I get it. We’ve all doubted ourselves from time to time. It is part of being human. We all experience resistance every day when we’re trying to do something that matters. Whether you want to sit and meditate, work on a new project, get out and exercise, whatever it is that is in the direction of growth, resistance comes alive. So the question becomes, “How do I overcome this resistance?”
The truth is that resistance is relentless, it’s a deeply ingrained wiring that we all have to move away from. In hypnosis, I worked with hundreds of clients to “retrain” the way they thought – the brain anticipates resistance (this is comfortable) so it attempts to move away from the uncomfortable. Not only is this hardwired into most of us, but we’ve practiced is so often that it’s strengthened the default. The brain has such a lock on us, that we’re not even aware of it. This is why procrastination is so common.
Here are a few tips and tricks to shift your thinking from “I can’t” to “Who says I can’t?”
K.N.O.W Your Resistance
1 Know resistance is inevitable and relentless — it’s not personal. Take your thoughts seriously, not personally.
2 Notice the thoughts in your day as a way of disengaging from it. The moment you’re aware of it, change the thought! By practicing mindfulness, you’re creating a little space between yourself and the resistance.
3 Open to the experience of it, how does it feel in your body? Get intimate with it so you can recognize the sensations of it, the thoughts surrounding it and behaviors it defaults you to that lead you away from your intention. For example, when you begin to doubt yourself, do you avoid? Do you procrastinate? Do you busy yourself? Pay attention to your behaviors so you can shift them if they do not serve you.
4 Whack it! This may seem very unmindful, but it can be kind of fun to think about it this way. We have to remember that mindfulness is awareness and opens us up to discerning what is best for us in the moment. If whacking it is too strong of a term for you (because it implies harming), you might prefer Welcome it and let it go as a more compassionate response.
Play with these three steps in whatever you notice yourself resistant toward. Remember, you’re not alone. Every human being has resistance, even the most talented people you can think of sense it prior to getting up and performing.