Today I would like to review a fantastic and rather brief book called Do the Work, by Steven Pressfield. Some of you may have read his earlier book, The War of Art, which covers similar material. I found this new book to be even more succinct and relevant to my life. If you have been wanting to start or finish a project, but find that you can’t quite seem to get it done, this book is for you. The central premise is: that just as there are creative, inspiring, and motivational forces in the universe, there are also forces arrayed against us that keep us from our goals. If naming the enemy is the first step to victory, the author provides a clear name for these antagonistic forces: Resistance.
“Resistance is a repelling force. It’s aim is to shove us away, distract us, prevent us from doing our work.”
One good thing about Resistance you learn in Do the Work is that it always pushes back hardest against that which is most important or in our best interest to pursue. In that way, we can use it to guide us where we need to go. Just look for the thing in your life that is giving you a million reasons why you can’t or shouldn’t do it. I also enjoyed the advice to not do too much research on a project, because at a certain point all this analysis actually hurts your chances of completing your work. There was good advice on what to do when you hit a wall and how to drive a project to the finish line and hit send.
“On the field of the Self stand a knight and a dragon. You are the knight, Resistance is the dragon. The only discourse between the knight and the dragon is battle.”
If you want to get serious about doing reaching your next goal or completing that important project, check out Do the Work by Steven Pressfield.