Dealing with resistance
If you haven’t yet felt resistance in this program, I guarantee that you will. To deal with it, we first need to know what type of resistance you’re experiencing.
If resistance feels “meh” — like a sense of boredom — the prompt may simply not be relevant to you. In this case you’ve got a few options:
- Do it anyway. You just may be surprised by what surfaces!
- Use this time to revisit a previous prompt and push it further
- Visit this site for prompt ideas
- Or simply free-write.
If you’re having a hard time recalling distant memories, I’d encourage you to simply do the prompt. It’s incredibly beneficial to re-integrate our past selves into a complete identity, and sometimes it takes weeks or months to remember who we used to be.
But if your resistance feels more like a wall… like a stubborn donkey digging in its heels… we’re going to hit pay dirt.
We’re diving deep in this program…. deep into memories and emotions that aren’t always comfortable. Sometimes it can be downright scary.
The resistance you feel is our natural instinct to protect ourselves from emotional pain. But these emotions need to surface and be set free so that we can move forward in our lives. I’ll be publishing a video on this topic within the next couple days.
Change isn’t linear
What I know from decades of personal experience is that change isn’t linear; we don’t simply march from point A to point B.
We didn’t get stuck overnight and we won’t get unstuck overnight either. This process requires patience, curiosity, and self-compassion.
I’ve designed this program with these facts in mind.
- We’re focusing on joy first. We need to equip ourselves with positive emotions before we tackle the uncomfortable stuff.
- We’ll meander around topics. We won’t stay in any one topic or time period for long… yet we’ll revisit the same topics over and over.
But inevitably, a prompt or a memory is going to hit a nerve. Here’s how to handle it.
Dealing with emotional resistance – Level 1
So you’re looking at a journal prompt thinking, “No way. I don’t want to do that.” Perhaps you feel tension, or a tightness in your gut. Now what?
- Congratulate yourself! You’ve identified a barrier that is keeping you stuck in your old life.
- Pull out your journal anyway, and title the entry “resistance.”
- Write what you’re feeling resistant about; do you know where it’s coming from? If so, get that down on paper.
- Close your eyes. Like a curious scientist, gently explore: What does your resistance feel like? Where do you feel it in your body? Breathe into that place.
- Now open your eyes and write about it. Describe your experience of resistance.
At this level, we won’t go any further. It’s enough to simply acknowledge the resistance instead of pushing it away. If the next few prompts in the series trigger the same resistance, repeat the process. Or, if it’s uncomfortable or tedious, use the alternative journal suggestions at the top of this page until the prompt focus changes.
Do you need to talk?
Beta members get one free 30-minute session with me. If you are running into emotional challenges, resistance, or simply have questions about how journaling can help your specific situation, click the button to schedule a call.