Author: M. Scott Peck
|The Road Less Traveled (1978) has served as a guide to self-growth. It encourages you to do better, take responsibility, and pay attention to your spiritual side but not in an ordinary way. The author bursts the bubble most of us have formed that life is fair and full of opportunities. Only after the reader has accepted this nature of life, does he hands the necessary tools they need in order to make their lives better.|
The book does an exemplary job at opening the reader’s mind to a variety of perspectives about life. It will teach you to become open and accept challenges rather than running away from them. The author describes life as ever-changing and hard. It is much possible that we are proven wrong many times in life and that is okay. What is not okay is remaining stagnant in one place and holding onto views that are not true or view that does not serve you. Through love, discipline delayed gratification and accepting suffering you can become a better human. Unlike other spiritual leaders, monks, and gurus M. Scott Peck does not paint life in rainbow colors and that is what keeps the reader stuck.
The Road Less Traveled Key Points
Welcome to Life, It sucks!
One of the key messages put forward by the author is that life is not great. You do not need to unnecessarily glorify life and try to bring out positivity in every situation. You should accept it with an open heart and mind that life is terrible and full of problems. The sooner you accept it the sooner you become capable of handling the odds that are thrown your way. Most people live life delusional that life is meant to hand out favors. It has to be full of comfort, opportunities, and rosy moments but the truth is that life is inherently hard. You will face disappointment every day. As you accept the true nature of life, you can move to the next step. That is preparing yourself to face the harshness and failures with the necessary tools.
Self-discipline is the First Thing You Need to Adapt
As we have established, life is hard. You cannot sit and wait for it to be fair. What you can do is take necessary measures that can lead you towards making your life liveable. These tools will sharpen your personality like a saw and you will be able to face any challenges. So, the first tool you should armor yourself with is self-discipline. Life cannot be lived with a: play now work later attitude. To earn your place in this world you need to put self-discipline over impulses. You need to prioritize the things that can make your journey here easier in the longer run.
Do Not Avoid Legitimate Suffering
Well, let’s be real we tend to run away from feelings so sadness, fear, and failure. It is human nature. We feel scared and vulnerable and try to distract ourselves from feeling such emotions but according to M. Scott Peck, this only delays the process of healing. If we do not face our emotions how can we heal from them? You think you will distract yourself and the emotions will go away but they never do. Just as stated by Sigmund Freud the emotions we refuse to feel never go away. They are buried alive and they come forth later in uglier ways. They take the shape of trauma and pain. So feel what is in front of you so that you can move on to the next stage which is healing. Do not let yourself become a garden where pain has stable roots.
If I give you ten tasks, out of which one is hard and time taking while the other nine are easier and will take an hour to finish you will pick those nine tasks up. Why? because we want to feel satisfied. We pick up easier tasks firsts because the sooner we finish doing them the sooner we will feel pleased and gratified. But the author’s advice is contrary. He tells his readers to attempt harder and time-taking tasks first so that they can feel satisfied after they have done everything.
Take Responsibility and Avoid Avoidance
“Something got inside me”, “It’s not my job”, “but why should I do it”. Do these statements sound familiar to you? Well, this is your average human making excuses, dodging responsibility, and blaming others like a pro. What we all ignore is the fact that growth cannot happen when we are not taking responsibility. When you do not think something is your responsibility how will you fix it? You will not. This is why to become better and grow into a higher being you need to analyze actions and see what are the areas of your life that you can improve by changing these things.
The Road Less Traveled Quotes
“Problems do not go away. They must be worked through or else they remain, forever a barrier to the growth and development of the spirit.” –M. Scott Peck
“Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.” –M. Scott Peck
The Road Less Traveled Review
As you turn each page, you realize that The Road Less Travelled offers a much more realistic vision of life than the average self-help books do. It does not give you unnecessary hope, false positivity, or paint a happy picture. It motivates you by being real, by showing you that only you can create goodness in your life and that too may not last long. As you adopt this perspective you become ready to face everything life throws at you.
To Whom I Would Recommend The Road Less Traveled
- To the eighteen-year-old college student who struggles to accept failures and miseries.
- The thirty-year-old woman who feels out of touch with herself and wants to refine her spiritual side.
- And to anyone who is looking for a self-help book that offers realistic advice.