If you’re chasing some big goals then you probably need no introduction to the experience of resistance! Yes, it seems to come up loud and clear the moment we commit to a big goal. Suddenly we’re looking up the cliff face above us thinking… oh man, this is huge!
But resistance is also a bit sneaky in that it pops up in much smaller things in everyday life.Have you ever woken up in the morning with a horrible feeling of the day that lays ahead of you?
You know you have a wonderful life and are generally a positive person. But still, there are days when you feel that“urgh” feeling. You might start to wonder… What am I doing wrong? Why do I feel so bad?
You’re not doing anything wrong. There is no problem. I know, from the way you feel, you assume there is a problem, but trust me, more often than not, there is no real problem.
This is resistance at work! Let me explain…
Resistance is our mind creating a problem with either:
- the way things actually are(your current circumstances or a situation) OR
- your experience of an emotion(usually the ones we call negative)
As you know, our brains are wired for survival and can be hypervigilant. We need to manage our minds or they will manage us! With resistance it’s all about just understanding what is really going on!
Your brain is creating a problem about the way things are.For example:Situation: You have back to back meetings all dayThoughts:“It’s going to be exhausting”,“This is ridiculous, I can’t get my work done with so many meetings”These thoughts are creating a problem where there wasn’t one. Meetings all day- fact. Notice that the situation is not good or bad until the thoughts about the meetings kicks in. There is a judgement of good/bad. Our thinking creates the problem, the resistance to reality. Once that happens, we cannot accept how things are. They are perceived as “bad”or “wrong”. As a result, we spend most of the day resisting the situation because “it shouldn’t be this way”.
The other thing resistance does is push back against an emotion. Usually an emotion that doesn’t feel comfortable. Instead of allowing the emotion, we try to avoid it or cover it. As we were never really taught how to manage our emotions, it’s no wonder we we actually just try and avoid the ones we don’t like the feel of! But, I digress…
The only trouble with resisting an emotion is that it actually strengthens it! So, you will start to feel even more uncomfortable. I think we resist our emotions because on some level we think that something is wrong when we are feeling bad. We equate feeling bad with something being wrong.
But, if we allow it, it passes after a time.
Resistance is a natural part of the human experience, so you’re not alone. But to better manage your mind and move towards dissolving resistance, here’s something to try:When you feel that sense of resistance creeping in, ask yourself: What problem might I be creating here? What emotion might I be experiencing?
Stopping to ask those questions is enough to loosen the grip of the resistance and move towards awareness. And being aware of what’s really going on is enough to create a significant shift for yourself, believe me!