Categories: Gettin The Mind Right

3 Tips to Make Your Obstacle the Way

Happy Monday!

I recently completed “The Obstacle Is The Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph“ by Ryan Holiday.  I found it so compelling that it has become one of the top five books I’ve ever read.

In studying my notes after, I compiled a list of what I think are the best gems from his masterful book and I wanted to share that list along with my own insights to help you along your journey.


  1. Stop seeing problems as problems:

    One question to ask yourself here is – are you being blindly led by your primal thoughts?

    Our mind is a brilliant operating system but unlike most operating systems, it doesn’t get a software reboot every few months. Its been thousands of years and to some extent our reactive minds are outdated in that with the change of our environment through the evolution of technology, our minds are unable to tell the difference between real danger and annoyance. And so, our built in filters of fear and anxiety which once protected us from life or death, now cause constant craziness in our own minds.

    Shakespeare said: There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.

    Quick Takeaways:

    • Be objective (not emotional)
    • Remember that we tell our minds stories of what things mean and as quickly as you don’t like a TV show/movie, you can stop watching it immediately by putting on something new.
    • Ask yourself – when you worry, what are you choosing not to see right now?



  1. Spend no time thinking about how things should be or how we prefer them to be:

    I use to think the movie the Matrix was super weird. But more and more I’m starting to believe that our daily existence–what we see–is more of a game/perception than a reality. As you would play a video game, you can only control your player – not the computer itself. Same as in life.


Quick Takeaways:

  • Discard distracting thoughts, focus on what is in front of you right now.
  • Failure shows us the way by showing us what not to do. When you “fail,” ask yourself:
    • What went wrong here?
    • What am I missing?
    • How can I improve?
  • The process is about finishing the smallest task you have right in front of you and doing it well.



  1. Defeat emotions with logic by asking questions:

Recently I’ve been getting the itch to write another book. In a conversation about writing books, someone asked me – how the heck do you even go about that? It’s a good question because a book is no easy task. But what I if, I told him, you pick the 8-12 best – most important topics, those would be your chapters, then wrote one chapter a week and one page a day. It’s not all that crazy when you ask the right questions and break it down.


Quick Takeaways:

  • Nothing is all that scary when you break it apart and look at it from different angles.
  • Ask yourself, if you think more about the obstacle/fear than your goal, which do you think will be more likely to manifest?
  • Emotions and obstacles will always be there, we can choose to fight them (i.e let them run rampet through our minds) OR use them to our advantage by asking simple questions, breaking down the obstacle into smaller chunks, taking small bits of action, and bettering ourselves through the process.


Ryab Holiday ends the book with this quote:

“See things for what they are.
Do what we can.
Endure and bear what we must.
What blocked the path now is a path.
What once impeded action advances action.
The Obstacle is the Way.”


I’ve been reading a variety of self development and business books since high school–albeit slowly as I’m a slow reader (probably would have been diagnosed dyslexic had I gone through elementary school these days)–but the one common thread among hundreds of books is that what creates success & happiness is no secret or complex formula. It’s a matter of controlling your mind and applying the basic principles.


I suggest that you write out the one tip that resonates the most with you, then put it into action.


By the way, the book that I want to write is a collection of the top 365 Monday Motivational articles (what you’re reading now) that I’ve written over the past six plus years. Each page would summarize the main point of each post, so that throughout the year, you would read one page each morning to provide inspiration and help keep your mind right!


Would YOU be interested in a daily motivational book? Respond back or let me know on social media or in person!






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2 responses to “3 Tips to Make Your Obstacle the Way — Monday Motivation

  1. You could also make it into a daily calendar! One day at a time…one motivation at a time…the next day you peel off the day before and have a new day with a new motivation tip!

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