The Obstacle Is the Way by Ryan Holiday - Highlights
February 15, 2021 · 2 min · Saeed
you can focus your energy exclusively on solving problems, rather than reacting to them.
When you worry, ask yourself, What am I choosing to not see right now?
We are A-to-Z thinkers, fretting about A, obsessing over Z, yet forgetting all about B through Y.
Think progress, not perfection.
Okay, you’ve got to do something very difficult. Don’t focus on that. Instead break it down into pieces. Simply do what you need to do right now. And do it well. And then move on to the next thing. Follow the process and not the prize.
The process is about doing the right things, right now.
We wrongly assume that moving forward is the only way to progress, the only way we can win. Sometimes, staying put, going sideways, or moving backward is actually the best way to eliminate what blocks or impedes your path.
Problems, as Duke Ellington once said, are a chance for us to do our best. Just our best, that’s it. Not the impossible. We must be willing to roll the dice and lose. Prepare, at the end of the day, for none of it to work.
We don’t get to choose what happens to us, but we can always choose how we feel about it.
Life is a process of breaking through these impediments—a series of fortified lines that we must break through. Each time, you’ll learn something. Each time, you’ll develop strength, wisdom, and perspective. Each time, a little more of the competition falls away. Until all that is left is you: the best version of you.
As the Haitian proverb puts it: Behind mountains are more mountains.
First, see clearly. Next, act correctly. Finally, endure and accept the world as it is.