Start seeing obstacles as not so bad, but simply as good.


A good book, the first one in the author’s trilogy, but probably the less mind opening. I doubt many readers will be surprised by the importance of obstacles on the road to success. What I found interesting, however, is the use of ancient philosophy, mainly Stoicism, to illustrate how persistence and ingenuity has always being keys to overcoming any obstacle – mental, physical, emotional.

As outlined by the author, this book is not a replacement for classic books on Stoicism, often quoted by the author. But you don’t need to read these books first, even if like me, I bet you will add more than one title on your reading list.

You will hear a lot about Seneca, Epictetus, Marcus Aurelius, key figures in ancient Rome, but also about people closer to us. Ryan Holiday did a lot of research in books, especially biographies, to share collective wisdom illustrated with true stories, a perfect mix between pragmatism and history.

I strongly recommend the whole trilogy, not just this book. There are many powerful insights in Stoicism, and Ryan Holiday is the best author to present old recipes from antics in a modern and engaged way.

About the author

Julien Sobczak works as software developer for Scaleway, a French cloud provider. As an avid reader, his main area of focus are developer productivity, mental literacy, and everything that resolves around personal development.

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