Read The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday Free Online
Book Title: The Obstacle is the Way|
The author of the book: Ryan Holiday
Edition: Profile Books
Date of issue: 2015
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 631 KB
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Loaded: 1099 times
Reader ratings: 6.8
Read full description of the books:
Great advice, everyone: overcome adversity. Just do it! For example, if you have a contract from Penguin to write a self-help book but you have absolutely nothing to say, don't fret. This is an opportunity. You interned for a guy who wrote an anecdote-based guide to being powerful. There's no need to reinvent the wheel! Lay down that same track.
Aside from some of the facts within the actual anecdotes—on which I don't trust he's done appropriate research since each of them are presented perfunctorily and exclusively to evince his successful-people habits (and not to interject any complications of reality)—there is little in this book you couldn't get from Dove chocolate wrappers. It's not bad advice, just banal. I would be shocked if Holiday, a so-called media manipulator, put his heart into this drivel. The pacing, tone, and almost computer-generated writing give the effect of a student trying to meet a page requirement the night before a due date. Here's a sampling:
No one is saying you can't take a minute to think, Dammit, this sucks. By all means, vent. Exhale. Take stock. Just don't take too long. Because you have to get back to work. Because each obstacle we overcome makes us stronger for the next one.
No. No excuses. No exceptions. No way around it: It's on you.This wouldn't be especially egregious if it weren't the whole book, but it is. That's it, folks. There's no point at which it transcends to advice that will move your life forward. Flip to any page; if it isn't an anecdote about how some famous person got famous by exhibiting a given virtue, it's just more of this run-on about how you have to find the way in which your obstacle is the way. There are no specifics about how exactly one is supposed to tackle "obstacles," which is a ludicrously broad concept, just droplets raining down from the Platonic form of Cant. Rather than actionable instructions, these platitudes are vast like the oceans. They run into each other, have no discernible borders, and are so huge as to be unwieldy, so unwieldy as to be pointless. The only real linkage here is the classical Stoic advice to maintain equanimity. This could have been conveyed in a much more powerful way. Like by the Stoics, for example. (He admits as much in the intro.)
The book revolves around dozens of small, unrelated and intellectually unlinked anecdotes. Seemingly anyone who's ever done something well is an example, contradictions be damned. The most hilarious thing is how poorly-rendered Holiday's history is. One can trace the thread of [Stoicism] from those days in the decline and fall of the Roman Empire to the creative outpouring of the Renaissance to the breakthroughs of the Enlightenment. It's seen starkly in the pioneer spirit of the American West, the perseverance of the Union cause during the Civil War, and in the bustle of the Industrial Revolution. It appeared again in the bravery of the leaders of the civil rights movement and stood tall in the prison camps of Vietnam. And today it surges in the DNA of the entrepreneurs of Silicon Valley. No word on whether the Native Americans just got out-stoic'd by the "pioneer spirit." The next time you'll read such a vacuous, half-lidded recitation of Western History, it'll be when your sixth-grader is preparing a report he didn't research enough. I have a feeling that's the case here.
It's vaguely insulting to be told that all obstacles are just a bunch of Oedipal Sphinxes. That's easy to say when your career began with a chance encounter with your favorite author, who announced that at that moment he was really looking for a research assistant to hire, and do you know anyone? Probably harder for the kids in sub-Saharan Africa to really leverage their malnutrition into a fierce and fulfilling career in PR. Fuck this book.
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Read information about the authorRyan Holiday is media strategist for notorious clients like Tucker Max and Dov Charney. After dropping out of college at 19 to apprentice under the strategist Robert Greene, he went on to advise many bestselling authors and multi-platinum musicians. He is the Director of Marketing at American Apparel, where his work in advertising was internationally known. His strategies are used as case studies by Twitter, YouTube, and Google, and have been written about in AdAge, the New York Times, Gawker, and Fast Company. He is the author is *Trust Me, I'm Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator*, which is due out in July. He currently lives in New Orleans, with his rebellious puppy, Hanno.
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