But every sun casts a shadow, and genius's shadow is Resistance. As powerful as is our soul's call, so potent are the forces of Resistance arrayed against it. We're not alone if we've been mowed down by Resistance; millions of good men and women have bitten the dust before us. And here's the biggest bitch: We don't even know what hit us. I never did. From ages 24 to 32, Resistance kicked my a** from East Coast to West and back again 13 times; and, I never even knew it existed. I looked everywhere for the enemy and failed to see it right in front of my face. I knew I wanted to write novels, but I could not finish what I started. The closer I got, the more ways I'd find to screw it up.

Look in your own heart. Right now, a still, small voice is piping up, telling you, as it has 10,000 times before, the calling that is yours and yours alone. You know it. No one has to tell you. And unless I'm crazy, you're no closer to taking action on it than you were yesterday or will be tomorrow—because of Resistance.

As powerful as this dragon is, there is one thing we must remember: It comes from within us. Resistance has no strength of its own. Every ounce of juice it possesses comes from within us. We feed it with power by fearing it. Master that fear and conquer Resistance. There never was a moment—and never will be—when we were without the power to alter our destiny. This second, we can turn the tables on Resistance. How? This second, we can sit down and do our work.

The War of Art This text was adapted from The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield, who is the author of The Legend of Bagger Vance: A Novel of Golf and the Game of Life and 11 other books.

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