generallyanxious.com

The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield

Although The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield focuses on artists achieving their creative dreams, this book can apply to people that struggle with anxiety & depression.
 
Pressfield describes “Resistance” as the force that prevents us from achieving, from being our best. We all have to contend with it, whatever the form. It causes us to procrastinate, to run from a challenge, to stay home under the covers.

“The enemy is a very good teacher.” — the Dalai Lama

Pressfield demands we all need to get to work, everyday, to learn how to live with this hand we were dealt, to live with it so we can achieve happiness.
 
Below are the quotes that moved me most. Read the first quote below – a profound statement on the severe effect Resistance has on society.

If tomorrow morning by some stroke of magic every dazed and benighted soul woke up with the power to take the first step toward pursuing his or her dreams, every shrink in the directory would be out of business. Prisons would stand empty. The alcohol and tobacco industries would collapse, along with the junk food, cosmetic surgery, and infotainment businesses, not to mention pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, and the medical profession from top to bottom. Domestic abuse would become extinct, as would addiction, obesity, migraine headaches, road rage, and dandruff.

…you must declare Resistance evil, for it prevents us from achieving the life God intended when He endowed each of us with our own unique genius. Genius is a Latin word; the Romans used it to denote an inner spirit, holy and inviolable, which watches over us, guiding us to our calling.

…The professional cannot take rejection personally because to do so reinforces Resistance. Editors are not the enemy; critics are not the enemy. Resistance is the enemy. The battle is inside our own heads. We cannot let external criticism, even if it’s true, fortify our internal foe. That foe is strong enough already.

…the battle must be fought anew every day.
…I go to sleep content, but my final thought is of Resistance. I will wake up with it tomorrow. Already I am steeling myself.
…The amateur believes he must first overcome his fear; then he can do his work. The professional knows that fear can never be overcome.
…Resistance has no strength of its own; its power derives entirely from our fear of it.
…We feed it with power by our fear of it. Master that fear and we conquer Resistance.

…We’re not born with unlimited choices. We can’t be anything we want to be. We come into this world with a specific, personal destiny. We have a job to do, a calling to enact, a self to become. We are who we are from the cradle, and we’re stuck with it. Our job in this lifetime is not to shape ourselves into some ideal we imagine we ought to be, but to find out who we already are and become it.
…Every breath we take, every heartbeat, every evolution of every cell comes from God and is sustained by God every second, just as every creation, invention, every bar of music or line of verse, every thought, vision, fantasy, every dumb-ass flop and stroke of genius comes from that infinite intelligence that created us and the universe in all its dimensions, out of the Void, the field of infinite potential, primal chaos, the Muse. To acknowledge that reality, to efface all ego, to let the work come through us and give it back freely to its source, that, in my opinion, is as true to reality as it gets.
…You shame the angels who watch over you and you spite the Almighty, who created you and only you with your unique gifts, for the sole purpose of nudging the human race one millimeter farther along its path back to God. Creative work is not a selfish act or a bid for attention on the part of the actor. It’s a gift to the world and every being in it. Don’t cheat us of your contribution. Give us what you’ve got.