Daily Negations

“Daily Negations is exactly what the title suggests: a collection of negative thoughts, one for each day of the year. Like any other daily meditation books, it can be kept by the bed, on the coffee table or by the toilet. Daily Negations can be consulted first thing in the morning, or anytime during the day when a quick let-me-down is needed.

If you have a bleak view of life, Daily Negations will reinforce that view. The book may also be used by (or given to) people whose attitude in life is too sunny, too optimistic, too full of boundless strength and hope. Such people can come to a more normal, realistic world-view by daily consultation of Daily Negations.”

From the back cover of the book, which I’ve mentioned and quoted from once before. I gave the book a 5 star rating on goodreads, where the average rating is 4.56. A few more quotes below:

“Life doesn’t have to be something I actually live. Life can be something that happens while I am doing other things, like watching television or escaping into fantasy. The world won’t stop if I decide not to do anything. And it is easier not to do than to do. And the less I do, the less I can fail at.”

“All over the world, there are people much worse off than me who somehow manage to pick themselves up and go on. Their spirit should challenge and inspire me, but I prefer to believe that if they were in my position, they would be just as lazy and pathetic and useless as I am.”

“Each day brings me another 24 hours away from my youth. On the other hand, each day brings me 24 hours closer to my death. It will all be over before I know it.”

“In brief moments of clarity, it is plain to see that I can’t help myself, that no one else can help me and it will never get better. Fortunately, I am usually too deluded to ever face up to those simple truths.”

“Sometimes I console myself with the idea that even though I don’t do what I should do, at least I feel bad about it sometimes. At least I feel some guilt, and whenever I feel too much guilt, I can always overindulge in something that will distract me from my guilt, so that I dont’ really feel it. So I guess I’m really not very good at consoling myself.”

“I can see that it takes a lot of work to improve myself. Becoming the person I want to become will require enormous effort. I can recognize this, but I must always remember that deep down, I have no intention of doing what must be done: I won’t do anything today, and I probably won’t do anything tomorrow, or next week or next year. I will probably not improve very much, if at all. It is more likely that I will keep getting worse.”

“If I approach today with a negative attitude, I shouldn’t be surprised if things turn out badly. Similarly, if I approach today with a positive attitude, I shouldn’t be surprised if things turn out badly. As long as I’m alive, things will turn out badly.”

“Today will be a great day. Not for me of course—for me, it will be mediocre or terrible. But for somebody else, it will be an excellent day. I wish I were someone else. It sucks to be me.”

“Perhaps when I die, it will disappoint people who were counting on me. Perhaps something, or someone, will have trouble going on without me. Most likely though, my death won’t make any difference at all. Just like my life.”

“When I think of all the advantages I have had, I can feel even worse about how little I have accomplished. That is why it is so important to me to lie to myself, and tell myself that things were harder than they actually were, and that the obstacles in my way were not, for the most part, of my own making, and that all things considered, I did the best I could. These lies make me feel that I am better than other people (or at least as good), and that in turn makes me feel better about myself. It is so important to lie.”

“One thing I do is compare myself to other people: people I went to high school with who are more successful than I am, people in magazines and on TV who are better looking and more talented than I am, people at work who are smarter than I am and get promoted above me, and so on. I don’t like to do this, but I can’t help it, because I can’t control my bad habits, because I am an idiot.”

“Sometimes I think I’d like to get away for a while. But no matter where I go, there I am. There’s no escaping me. I might as well stay here.”

“There is no need to make excuses for myself when I make mistakes. Excuses involve creativity and energy. If I am too lazy and stupid to do something right, then I should be too lazy and stupid to explain myself.”

“Today I should try to do something I have never done before. Sometimes it is better to fail at something new, rather than to fail at the same old things.”

“Life may be looked at as a series of opportunities, but it is more accurate to look at life as a series of missed opportunities.”

This is great stuff! You can order the book here.

June 10, 2013 - Posted by | Books


  1. Reading this made me laugh. I think for the first time today, so thanks! 😉

    Those two are my favorites:

    “When I am tired, it is easy to believe that my exhaustion is the reason I am depressed and lonely and uninspired. But when I am well-rested, I can realize that these negative feelings are not a result of too little sleep. They are a result of my being a miserable, hopeless, misanthropic wretch.”

    “It’s not just that I’m stupid; it’s that I’m just smart enough to know how stupid I am. I wish I weren’t so stupid. Or that I were stupider.”

    Comment by wallowinmaya | June 11, 2013 | Reply

    • I laughed out loud a few times as well along the way – he really masters the use of hyperbole. The book is rather silly, but then again so are most of the self-help books it’s supposed to be a response to.

      Comment by US | June 12, 2013 | Reply

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