Have you ever sat down to do something really important to you, not just an urgent busy thing you have to do, but something that really matters to you....
.....only to find that you just can’t get going - it almost feels as though there is an actual force acting against your best intentions and stopping you from doing your work?
You have just encountered Resistance...and according to Steven Pressfield it is very real indeed. Pressfield always spells Resistance with a capital ‘R’ so as to afford it the respect it deserves, and not to take it lightly.
The War of Art delves into Resistance works against us - and how we can deal with it.
About Steven Pressfield
Before finally figuring Resistance out, Steven Pressfield was a writer who didn’t write, and had carved out a series of shadow careers that had prevented him from committing to what he really wanted to do - to write.
He finally figured out Resistance and ‘The War of Art’ is the first of a series of books he has written on the subject.
I made so many notes when reading this book, but finally managed to decide on six points that particularly resonated with me. I could easily have done ten more...in fact I’m sure thst I’ll return to this book again to review some of the points that didn’t make the A-list this time around.
We all know how tomorrow, or someday never quite seems to come. However, thinking in this way as the advantage of preventing us from facing up to the fact that we are never going to work on our dreams, as we will do so someday.....
What’s coming in the way of us getting down to it right now is Resistance.
Resistance is the force that stops us from getting down to work, particularly if it’s something that’s really important to us.
Pressfield imagines this as some real, unstoppable force, and compares it to the Teminator, the Alien, and the shark from Jaws. It’s relentless and won’t stop in it’s mission to stop you from doing what you have to do.
I have to admit that I was experiencing some resistance as I sat down to write this. This is one of my favourite books - it means a lot to me - and I was working against a deadline...and yet I still felt this invisible force-field type of effect, that was stopping me from getting down to writing.
Do the work
So what can you do about Resistance?
Simply sit down right now and get on with your work.
Simple - but not easy.
Clear your desk
In order to be clear about what we have to do, we have to create aa clear, orderly space for us to do our work. Resistance loves chaos and so we have to do our utmost to keep clutter and bad habits at bay.
Take it a day at a time
Doing the work is not glamorous - it’s about gritting it out, one day after another.
Why you are here
It pays to pause for a while and think about this, and see if it resonates with you. If it does - take action.
I’m in a book circle, and every month I draw a new set of booknotes based on the month’s book.
I’ll post future booknotes here in due course.
A selection of other books by Steven Pressfield:
-Turning Pro - Goes into more depth about turning professional.
-Do the Work - Getting stuff done.
All worth checking out!