What we resist persists.
Sit with that one for a while. We’re smack dab in the middle of a time of resistance.
Resistance to our confined situation.
Resistance to working remotely … or not at all.
Resistance to being our children’s teacher.
Resistance to (very unfortunate) financial struggles.
Resistance to whatever the future holds; or more aptly, resistance to not knowing what the future holds.
Resistance in this moment makes total sense! We’ve been dealt a tough hand. One that no one on this planet has faced before, so of course we’re digging in! It would be surprising if we weren’t resisting all that crap that’s been thrown our way. We’re genetically wired to fight or flee; and as a determined people, we want to beat (i.e. resist) this thing!
What would it look like in this moment NOT to resist?
What would it feel like to trust the process and concentrate more on the experience vs. the outcome?
What would your days look like if you were to observe more of what’s happening vs. be an active participant? That’s to say, remove yourself from being in the mix and position yourself to be an outsider looking in at your own life.
What would you learn about yourself? Your family? Your co-workers?
How might you use that information to support yourself and them in a different way?
There’s complete awareness that a good portion of those reading this article literally just said, “yeah ok.” And understandably so! If you’ve been struggling to make sense of this entire situation, the next immediate reaction is not “oh no big deal. It’s going to be fine. Let me just think differently.”
That’s not the intent. The intent is to start asking yourself these questions regularly. Try on a few different answers and see how they feel – mentally, emotionally, physically.
As leaders, our job is to make observations and present ideas to allow those around us to come up with solutions that work for them. If you’re living from a position of resistance, how is that being absorbed by those around you? Even if they’re nowhere near you and picking everything up via Zoom, Teams, phone, email.
Want to explore some quick and easy ways to alleviate conscious or unconscious resistance?
- Meditate / pray – better yet, do both! (If religion is your thing of course. If not, stick to meditation). There are 100s of apps and resources that you can sign up for and within minutes you’re practicing meditation.
- Exercise – physical demands shift focus from mental resistance to physical resistance. Whether you lift weights, run/walk/bike, or some combination of it all, your mind will focus on the amount of effort it takes your body to resist all of that; thus giving it a break. And because so many good chemicals are released during a workout, your brain will feel much lighter by the end. Haven’t yet established a routine or exercising hasn’t been a huge part of your life before now? No worries – we’re all beginners. Start with a 10-15 minute walk. Add 2-3 minutes every 2-3 days. By the end of the month, you’ll be up to 30-45 minutes!
- Connect with a neutral 3rd party – mentors and peers are phenomenal resources! They are great sounding boards to bounce ideas off of and to get your creative juices flowing. Professional coaches are a great resource as well. They are truly unbiased (because they don’t know a lot of your story – talk about a great blank slate to dive in with) and are professionally trained to root through (conscious or unconscious) mental and emotional resistance. Search any coach here on LinkedIn. You’ll find that most of them, myself included, have opened up their calendars for things like breakthrough sessions (i.e. 1 time sessions completely free or at a reduced rate) or group experiences to optimize pricing/individual.
Leadership can feel fairly lonely at times, particularly in rough times where you’re being sought after for answers and directions – some of which you may not even know yourself. It’s completely normal to feel resistant in these moments. Remember, you’re complete, resourceful, powerful, and unequivocally unlimited. Root through your resistance in order to set your mind, soul, and body free and to maximize your greatness and potential as well as those around you.
Stay safe. Be well.