Friday, May 25, 2007

How to Overcome Resistance

In The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles, Steven Pressfield writes about Resistance:

Most of us have two lives. The life we live and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands Resistance.

... Late at night have you experienced a vision of the person you might become, the work you could accomplish, the realized being you were meant to be? Are you a writer who doesn't write, a painter who doesn't paint, an entrepreneur who never starts a venture? Then you know what Resistance is.

Steven writes that the principles we use to do our day jobs, apply to our artistic aspirations:

1. We show up everyday
2. We show up no matter what.
3. We stay on the job all day.
4. We are committed over the long haul.
5. The stakes for us are high and real.
6. We accept remuneration of our labor.
7. We do not overidentify with our jobs.
8. We master the technique of our jobs.
9. We have a sense of humor about our jobs.
10. We receive blame or praise in the real world.

I think there's a lot to be said for showing up, consistently taking action, and making little improvements over time. Maybe my inner artist isn't waiting for brilliant inspiration after all. He just wants a routine and some practice.

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