Bloody hell! It’s been a while since we had a book review over here hasn’t it? That just shows how manic life has become of late (P.S. I don’t feel bad in starting a blog post with ‘Bloody hell’ when the book I’m reviewing is called ‘F**k it’).
If you know me in real life, you may, or may not know (I’m not sure how well I hide it) that I have a constant battle between perfectionism and procrastination. For me, having a clean and tidy house is more than simply hygiene, or being house proud. It’s actually my way of gaining some control over my life and trying to gain people’s approval. My way of showing I am enough and I am good enough. I’ll let you Psychoanalyse what that means about me… I know, but I’m not quite comfortable with bearing all on this blog just yet…
The thing is, sometimes ‘done is better than perfect’. I know this. It makes sense. But I don’t find it easy. With an almost four-year-old and a baby on the way, as well as lofty ambitions to juggle life alongside this, I know that my life, and therefore, my control, is soon going to spiral out of my control. I spoke to Mr H about this a while back. We both knew it was going to happen. We had to accept it, but how could we make our peace with it? How could I cope with the crumbs on the carpet, milk stains on the couch and unmade bed without either beating myself up, or going completely the opposite way and just giving up and all of us contracting Dysentery?
Then, I remembered this book nestling away on bookshelf. What could be better for helping me to make my peace with chaos than a book entitled F**k it: the ultimate spiritual way?
The book’s author, John C. Parkin is the son of Anglican preachers who realised that saying ‘F**k it’ was equally as powerful as the Eastern wisdom he had been studying for some 20-years. He quit his job and he, his wife and family set up ‘F**k it retreats’ in Italy. If nothing else, it’s comforting to me to know that others have issues with saying ‘F**k it’, although, I would imagine if they can afford to attend a retreat in Italy, their issues stretch further than simply saying ‘F**k it’ to the pile of dirty laundry that I’m trying to ignore in the corner of the room.
Falling under the Hay House publishing house, this book is self-help. However, it’s not as prescriptive, or ‘alternative’ as many of the other Hay House titles I have previously read. In fact, the book is written in a very light-hearted, self-deprecating style. Sometimes, a little too much so and it can veer off tangent in places. That said, it’s a very quick, easy and amusing read.
‘F**k it’ looks at how this philosophy actually works in tandem with a host of traditional Eastern spiritual teachings, but is clearly much more accessible to us Westerners who are more familiar with swearing down our mobile phone on the Tube, than sitting under a Bodhi tree atop a hill.
The book discusses how to apply the ‘F**k it’ philosophy to everyday areas of your life, including: food, relationships, money, your job, parenting… and many other areas. Some of which will resonate with you, while others will just be committed to your memory bank. The section on parenting definitely struck a chord with me. If you’re at all into the concept of manifestation (I kind of am, if you can kind of be) then the ‘F**k it’ philosophy actually fits in quite well. Manifest what you want and F**k what you don’t.
I’ll be honest, the book wasn’t quite what I was expecting. In some areas I found it a bit flippant and matter of fact, but then perhaps that’s the point. However, it does challenge our values and perceptions of what’s important in life and what isn’t. Life and the constraints of the Western World try to tell us what we should focus our attention on, but do you know what if that doesn’t make you happy maybe it is time to say ‘F**k it’ and do your own thing?
Definitely worth a read if you’re feeling a bit out of kilter.