your keyboard, unpacking all the information in your mind and coming to your own conclusions.
You will wholeheartedly agree on some points and want to throw the book at the wall at others. Its content is polarising and I certainly don’t agree with everything the philosopher says or the young man, but I think that’s the point. The Courage To Be Disliked is there to spark a conversation with yourself and do some slightly uncomfortable soul-searching.
I enjoyed the fresh perspective, the conversations it sparked, and the questions I asked myself after reading. One of the most unique books I’ve read in a long time.
If you are in the market for a bit of self-reflection without the kid gloves, buy The Courage To Be Disliked.
4/5 A book that has you thinking
Buy here from Booktopia for under $20 and a bonus gift!
A copy was given to me by Allen & Unwin in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis Of The Courage To Be Disliked
Released for the first time in the English language, the Japanese phenomenon that teaches us the simple yet profound lessons needed to liberate our real selves and find lasting happiness.
A single book can change your life.
Already an enormous bestseller in Asia, with more than 3 million copies sold, The Courage to be Disliked demonstrates how to unlock the power within yourself to be the person you truly want to be.
Using the theories of Alfred Adler, one of the three giants of 19th-century psychology alongside Freud and Jung, it follows an illuminating conversation between a philosopher and a young man. The philosopher explains to his pupil how each of us is able to determine our own lives, free of the shackles of past experiences, doubts and the expectations of others. It’s a way of thinking that’s deeply liberating, allowing us to develop the courage to change and to ignore the limitations that we and those around us can place on ourselves.
The result is a book that is both highly accessible and profound in its importance. Millions have already read and benefited from its wisdom. Now that The Courage to be Disliked has been published for the first time in English, so can you.
About the Author Ichiro Kishimi
Ichiro Kishimi was born in Kyoto, where he still lives, in 1956. He has aspired to become a philosopher since his days in high school. Since 1989, while specialising in Classical Western philosophy, with a special focus on Platonic philosophy, he has researched Adlerian psychology; he writes and lectures on the subject, and provides counselling for “youths” in psychiatric clinics as a certified counsellor and consultant for the Japanese Society of Adlerian Psychology.
He is the translator, into Japanese, of selected writings by Alfred Adler: Kojin Shinrigaku Kogi (The Science of Living) and Hito wa Naze Shinkeisho ni Naru no ka (Problems of Neurosis), and he is the author of Adora Shinrigaku Nyumon (Introduction to Adlerian Psychology), in addition to numerous other books.
Fumitake Koga, an award-winning professional writer and author, was born in 1973. He has released numerous bestselling works of business-related and general non-fiction. He encountered Adlerian psychology in his late twenties and was deeply affected by its conventional wisdom-defying ideas. Thereafter, Koga made numerous visits to Ichiro Kishimi in Kyoto, gleaned from him the essence of Adlerian psychology, and took down the notes for the classical “dialogue format” method of Greek philosophy that is used in this book.