Resistance to change is natural . it is part of a protective mechanism to keep us safe. However, as we all know, it can be a very real and difficult adversary when it comes to change, healing and transformation. So, we need information and tools that will help us to be able to step aside from and move forward on our chosen path.
Resistance: Three Facts that are Good to Know!
Positive feedback is often not enough to maintain new behavior
Old habits are hard to break and resistance to change is natural
Approaches that use principles of neuroplasticity* turbo charge your conscious efforts
1. Make your decisions conscious. If you choose not to do what you know is “best”, what you promised, or planned to do, acknowledge you are making that choice. Decide when you will return to the contract you have made with yourself. This reduces unproductive guilt and enables you to take responsibility for your decision.
This avoids adding to energy blockages that are already present and opens a door for you to step into your power.
2. Question your excuses. Examine the reasons you are giving yourself for not actively participating in the process of healthy change. There is probably an element of truth in your reasons. Be aware that you are still making “a choice.” You are not a passive victim of circumstances. Excuses are often based on somewhat faulty premises, e.g., “I am indispensable”, “I have too much to do”, or “There’s no time for me”, “I don’t deserve to have this time/goal”.
Questioning our excuses (with gentle compassion!) provides greater self knowledge and can lead to a more conscious compassion with and for ourselves that energizes us and adds to a firmer foundation for when we are ready to move forward with change.
3. Incorporate one change at a time. Too much too soon is ineffective leading to ‘burn out’ or failure.
Kindness with ourselves is always a strong ally to have on our journey through life.Embracing it may be one of the best side benefits of a healing or transformative process!
4. Stress management results in increased energy. Allow yourself to enjoy it; set aside time for relaxation, healing & creating a more balanced lifestyle.
It may take some convincing of your inner critic but once you experience the benefits of effective stress management it will become self re-enforcing.
5. Work through difficulties by adapting techniques rather than giving up.
This builds self-esteem and feelings of personal effectiveness as you attune to your personal needs.
6. If symptoms persist, check for “secondary gain”:
Do my symptoms serve you in some way? If so, then how?
It can be helpful to imagine you are observing someone else behave as you do—what would you imagine their reasons for doing so be?
Keep a log: time, place, circumstances when your symptoms/negative behaviors occur.
Symptoms may be a signal that some feelings are being blocked and need attention.
Understanding secondary gain can lead us to very real needs that we need to address.
Common secondary gains:
Avoidance of unpleasant situations or unpleasant feelings
A means of getting care, attention, help or support
A way of identifying with an important person in your life
An unconscious way of feeling like you are important/matter/have value
How else could you get these needs met?
Focusing on healing and/or working with change holds tremendous power. It may not be easy, but time, patience, and persistence will ultimately bring rewards.
*Neuroplasticity: The ability of the brain and nervous system to change itself
Implementing inner technologies like imagery, mindfulness, relaxation and meditation use this natural ability to help you make changes and create a new experience of life and living. In effect they can undo your previous unconscious learning experiences that color your perception and abilities negatively.