I’m reading the book The War of Art by Steven Pressfield , not to be confused with The Art of War, and with this past week of writing It’s already paid for itself 10 times over.
It’s broken into 3 books. The first book is on “Resistance” and how to spot it. The second book is on combating resistance. The third is about going beyond resistance (which I haven’t gotten to yet).
Book 1 - What is Resistance?
Here are some quotes about what Pressfield calls Resistance:
"There's a secret that real writers know that wannabe writers don't, and the secret is this: It's not the writing part that's hard. What's hard is sitting down to write. What keeps us from sitting down is Resistance.”
"You know, Hitler wanted to be an artist…Call it an overstatement, but I’ll say it anyway: It was easier for Hitler to start World War II than it was for him to face a blank square of canvas.”
Where to find Resistance:
- In the pursuit of any calling in writing, painting, music, film, dance, or any creative art, however marginal or unconventional.
- In the launching of an entrepreneurial venture or enterprise, for-profit or otherwise.
- Any diet or health regimen.
- Any program of spiritual advancement.
- Any activity whose aim is tighter abdominal’s.
- Any course or program designed to overcome an unwholesome habit or addiction.
- Education of every kind.
- Any act of political, moral, or ethical courage, including the decision to change for the better some unworthy pattern of thought or conduct in ourselves.
- The undertaking of an enterprise or endeavor whose aim is to help others.
- Any act that entails commitment of the heart. The decision to get married, to have children, to weather a rocky patch in a relationship.
- The taking of any principled stand in the face of adversity.
Basically any act that rejects immediate gratification in favor of long-term growth, health, or integrity.
One of things I like about the book is how Pressfield structures it. Most pages are only written halfway down with the point he’s making on each one. I’m going to write in the future on the other two parts, but just wanted to give you any idea of what Pressfield calls "The most toxic force on the planet."