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Do the Work: Overcome Resistance and Get Out of Your Own Way
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Do the Work: Overcome Resistance and Get Out of Your Own Way

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  17,973 ratings  ·  1,147 reviews
Do the Work

Our enemy is not lack of preparation; it's not the difficulty of the project, or the state of the marketplace or the emptiness of our bank account.

The enemy is resistance.

The enemy is our chattering brain, which, if we give it so much as a nanosecond, will start producing excuses, alibis, transparent self-justifications and a million reasons why he can't/shouldn
Paperback, 114 pages
Published March 10th 2015 by Black Irish Entertainment LLC (first published January 1st 2011)
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Angie I would say that inner stress is *one* of the forces of resistance. Resistance takes on many forms, as many as necessary to stop you and then some.
Mihai Rosca I think it has something to do with the fact that Godin himself is an author.

Aside from being a businessman, he has spread his ideas through his nume…more
I think it has something to do with the fact that Godin himself is an author.

Aside from being a businessman, he has spread his ideas through his numerous books. And probably you don't get to have that many books published unless you do the actual work, unless you go all the way to the end and deliver. Over and over and over.

My personal take on things would be that Godin has lived most of the process described by Steven Pressfield and has recognized the necessity to push through some stages(less)
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Aaron Goldfarb
Apr 23, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“This is what you deserve. You could be good today. But instead you choose tomorrow.”

--Marcus Aurelius

I am not a rereader of books. I prefer to try the new as opposed to revisiting the old. But there are two books I reread every year, that are constantly with me, both in physical form and on my mind. The first is Marcus Aurelius's stoic masterpiece on how to live a life, "The Meditations." The best thing ever written in my opinion. The second is Steven Pressfield's "The War of Art," a brief mani
Sarah Wolfe
I really disliked this book. It's written from a very flawed (though perhaps redeemable) worldview containing obvious and repetitive ideas. (He also really needs to look up 'protean' in a thesaurus.)
While I'd hoped to get a little boost from this and perhaps recommend it to friends, I'll be giving it a wide berth. It's a piece of corny writing that would better be summed up thus: JUST DO IT.
In short, go do the work and don't waste an hour on this thing.
Todd Russell
This book read like I was sitting through a bad motivational speech complete with Powerpoint slides and spam-laced marketing buzzwords (the gigantic font words intended to drill the points into my brain). I have enjoyed other motivational books but this one didn't work for me. The concept was promising: motivate people to finish projects (books, movie scripts, etc), but the execution was off. Despite not drinking the Kool-aid I still adhered to the "just get it finished" message and am shipping ...more
Daniel Swensen
I think this should be required reading for any creative person who has found themselves wracked with self-doubt. Invaluable.
Sanjay Gautam
May 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Resistance is within you, but it's not you. Resistance is the dragon, and you are the knight. ...more
Apr 22, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There wasn't anything earth-shattering in this book. I've received bits and pieces of it from many different sources. With that said I was inspired reading it. The author's energy is contagious. There were several passages that really hit home, like Test Number One: How bad do you want it -- something I ask myself everyday. This quick read is like a can of Red Bull, it gave me wings. I highlighted many parts and will refer back to it in the future when I need a pick-me-up, especially when I cras ...more
Steven Pressfield is the truth.
Anne Bogel
Apr 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved Pressfield's excellent follow-up to The War of Art because in it he precisely pegs the particular forms of Resistance I'm prone to as a writer. (Research as resistance, anyone?)

If you enjoyed The War of Art I highly recommend moving on to Do the Work.
Apr 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Do the Work is one of those short, "Here's a helpful kick in the butt, so you won't feel you're all alone" kind of books. You can breeze through it in one sitting to know what it's about (as I did yesterday evening), and then keep it on your Kindle to go back to whenever you do need that kick instead of wallowing in any "Woe is me" waste of time. Lord knows we all need that kick sometimes.

This particular kick focuses on giving the reader a how-to push through their own resistance and lack of con
Brent Mair
Apr 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Steven Pressfield's short book is a brief reminder that we need to work through the many things that stop us from being productive and creative and complete what we are doing. He frames adversity in such a way that I am able to have more courage as I press on as a writer and aspiring influencer.

At the moment of this review it is free on Amazon's Kindle. I read it on my computer and iPhone.

Read on Kindle in 2011. Listened to on Audible in 2011.
Listened on Audible on August 13, 2012
Nadia Awadi
It called me on my shit, and for that : 3.5 stars. It was too short for a 4-star-rating.
Krystal Williams
Mar 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book about a year after reading The War of Art, and I found it to be a wonderful refresher about Resistance.

While this book is excellent, it does lack the depth of The War of Art. The War of Art explains the concept of Resistance in scandalous detail, while Do the Work does not. Instead, Do the Work is, according to Pressfield, "about getting off your behind and starting something." Therefore, I do not recommend it as a standalone. I don’t believe that the reader will get as much v
Aug 27, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I understand what he's going for and everything, but I completely and totally disagree with about 90% of his arguments and recommendations. I understand overstating a concept to make a point, and everything, but I had a deep, visceral reaction to the vast majority of his claims. Clearly, I am not the person this book was written for, and that's fine. To his credit, Pressfield does acknowledge that his methods are not for everyone, and if we want to vehemently disagree, more power to us, as long ...more
Elizabeth A
Jan 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2016, art
This slight book (really an essay) is a swift kick in the butt. If you have a project, any project, and find yourself procrastinating, this little book is a wonderful guide to help you get going. It has wonderful nuggets like, "Start before you're ready." There is nothing totally new in this book, but I found the concise advice and tips very useful, and this quick read is akin to having a personal trainer help give you the push you need to get better at whatever it is that you are trying to do. ...more
Feb 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was in the middle of a writing project.
I needed to read this book. I needed the kick in the pants to keep going despite the doubt and fear. I needed the insight it gave about creating my plot. Recommended to anyone starting a big, scary project or just staring at a blank canvas.
Abhishek Kona
Jul 16, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Barely a book, mostly a poster with collection of slogans.

I do not remember anything I read from it. SKIP
Emma Sea
I really like Pressfield's motivational books, and for me they work as a good kick in the pants when I need one (i.e. frequently). At the same time, I'm not at all sure I actually buy into his basic premise (spoiler: this means I think it's a crock of shit)

"We've been conditioned to imagine that the darkness that we see in the world and feel in our own hearts in only an illusion [but] There is an enemy. There is an intelligent, active, malign force working against us."

However, while I think this
Apr 21, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
As a BzzAgent I got to read this book and review it. It was a really fast read, only took me an hour. It is a motivational book to get you going on any project that you may have for yourself. It talks about resistance and all the things that hold us back from accomplishing our goals. The book gives endless examples of book writing goals. I felt that this book was written for authors and not for me. I was not motivated to do anything. I gave it 2 stars on Good Reads. The Kindle edition of Do the ...more
May 23, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: business, audiobook
When Shia LaBeouf screams "Just do it!" into a camera, you have 2 thoughts:
1) This person is certifiably insane.
2) I should probably just do it.

This book is like that. Good kick in the pants, 2 or 3 practical tips that are worth the read, but I found myself distracted by the crazy guy in the room.
Brittany Barden
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read this book in under 45 minutes. I love that the design of the book facilitates the message of the book... don't overthink, just do the work. Well worth the read. ...more
Mohamed Al-Ali
10 out of 5
Farnoosh Brock
Jul 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business-spirit
"On the field of the Self stand a knight and a dragon. You are the knight. Resistance is the dragon."

Resistance is not just an annoying feeling at the pit of our stomachs. Apparently, it is so much more. It is the internal demon that is dead set on destroying our creative powers, eradicating our motives of self-expression, and scaring the living daylights out of us every time we set out to do something authentic and inspired. Just great, right?! Resistance is the antagonist in this brilliant, c
Carol Apple
May 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This short but effective book is a really a firm lecture for people with creative goals. Pressfield delivers his interesting approach for how to cut through the zillions of distractions and reasons to procrastinate and tells us how not to give up in despair, so we can really get to work on our writing project, business venture, or artistic masterpiece. Beginning is the hardest part but there are pitfalls along the way that will, for example, cause a writer to fail to finalize that last chapter o ...more
Nov 05, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It's hard for me to figure out who would enjoy or at least benefit from this book. It's slight, with lots of typography size and position manipulation, the sort of thing your mother might pick up as an impulse on checkout from the greeting card store. You get all the requisite bulleted and numbered lists, mantras, and other supposedly short themes you're supposed to remember in daily life. But to what end? The general theme is that it's more productive just to get started on a project than to re ...more
Natalie Wakes
Jan 30, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Amy Landino
Aug 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great recommendation as I'm preparing to write my first book and wanted a kick in the butt. You know it worked when you are getting such great advice that you actually feel guilty to continue to read because you want to just get started on your work.

Amazing lessons of resistance, it's power and it's true existence. This is an incredible emery that takes so many forms and I'm so motivated by this book to take it on and kill it.

Kevin Jennings
Dec 02, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: currently-own
I had the pleasure of reading Steven Pressfield's "The War of Art" a few weeks ago. My only disappointment was that it lacked next steps and guidelines for how to proceed beyond a few core mantras. However, "Do The Work" is the perfect companion to "The War of Art." It fills in the gaps and provides the how-to's that seemed to be missing from "The War of Art." It too is a nice, short read designed to only briefly take you away from really matters---the work itself. ...more
I've been reading this while working on a big choreography project. Steven became like a trusted mentor and gave me the best advice at all the right times. Love his work. Definitely read the War of Arr first, though. ...more
Dustan Woodhouse
Brilliant piece of work!
Nick Imrie
I'm super-salty that I paid £2.99 for this pamphlet. It was just a collection of motivational phrases in big font. ...more
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I was born in Port of Spain, Trinidad, in 1943 to a Navy father and mother.

I graduated from Duke University in 1965.

In January of 1966, when I was on the bus leaving Parris Island as a freshly-minted Marine, I looked back and thought there was at least one good thing about this departure. "No matter what happens to me for the rest of my life, no one can ever send me back to this freakin' place a

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