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  • Writer's pictureNishant Mittal

5th book of 2021: Loserthink by Scott Adams

This is my second read by Scott Adams. To check out my review of 'How to fail at almost anything and still win big', click here.

I love Scott Adams! He's the uncle I wish I had: rich, famous, successful, intelligent, inspiring and funny. What more could you ask for? I loved Dilbert comic strips in the daily newspapers ever since I was a kid. Little did I know that the guy behind those comics reinvented himself so many times! He worked in the corporate America for 16 years, started making comics, became huge, turned an entrepreneur (and failed), and is now a bestselling (and beloved) author and pioneering political commentator. Infinite respect! By the way, I didn't tell you about the personal struggles he overcame. They'll make you flinch!

In Loserthink, Scott tells us about the wrong mental habits people often trap themselves in. You see it all the time on TV and Social Media. People engage in vicious debates and arguments on various topics (including politics) and end up sounding like total idiots. Useless arguments aside, people often build mental prisons which prevents them from actually moving forward. Consider this:

How much do you care about other people's embarrassing moments? Probably not a lot. And how many times did you stop yourself from doing something important, due to the fear of embarrassment? Loserthink.

How many times did you make ambitious goals that never went anywhere? And when was the last time you stuck to a good system of habits which could actually work? You prefer goals over systems? Loserthink.

And so on...

Loserthink is a collection of models intended to help you break out of these mental prisons. Scott hopes that after reading the book, you make better decisions (and better arguments) while trying to navigate the mess that is life. Personally, I liked the book. But not as much as 'How to fail..'. That one was a masterpiece! What I felt missing in this one was that "big idea". That north star. In the other book, the big idea was Scott's incredibly interesting and inspiring life story. How he failed and succeeded. How he got cured of extraordinarily rare and incapacitating illnesses (he couldn't speak for three years and hold a pen to draw, for a long time), and so on. But this one felt like a collection of tools without that emotional pull. It felt like an important instruction manual, but with less of signature Scott Adams' humanity, humor and wit. It began with some terrific and intelligent jokes, but the breeze didn't last as long.

Nevertheless, I gained a lot from the book and I'm sure you will as well. Maybe I wasn't as overwhelmed because I've read too many books of the same genre? I'm a huge Scott Adams fan and consider him right up there with Malcolm Gladwell, Michael Lewis and Nassim Taleb. Just buy his books already. :)

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