Be an Obstacle Champion

Mountain climber

With the beautiful gift of time bestowed upon us, I’ve taken it upon myself to do the one thing that’s always managed to escape me: READ BOOKS!

One that I’ve been particularly eager to get my hands on is the beloved Ryan Holiday’s The Obstacle is the Way. Sounds like the perfect read for our challenging times these days, doesn’t it?

For those who don’t know, Ryan Holiday is an ex-retail marketing director turned stoicism enthusiast. He’s the author of several bestselling books on topics including media, marketing, and stoic philosophy. He travels across the country giving talks and writes for news outlets as famous as The New York Times. He’s a marketing analyst. And he’s a dad. For being just over the age of thirty, the guy’s accomplished a lot!

His genius shows plainly in the practical manual that is The Obstacle. Picking up his book during the pandemic has fed me motivation to keep trudging down this long and unfamiliar road.

The tenacity to stick through this? It’s the same mindset you, students, will need for your job search.

So, for now and for later, take hold of these key principles from Holiday’s book to help you through:

  1. Change your perception
    How we see and understand what happens to us, and how we interpret those events, is how we experience life. The key is to see how everything that happens to you can be an advantage. View challenges not as “This is bad,” but as “This is opportunity. What can I learn? What can I gain from this to make me stronger?”
  2. Commit to action
    Learning to do the right things at the right time is an ongoing process. But the goal is to always be moving forward. When in doubt, take the next small step. Focus on one thing at a time. Don’t quit. Do your best. This is how we reach our goals.
  3. Be disciplined; use your will
    Do the things you don’t want to do so as to be prepared for the unexpected, as the unexpected always happens. When things get tough, stay the course. Even if you’re on your last legs. Lasso whatever effort you can and persevere. You’ll get there!


Sources: The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday; “The Daily Stoic” by Ryan Holiday

By Samantha Karpiloff
Samantha Karpiloff Assistant Director Samantha Karpiloff