Resistance is a natural part of making changes. If this is a season of change for you, you probably already know that whenever we set our sights on accomplishing something new, resistance will make an appearance.
Sometimes resistance comes from inside. The internal voice that tells us why something can’t be done. “You’re too old. It’s too hard. You don’t have what it takes. You don’t want it badly enough. It’s too late. You’re too tired.” (All lies!)
Other times, resistance comes from outside. Media messages blasting us with continuous content that tries to convince us we’ve got to keep struggling to measure up. While, at the same time, subtly telling us why it will never happen. (Picture the internet as a lady grasping her pearls while shaking her head and saying, “Bless your heart” through a thin smile.)
Resistance can also come from our tribes. Folks who love and care deeply about our happiness but are fearful that we’ll fail or get hurt. They might say things like, “You’re working too hard. Why don’t you take a break from this dream and give yourself some time to think?” While everything they say may carry grains of truth, we’ve got to handle this form of resistance the same way we handle all resistance.
Notice resistance in its many forms.
- The feeling you have when you wake up in the morning that makes you want to stay in bed rather than get to the gym.
- The thoughts you have that say, “Look at Jane, she didn’t have to work this hard to get what she wants. Maybe I don’t either.”
- The days when everything goes haywire, and nothing on your to-do list gets accomplished.
- The well-timed remark from a friend or family member who asks if you’re still trying to “figure out your life” or make the big life changes you’ve announced to the world.
Use resistance to sharpen your focus and determination.
Here’s a simple example of how you can turn resistance into a helpful tool:
If resistance tells you to stay in bed in the morning instead of getting up to exercise or get a jump on your day, notice it and acknowledge that it does feel pretty darn good under the covers. Then say out loud: “But what I want is to get healthy and strong. What I want is to plan out my day. I know those things don’t come easily. Thanks for the reminder Resistance that I’m stronger than my feelings.”
Voila! You’ve turned resistance into a reminder of the goals you want to accomplish. (Like a giant pointing finger or a huge spotlight.) And being reminded of goals is never a bad thing! Instead of derailing your goals, resistance becomes a tool you can use to help you accomplish them.
So the next time resistance shows up to challenge the changes you want to make in your life, say, “Hey! Thanks for the reminder!” Then get going again on making those changes a reality.