Man’s Search for Meaning: (Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #23)

Man’s Search for Meaning Viktor Frankl, notes by Kingston S. Lim

Below are my personal notes of Man’s Search for Meaning. These highlights were what I used to write my personal development book, Wiser Next Week, a condensation of many different self improvement books.

Experiences in a Concentration Camp

  • Yes a man can get used to anything, but do not ask us how.
  • It is not the physical pain which hurts most, for adults and children, it is the mental agony caused by the injustice, the unreasonableness of it all
  • A man’s suffering is similar to the behavior of gas. If a certain quantity of gas is pumped into an empty chamber, it will fill the chamber completely and evenly, no matter how big the chamber.
    • This suffering fills the human soul and conscious mind, no matter whether the suffering is great or little. Therefore the “size” of human suffering is absolutely relative
  • Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms, to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way
    • The sort of person the prisoner became was the result of an inner decision, and not the result of camp influence alone. 
  • Man’s inner strength may raise him above his outward fate
  • A man who could not see the end of his “provisional existence” was not able to aim at the ultimate goal in life. He ceased living for the future
    • A man who let himself decline because he could not see any future goal found himself occupied with retrospective thoughts
    • It is a peculiarity of man that he can only live by looking to the future 
  • Most men in concentration camps think that the real opportunities of life had passed. Yet in reality, there was an opportunity and a challenge
  • Those who know how close the connection is between the state of mind of a man, his courage and hope, or lack of them, and the state of immunity of his body will understand that the sudden loss of hope and courage can have a deadly effect. 
  • He who has a why to live for can bear with almost any how
  • It doesn’t really matter what we expected from life, but rather what life expected from us. We needed to stop asking about the meaning of life and instead to think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life, daily and hourly. 
    • Our answer must consist in right action and in right conduct
  • Life’s tasks are also very real and concrete. They form man’s destiny, each answer influences the next task
  • All we have done, whatever great thoughts we may have had, and all we have suffered, all this is not lost, though it is past, we have brought it into being. 
When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves. Viktor Frankl, design by Kingston S. Lim

If these brief notes, peaked your interest in Man’s Search for Meaning, you can check it out on Amazon here.

And be sure to check out my book, Wiser Next Week.

All Previous Entries:

The Magic of Thinking Big: Ultra Condensed Cliff Notes #1

Millionaire Fastlane: Ultra Condensed Cliff Notes #2

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #3

30 Lessons for Living: Tried & True Advice from the Wisest Americans: Ultra Condensed Cliff Notes #4

Awaken the Giant Within: Ultra Condensed Cliff Notes #5

The End of Jobs: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #6

Slipstream Time Hacking: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #7

Think and Grow Rich: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #8

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #9

Mindset: The New Psychology of Success: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #10

The Obstacle is the Way: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #11

Meditations: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #12

Why Loyalty Matters: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #13

Walden: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #14

Self Reliance and Other Essays: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #15

Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #16

Letters From A Stoic: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #17

On the Shortness of Life: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #18

Principles Life & Work: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #19

As A Man Thinketh: Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #20

Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreements without Giving In (Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #21)

The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking: (Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #22)

18 thoughts on “Man’s Search for Meaning: (Ultra Condensed Cliffnotes #23)

  1. Really good book. Been using it a lot recently as a comforter to put problems in perspective.

    The lesson about forces beyond your control can take away everything, except how you react to a situation, is how I try to live my life.

    Liked by 1 person

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