In preparing to write this blog, I spent hours and days researching why people were resistant to doing things that were “good” for them. Even resistant when they wanted to do it, yet still found themselves avoiding or resisting the activity. As I shared in my last blog, for me it is Exercise. I hate it. Oops, that just slipped out. Didn’t even realize that I had typed it. How’s that for being mindful? But, that just shows how resistant I am to it. Now mind you, I get how much my aging body and mind need it and I even daydream about doing it and how great I will feel after and yet I find one excuse after the other to avoid it. The resistance is real. I wanted to write this blog to help myself as much as you. Hence, the research. I found lots of fancy ideas and reasons as to why people have resistance, such as:
-Resistance builds up your own expectations around your performance. You want to be perfect and fear that you will not be. You fear your own self judgement by looking or feeling silly.
-Your safety is threatened because you might feel vulnerable or uncomfortable or awkward. Our instincts are always to keep ourselves safe from vulnerability and societal judgements.
-We resist things that are crucial to our self development because it is scary and sometimes uncomfortable to grow and change.What if you change but your partner doesn’t? What will happen to the relationship? Will you still be accepted if you go vegan in your meat loving family? You don’t want to disappoint someone by changing.
-It’s not in your silent “contract” with someone. You don’t want to change the rules or rock the boat
-You fear or believe that you will lose something of equal value along the way.
-Resistance is often fueled by fear of the uncontrollable. If we can’t control the outcome then we don’t want to try it. Not worth the uncertainty.
-Bold action is hard.
-Your cozy, comfortable little comfort zone is cozy and comfortable.
-The mind perceives change as threatening.
-You became stressed and overwhelmed by the wide gap between where you are now and where you want to be. All the work that will go into getting there is daunting, unpleasant and just exhausting.
-You lack confidence that you can really achieve the goal.
-It’s just too damn hard, time consuming and overwhelming. (my second personal favorite)
-I’ll deal with it tomorrow. (My personal favorite)
So now that you have picked your reasons…
Yeah, me too
So, I did what I always do when I am stumped and confused and lost
I meditated on it
And, here is what I heard in my inner silence:
-You think too damn much
-You feel too damn much
-You are too damned attuned to your deepest feelings and beliefs
-You are too “good” to yourself
-You let yourself off the hook too damn much
(my inner voice has a potty mouth)
-You are “buying” into your inner thoughts and feelings too much and are trying to be too nice to yourself
-You have decided that all these little thoughts and feelings and resistances are ACTUALLY the truth
-Why and When did you establish that the feeling of “I don’t want to” is your truth?
-Why am you defining and making decisions about yout life based on a feeling, when you know full well that feelings are fickle, fleeting little things that buzz about you all day? What about the feeling of pride and accomplishment and health that you will feel when you go for it?
Through Meditation and Mindfulness Practice you can create a space between you and your feelings or thoughts. In that Space I know that if I just let go of the limiting “thought” or “feeling” about the activity and think only of the action itself, then that becomes my truth in that moment. Instead of sitting on my coach thinking of exercising and feeling all my feelings about it, shift my thoughts to the action needing to be taken. Not my thoughts or feelings about the action, just focus on the action itself. Getting up. Putting one foot in front of the other and walking to my room. Getting dressed. Walking out the door. At that point it is too late to back out. I am dressed. I am outside. Damn, it’s hot.