the War of Art by Steven Pressfield

You know what? 

I’ve heard a lot of buzz about this book called “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield

Some of my favourite writers and bloggers have been raving about it, so I thought, why not give it a go?

I was super excited to jump in, soak up some wisdom, get inspired, and maybe even discover a few life-changing nuggets of knowledge. 

And with “The War of Art audiobooks” available, I had options on how I wanted to consume this content.

But, I’ve got to be honest – it was a bit of a letdown for me.

I was hoping it’d be a mix of motivational and educational, but it didn’t really hit the mark on either front. 

Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade.

It’s got a ton of glowing 5-star reviews, and I’m genuinely chuffed for the folks who’ve found it helpful and inspiring.

It just wasn’t my cup of tea, I suppose.

(Disclosure: If you purchase through the link, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my blog, my dear reader!)

Book Overview: The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

Book TypeNon-fiction, Self-help, Creativity
Main FocusOvercoming resistance and embracing the professional mindset
Key TakeawayBecoming a professional involves a shift in attitude and work ethic
Reading DifficultyEasy to moderate

The War of Art: A Guide for Creative Minds

“The War of Art” is often hailed as a masterpiece for creative minds, perfect for those looking to tap into their artistic potential, whether that’s in art, business, or other creative pursuits. 

It’s all about tackling the inner resistance we face – you know, the fears, doubts, and distractions that hold us back from making something amazing.

After I read this book, I picked up “Think Like an Artist” by Will Gompertz, and let me tell you, it was a breath of fresh air. 

It was packed with more substance, depth, and it kept me hooked from start to finish.

Plus, it was super encouraging! 

If you’re curious, you can check out my review right here.

So, there you have it! 

If you’re curious about “The War of Art,” give it a try – who knows, it might resonate with you. 

But if you’re looking for something that really gets the creative juices flowing, “Think Like an Artist” might just be your next favourite read.

Key Insights and Takeaways from The War of Art

So, I’ve been reflecting on the main takeaways from the book, and the second part really struck a chord with me. 

That’s where the author talks about the difference between a professional and an amateur

It’s all about how we approach our work and our attitude towards it day in, day out.

This hit home for me, especially since working from home can sometimes mess with our work ethic. 

I mean, it’s not like we’ve got a boss breathing down our necks, right?

But what sets professionals apart?

Here are a few key traits from the book that I’ve paraphrased:

  1. They show up every day.
  2. They show up no matter what.
  3. They stay on the job all day.
  4. They’re committed for the long haul.
  5. The stakes are high and real for them.
  6. They accept payment for their work.
  7. They don’t over identify with their jobs.
  8. They master the techniques of their jobs.
  9. They keep a sense of humour about their jobs.
  10. They face praise or blame in the real world.

I’m proud to say I follow the first three, at least, and maintain a strong work ethic.

After all, there’s no room for slacking just because we’re working from home!

Another nugget of wisdom I found was about self-validation, again paraphrasing:

A professional self-validates. They’re tough-minded, and whether they face indifference or adulation, they assess their work objectively. They’re always striving to improve and work harder, and they’ll be back at it again the next day.

Pros and Cons of The War of Art

Useful distinction between professionals and amateursWriting style is not engaging
Encourages self-validationBold lettering in Kindle version is distracting
Addresses resistance and internal battlesPortrays creating art as a miserable process

The War of Art’s Winning Points

What really resonated with me was the distinction between a professional and an amateur when it comes to their attitudes toward work. 

I found myself nodding along and thinking, “That’s so true!” while reading this part.

The War of Art’s Shortcomings

I have to admit, the writing style just didn’t do it for me. 

It felt distant and unengaging, leaving me feeling disconnected from the material (except for the time and money I invested in the book!).

The second part I mentioned earlier was a saving grace, but sadly, it was short-lived.

To add insult to injury, in my Kindle version, most of the book was written in bold letters, which I found incredibly distracting.

Now, I’m not one to fuss over grammar and such. I’ve read plenty of indie books filled with errors and typos, but when the story and writing style are captivating, I can easily overlook those issues.

However, with this book, as I struggled to stay engaged, the bold letters just intensified my frustration.

The creative journey can definitely be challenging and filled with internal battles. 

But I also believe it’s a joyful, even blissful endeavour – a labour of love.

So, it’s no surprise that the author’s portrayal of creating art as a miserable process didn’t sit well with me.

Where to Purchase The War of Art by Steven Pressfield

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(Disclosure: If you purchase through the link, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my blog, my dear reader!)

Final Thoughts on The War of Art

Upon looking back at my experience with The War of Art, it’s evident that the book has both valuable insights and areas where it falls short.

While the differentiation between professionals and amateurs proved thought-provoking, and the idea of self-validation resonated, the writing style and depiction of the creative process were less appealing.

If the concept of battling resistance and adopting a professional mindset piques your interest, you might find The War of Art worth reading.

However, if a more engaging and inspiring representation of the creative journey is what you’re after, consider exploring alternative options.

If you’re considering giving it a try, you can find “The War of Art audiobooks” on platforms like Audible and Apple Books, as well as in print and e-book formats.

Ultimately, it’s your choice to determine if The War of Art aligns with your personal development goals and creative ambitions.

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