Unlearn Book Summary - Unlearn Book explained in key points
Listen to the Intro

Unlearn summary

Humble the Poet

101 Simple Truths for a Better Life

4.2 (492 ratings)
12 mins

Brief summary

Unlearn by Humble the Poet is a guidebook for anyone looking to challenge their limiting beliefs and unlearn harmful habits. It encourages personal growth through reflection and action, offering inspiration and practical advice.

Table of Contents

    Summary of 4 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 4

    Truths about happiness

    For a species obsessed with obtaining happiness, we seem to make it awfully complicated.

    For starters, it’s common to subscribe to the idea that happiness is some elusive state, only made possible when a vast constellation of circumstances comes into alignment. Let’s be clear, unhappiness is simply our response to seeing that the vision in front of us doesn’t match the vision in our heads. That’s all there is to it. Unhappiness is just the gap between our expectations and our reality.

    So happiness isn’t some rare external phenomenon. It’s infinitely more straightforward than that. Happiness is our response to being in the moment – present with what is.

    Now, you may think, That’s all well and good when life is smooth sailing, but what about when life gets hard?

    The truth is, we have very little control over what happens to us. That’s why it’s so important to take control of how we interpret these circumstances. If we buy into the belief that happiness is a life free from obstacles, we’ll never be happy – even when life is smooth sailing.

    Life is more accurately thought of as a string of obstacles, one after the other. Some obstacles are objectively formidable – war breaking out in your homeland, for instance – while others are just annoying – coffee spilling on your laptop, for example. If we postpone our happiness until the day when obstacles become obsolete, we’ll be six feet under before we know it.

    Tied to this is the prevalent assumption that we must get more to be happy. This is true to an extent, but after our basic needs are met – think food, water, and shelter – it becomes a harmful stance to take.

    The pursuit of more is a game you’ll never win. There’ll always be another zero to add to your income, another exclusive experience to have, or another gadget to add to your collection.

    In reality, happiness has nothing to do with getting more – again, assuming the essentials for survival – and everything to do with needing less. Actively acknowledge everything you already have, everything you already get to experience, and you’ll find happiness will bubble up to the surface like a deep spring. You’ll come into the present moment. The gap between your expectations and reality will narrow.

    Life isn’t a fairytale, but you can rewrite some of those unhelpful internal narratives. While this means shedding the idea of one day arriving at a utopia where you have it all, in the end, it will actually inch you closer to the very thing you’re looking for: happiness itself.

    Want to see all full key ideas from Unlearn?

    Key ideas in Unlearn

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    What is Unlearn about?

    Unlearn (2014) is a collection of 101 short essays on how to live a better life. These succinct yet profound essays prompt you to challenge your own beliefs as well as the commonly held assumptions of wider society. The truths revealed about happiness, love, success, and truth itself aren’t always easy to hear, but they’re crucial insights into the nature of empowerment and freedom.

    Unlearn Review

    Unlearn (2019) by Humble the Poet is an inspiring book that challenges readers to question their beliefs and unlearn what they think they know. Here's why this book is definitely worth reading:

    • By providing refreshing perspectives on various aspects of life, this book encourages readers to think differently and embrace personal growth.
    • Through a mix of personal experiences, stories, and reflection exercises, Humble the Poet offers practical guidance to overcome obstacles and find fulfillment.
    • The book's raw and honest approach captivates readers, making it a compelling read that leaves a lasting impact.

    Who should read Unlearn?

    • Anyone feeling lost or stuck in life
    • Those looking to improve their relationships with others and themselves
    • Artists seeking inspiration

    About the Author

    Humble the Poet – otherwise known as Kanwer Singh – is a Canadian spoken-word artist and author. Formerly an elementary school teacher, he now boasts a YouTube channel with over 15 million views. His other books include How to Be Love(d) and Things No One Else Can Teach Us.

    Categories with Unlearn

    Book summaries like Unlearn

    People ❤️ Blinkist 
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked these summaries

    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    31 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    10+ years
    Experience igniting personal growth
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 7,000+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial

    Unlearn FAQs 

    What is the main message of Unlearn?

    The main message of Unlearn is to let go of outdated beliefs and behaviors in order to find personal growth and fulfillment.

    How long does it take to read Unlearn?

    The reading time for Unlearn varies depending on the reader's speed. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Unlearn a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Unlearn is definitely worth reading. It offers valuable insights and practical advice for personal transformation and self-discovery.

    Who is the author of Unlearn?

    The author of Unlearn is Humble the Poet.

    What to read after Unlearn?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Unlearn, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • You Can Fix Your Brain by Tom O’Bryan
    • Smarter Not Harder by Dave Asprey
    • Excellent Advice for Living by Kevin Kelly
    • The 16 Undeniable Laws of Communication by John C. Maxwell
    • How to be Love(d) by Humble the Poet
    • That Little Voice in Your Head by Mo Gawdat
    • Fast This Way by Dave Asprey
    • Magic Words by Jonah Berger
    • Fierce Conversations by Susan Scott
    • The Mindful Body by Ellen J. Langer