On Obstacles

The truth is, we need resistance. We need something to push back against. In fact, we thrive on it. As the legendary Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius wrote, "The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way."

Here are three reasons why obstacles can actually be a good thing:

When we face challenges head on, we force ourselves to find innovative solutions that we otherwise wouldn't have thought of. In fact, we often perform BETTER in the face of challenges. We rise to the occasion. And during this process, we also create value for others, even if it's just being a shining example of what's possible.

If you're unsure about what area of your life to focus on or what your next steps should be, start by identifying your biggest obstacle or disadvantage, then work on overcoming it. That's where you'll find the most excitement and satisfaction. When you have a clearly defined problem to deal with, as opposed to generalized anxiety or fear, the path you must take suddenly becomes much clearer.

Think of all the times you've reflected on seemingly unfortunate events months or years after the fact and realized they were actually blessings in disguise. Why wait to do this retrospectively? Realize now that the problem in front of you might actually be the best thing for you.

A personal note: It was my own struggle with understanding and remembering certain personal development principles that compelled me to translate these concepts into clear and simple language to improve my own learning. This habit eventually led to the creation of @thinkgrowprosper, which has brought me a great deal of joy and satisfaction.

—Ruben Chavez

5 Myths About Doing What You Love

We hear it all the time:

"Do what you love!"

"Follow your passion!"

Everyone from Confucius and Joseph Campbell to Steve Jobs and Richard Branson have been quoted as giving some form of this advice. Usually it’s in relation to how we make a living.

The problem is that we are seldom given concrete instructions for how to actually go about doing what we love.

As a result, this message often comes across as abstract, impractical, or worse, unachievable, leading many people to dismiss the advice and even go so far as to call it unintelligent or irresponsible.

This is due to some simple but crucial misunderstandings and misconceptions that have turned into full blown myths surrounding this topic. 

I want to clear up some of these myths now.

How I Accidentally Gained Over a Million Followers By Following My Excitement

In case you missed my previous blog post and recent Instagram posts, I’ve been talking about how to take action on the small things that excite you in order to discover the bigger things that will lead you to your “passion” or “purpose.”

I want to address a question that has come up in regards to this topic. It may be on your mind too:

“Acting on my excitement sounds great...but how does it translate into doing meaningful work that financially supports me?”

A lot of people think that when they follow their excitement, their lives will be perfect and they’ll never have to work or do anything they don’t like ever again.

But that's not really how it works.

It’s not that you won’t have to work hard when you follow your excitement or even that you won’t have to do things that you’re not absolutely thrilled about sometimes.

It’s that when you follow your excitement, the work you do will seem less like work and more like play.