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The Courage to Be Disliked: How to Free Yourself, Change your Life and Achieve Real Happiness

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  40,822 ratings  ·  4,918 reviews
The Japanese phenomenon that teaches us the simple yet profound lessons required to liberate our real selves and find lasting happiness.

The Courage to be Disliked shows you how to unlock the power within yourself to become your best and truest self, change your future and find lasting happiness. Using the theories of Alfred Adler, one of the three giants of 19th century ps
Paperback, 288 pages
Published January 3rd 2019 by Allen & Unwin (first published December 12th 2013)
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Rebecca I understood this to mean that he took care of his father because of who he is, not because of what was expected of him or to win his father's approva…moreI understood this to mean that he took care of his father because of who he is, not because of what was expected of him or to win his father's approval. He took care of his father because his father didn't have the capacity to take care of himself at that level anymore. His was a task of love. Whether or not his father thanked him was irrelevant, but it was about focusing on his own task of love. IF his father was to reject his care, then it would be his task to withdraw from this task as to not intervene with his father's chosen path of his own life.(less)
Jerodine I think the philosopher challenges us to examine our interactions with others. We can still have vertical thoughts in a horizontal relationship. The p…moreI think the philosopher challenges us to examine our interactions with others. We can still have vertical thoughts in a horizontal relationship. The philosopher recognises the human desire to be liked and to persuade our comrades to think and act like us and so our exchange with others may be tainted by a personal agenda to manipulate others to respond to us in a way that enhances one's self esteem. Therefore, with the aim to enhance social interest and life tasks affirming, committing one's effort to live horizontally with others opens up a safe space for relationship building without coercing yourself or others to drink the water. If others resist adjusting their vertical attitude towards you, the philosopher would encourage you to speak your mind respectfully to them without being concerned of the consequences, even if it may cost you to break off some alliances or hurt you financially . In the end, you will feel more confident to be yourself, less inclined to please others to gain belonging and more content to live your day simply but fully. (less)

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Jen - The Tolkien Gal
Sep 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
What do we say to the god of self-help books?

Not today. Maybe tomorrow.

But this, this isn't a self-help book. And fuck it, I'm going to be brutally honest on Goodreads because you are all wonderful people. And we all need to stop hiding how we feel and have a discussion.

Disclaimer No book is a one-size-helps-all. Don't see any self-help or psychologically-directed book as the Holy Grail of "my life is now going to change." You know why? You decide to change. You did the work. The book might help
Oct 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was really famous in Japan, it became number one on the bestseller list in 2014. After then, it translated in Korean and it stayed on bestseller list for 33 weeks in Korea. At first time I heard this news, I doubt about this book. Because I had some biases about best sellers. But my professor just recommended this book to me, and I read it. And this book was totally different from other best sellers.

This book talks about 'Courage'. It says we need courage to be hated. Because peopl
May 19, 2019 rated it did not like it
I don't know if I can get through all of this. I've never reviewed a book before I finished it, but I feel it's warranted here.

First, the title is a bait and switch as it is all about Western Adlerian psychology, not anything Japanese.

It's outdated. It's almost incoherent if you know anything about psychological or biological research of the last 80 years. Adler has the excuse of not knowing about that because he's dead. The authors of this book do not.

So far, the book is a circular argument:
Victim blaming. “Trauma does not exist” “People CHOOSE to be unhappy”. This is the worst book I have ever read. So glad it was a give away. I’ll be regifting it to file 13.
Inspiring, thought-provoking and deeper than a Taylor Swift song.

'All you can do with regard to your own life is choose the best path that you believe in. On the other hand, what kind of judgement do people pass on that choice? That is the task of other people, and is not a matter you can do anything about.'

This quote kinda sums up the book. It's about returning the focus to only what you can affect, and living your own life a moment at a time.

There are some ideas here that are familiar to
Dec 21, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: did-nt-finish
I found the tone of this book contrived and condescending, with poorly written dialogue (although hard to know how much of that is due to the translation).

The worst faults for me, however, were the offensive, compassionaless, victim-blaming ideas such as 'trauma does not exist' (a heading of a sub-chapter), expanded on to state that a person suffering from agorophobia is choosing to do so to treated as special by their parents. Second worst would be the poor logic used to 'prove' these ideas.

Krishna Chaitanya
Teleology: The study of the purpose of the given phenomenon, rather than it's cause.

The past events does not define our present or future. People are not driven by past causes, but move toward goals that they themselves set.

Ever wonder what makes you angry?

The first thing that pops in my mind is, people get angry because of others or any external triggers, but in reality, people fabricate anger such that they can make the other person to submit. Anger is a means to achieve a goal. Anger is a too
Kalyn Nicholson
I have goosebumps finishing this book. So many strong pieces of wisdom within these pages that not only had me rethink many of the conclusions I have on life but also allowed me to put new truths into action and feel the weight in the validity of these teachings.
I will re-read this for many years to come.
Feb 17, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: epl
For a start, readers should know that there is no "Japanese phenomenon" here. This is psychobabble based on Alfred Adler's teachings written by Japanese authors. Framing this book as a "Japanese phenomenon" misleads the reader, and is an outright misrepresentation by the authors.

This book is loosely based on Socrates' teachings (I'm being generous here) and the Adlerian School of Psychotherapy, born out the same movement (the Vienna Psychoanalytic Society) that gave us Sigmund Freud and Carl Jun
Alessandra Nigro
I rarely leave reviews here on Goodreads, but this book has the potential to change lives.
It introduces the reader to so many new concepts, yet in such an approachable way, that every chapter ends with an aha-moment.
Read this book if you're into personal development, if you want to completely change your opinion about happiness.
Read it if you are struggling with your introvert personality, if you have trauma to overcome and relationships to heal (especially with your parents).
Shauna Birkett
Jan 09, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
While I can acknowledge that this book added value to my life, I had *serious* issues with several points of this "phenomenon" which is ultimately why I am giving it only one star.

I'd like to start by saying that I listened to this on Audible and that was a pleasant experience - as it's written as a dialogue between two people, it is read in that style. If you are going to pick this up, I highly recommend the audio version.

I found myself yelling in my car at the old philosopher several times, ag
J & J
I didn't like the "play" format of this book. For me, it would have been much more effective in a traditional non-fiction style. ...more
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My words would be worthless so I just quote:"It is similar with the shock experienced by someone who, after many years of being nearsighted, puts on glasses for the first time" ...more
Giang Le
Jan 14, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-help, kindle
I tried to like this book, I really did. I unlearned all of my predisposition and tried to embrace the school of Adlerian psychology that this book preached, but to no avail. To be fair, I completely agree with many of the ideas proposed in this book about how to live your life healthier, like the separation of tasks and that you shouldn't care about how everyone around you think of you, but that's only because I have always considered them to be common sense instead of some profound, radical id ...more
Emma Sea
May 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
TLDR: bought a dead tree copy for my daughter. If I leave her with any useful legacy I'd like it to be introducing her to this book.


So, it's not that I'm not a fan of the Socratic Method, it's just that the particular format of this book is tiresome. It's written as a dialogue over 5 sessions between The Philosopher and The Youth, and 90% of my irritation is because of the Youth is written as both extremely abrasive in manner, and dense as a plank.

However the contents of the book are excellen
Apparently "there is no trauma" because you simply just choose to be traumatized and it's really just up to you whether you want to magically snap your finger and get out of this damn trauma rut.
So why dontcha already, huh?!
Okay. Not that I'm a huge fan of Adler anyway but this is brazenly taking out of context the man's writings too.
This book read a lot like other pseudo-scientific books like this whole law of attraction stuff that's been running rampant in the past 10+ years. Ironically the
Nov 25, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology, audiobook
Got halfway through and had to give up. The book is set out as a Socratic discussion, but I didn’t like that. It felt condescending rather than interesting.

I don’t think I agree with many of Alfred Adler’s ideas as represented in this book, particularly his views on trauma, which he says “does not exist”. Maybe that’s a helpful way of thinking for some people, but it doesn’t sit well with me. His ideas might be more nuanced, but if they are, I don’t think the book did much to convey that. It wa
Jul 30, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book is insulting to the field of psychology and to humanity in general. The premise is that abuse and trauma just need to be forgotten and people just need to move on because they're choosing to be traumatized.

If you don't enjoy critical thinking and just want to brainwashed then this book is for you.
Sandhya Chandramohan
Alfred Adler is the relatively unknown 3rd giant of psychology after the likes of Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung but with arguably the most ground-breaking work of any. Adlerian psychology feels counter-intuitive at first glance in many ways, but one powerful idea after another it makes it's case, creating one of the strongest, most foolproof frameworks ever for thinking. I don't think I will ever go back to being the same person again, now that I have read this book.

Adlerian psychology is opposed
Amber (amberinbookland)
Jun 22, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Sometimes a book comes into your life at the precise moment that you need it. For me, this is one of those books. This does not mean that I completely agree with all of the ideas that were explored (particularly in relation to the rather flippant and simplistic explanations of self-harm or the fact that its discussions failed to address psychosomatic disorders as a potential exception to some of the arguments). However, this book provided so many light bulb moments to me and related to my cu
Jul 25, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
Find my full review here: https://bound2books.co/2019/08/02/wha...

I bought The Courage to Be Disliked because I was curious to learn more about what the book had to offer. There has been an explosion of self-help literature in the 21st Century, and it probably has something to do with our chronic feelings of loneliness, burnout, and fear of not fitting into society. Japanese ways of thinking have also become extremely popular due to the rise of Marie Kondo. So this book seemed to hit all the rig
Nishant Nikhil
Dec 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The content of this book is amazing.
I remember me discussing with Himanshu, Abhishek and Ankit, a lot of things which are related to the book. This book gave words to those musings and structured a lot of mental models for me. It made me wonder about a lot of experiences I had and am having. One advice: start acting the way this book suggests at least for the time span of the read.
Few lessons:
- Your past doesn't determine you, it is how you make of it.
- Don't rush for answers, arrive at them. (*
Miss Maya
Mar 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychological
"The courage to be happy, also includes the courage to be disliked."
I didn't know how much I needed to read this book until I read it. I know it's in the so-called "self-help" category but in my opinion, this is NOT a self-help book, at least not as we know it. Although the title implies not being concerned about what others might think of you (if they ever do), fortunately, this is not the only thing discussed here, it's actually one of the many. Yet the book isn't lost in its own context which
Feb 12, 2022 rated it really liked it
I audibly groaned when this book opened with a provocative and a little scandalous chapter that claims “there is no trauma”, claiming we all have complete control of our lives and can forget about and set aside the past and past traumata if we just want to. I’ve read something similar from a different author a couple of years ago and was really appalled by the impertinence and lack of empathy, which tended to slip into the realm of victim shaming, and really don’t need to read another book on th ...more
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Despite the cringeworthy title, this ended up being a brilliant book. I think I'll go back to it often. ...more
Alfie Yee
Alfred Adler? Was my first thoughts when I picked up this book. It was explained that the he was among the 3 titans of modern psychology and proponent of Teleology that contrasted with the aetiology principles of Jung and Freud. Like Aristotle and Kant before him, Adler believed that the individual should find meaning in life through the reference of one's purpose and contribution to community rather than reference the causes and effects of one's background or history to explore his future i.e: ...more
HP Saucerer
Jul 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Well this was a refreshing read! Not at all what I was expecting and quite unlike any other 'self-help' book I've ever come across. I really liked the book's presentation style, which basically takes the form of a conversation between a discontent youth and an erudite philosopher well versed in the teachings of Austrian psychologist Alfred Adler. Back and forth the two go, duking it out, with the cynical youth on the offensive, countered with quick ripostes from the astute philosopher.

Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very gentle introduction to Adlerian psychology and the setting for this is amazing. Truly a great read and definitely makes you think more about the world around you and how your perspectives can really be changed if you just allow yourself to.
Jan 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I change and the world changes. Wonderful book.
Andreia Fernandes
You do not live to satisfy the expectations of others. If you are not living your life for yourself, who is living it for you?
A deep explanation of Alfred Adler's "Individual Psychology Theory." LOVED IT!
If you like this book, you may like Solitude: In Pursuit of a Singular Life in a Crowded World.
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Ichiro KISHIMI Philosopher, Adlerian psychologist and translator of English and German languages. Born in 1956.

M.A.in philosophy from Kyoto University. Director of the Japanese Society of Adlerian psychology. Former counselor at Maeda Clinic in Kyoto and has taught philosophy and ancient Greek at various institutions such as Kyoto University of Education and Nara Women's University.

He presently t

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