The War of Art Summary 2023 - Deepstash

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The War of Art Summary

About The War of Art Book

What keeps so many of us from doing what we long to do? Why is there a naysayer within? How can we avoid the roadblocks of any creative endeavor—be it starting up a dream business venture, writing a novel, or painting a masterpiece?

The War of Art identifies the enemy that every one of us must face, outlines a battle plan to conquer this internal foe, then pinpoints just how to achieve the greatest success.

The War of Art emphasizes the resolve needed to recognize and overcome the obstacles of ambition and then effectively shows how to reach the highest level of creative discipline.

Think of it as tough love . . . for yourself.

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The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

4.5/5 (1047 reviews)

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This book was recommended to me and it did not disappoint. These were the key insights. Identify and follow your dreams!

Finding Your Purpose

Finding Your Purpose

Finding what we are really good at is only half the battle, the hardest part is putting forth the effort and motivation to actually work towards it


We All Have Internal Resistance

We All Have Internal Resistance

Everyone struggles with Resistance. Resistance is the little voice that tells us to procrastinate, avoid, and do anything but work on our passion


<p>Resistance manifests itself...

Resistance manifests itself in the form of fear of failure, procrastination, and self-doubt



  • Exercise and diet are the most common forms of failure that most will experience. Most of us will bring home a piece of exercise equipment or pay for a gym membership, only to skip the workout
  • If you've ever experienced an internal battle that prevents you from achieving a goal you've set for yourself, you've experienced what calls "Resistance"
  • Resistance is a toxic force that brings poverty, disease and dysfunction. It deforms your spirit and keeps you from accomplishing your dreams.



  • Resistance comes in at onset of you acting towards your dream and stays with you throughout the journey. 
  • Resistance becomes even worse as you get closer to achieving your goal.
  • Resistance will often manifest itself in different ways, including fear, procrastination and criticism. Of these, self-doubt is the greatest enemy. It can serve as an indicator of aspiration because it reflects our love for our dreams. It lies to us, making us believe we are on the right path to achieving goals. Lastly it paralyses us and prevent us from going for what we set out to achieve.



  • Individuals who can past Resistance are those who accept they are amateurs. These individuals accept where they are when it comes to their skills levels. This doesn't mean they have no interest in improving their skills.
  • To beat Resistance, you cannot go at your goals half-assed. Part time pursuits will not get you to the level that you want. You've got to be a professional who takes on their goal full-time. 
  • You've got to have the necessary dedication to achieve perfection within your field of choice.


Why are you procrastinating?

You never say "I'm not going to write my book", instead you say "I'm going to write my book, but I'll start from tomorrow". Well it's 'Resistance' which is forcing you to procrastinate. It is this resistance which distracts you to do something less important.


What is Resistance?

Steven Pressfield says that there is a negative force, 'Resistance', surrounding you, which prevents you from doing your work.

The more important the work the more is the resistance. Similarly, the less important the task, the less resistance you feel. It is this resistance which diverts your mind to less important task surrounding you, which gives you instant gratification and satisfaction.

You know that preparing for the upcoming exam is the most important task to complete. But resistance will force you to find satisfaction in watching a Youtube video, or say read a blog.


How to fight Resistance?

The only way to fight resistance and overcome procrastinating is to sit down and start doing the most important task. And eventually, you will become a 'professional'. Even if you have zero progress, you just need to sit down and think of doing the task. You need to think like a professional and avoid the 'amateur' inside you.

If you feel more resistance while performing any task, remember, it's the most important thing for you to do.


We tend to get stuck in our creative process no matter what our line of work/hobby/interest is. And we often at times think that we are the only ones that find ourselves in this stuck position. But reading a great author like Steve Pressfields book and getting to know in his own words that he once also found himself stuck as well as how he overcame it can be very useful.

For Creativity

This book can be helpful with inspiring on how to overcome struggles with creativity!


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