Our resistance to ‘what is’ is what keeps us trapped in the never-ending cycle of our pain body and can create suffering. Recognising and overcoming resistance is key.
Resistance is the reason that we keep re-living and going over our old restrictive behaviour and patterns. Resistance is when we don’t want something to be as it is. We want the situation or outcome to be different to the one we are experiencing. So we physically and or mentally create resistance within our body and mind.
Resistance is what keeps us stuck and unavailable to growth.
Resistance is fear. Fear of the future. Fear of change. Fear of the unknown. Our resistance to something or a situation can also be created by past experience. As we only have the knowledge from our past to guide us in the present.
So what does resistance look and feel like?
Resistance can present itself often and in many forms – anxiety, apprehension, insecurity, self doubt, powerlessness, tension, illness, headaches, stomach aches, overwhelm, holding your breath, loss of control and stress. You may have experienced some or all of these and other symptoms that I haven’t mentioned at some stage as a result of resistance.
The first step in changing your relationship with resistance is to observe your reaction to situations or comments throughout your day. When your body and mind don’t like the way something is panning out, you will feel the reaction, resistance. It’s your mind and body’s response to not wanting a situation to be how it is. Being the witness and observing your own behaviour leads you to the next step of acknowledgement.
The second step is then to acknowledge and allow what you are feeling and where you feel it within your body. When you feel the urge to resist want is happening in that moment, use your breath to steady any emotion arising. It is only through acknowledging our resistance that we are able to transform it through acceptance and grow.
The third step is acceptance. You know how the saying goes, ‘accept the things you cannot change.’ We have no control over the past, only our reaction to it. We bring our fears from the past into our present and then project them onto our future experiences. Acceptance to ‘what is,’ releases you from the grasp of resistance so you can move to the next step, surrender. This doesn’t mean that what happened in the past was okay. We are not here to judge, but merely to release ourselves from the blockages that stop us moving forward to a happier and more peaceful present.
The fourth step is surrender. Once you have observed, acknowledged and accepted ‘what is’ you can then surrender the situation and feelings to the Universe/God/Spirit. The act of surrender will free up the body and mind, to allow new ideas, solutions and a way of being to emerge.
Of course resistance comes in all shapes and sizes.
If it’s a relatively small issue you are dealing with like being held up at the traffic lights. Try focusing on the flow of your breath, you can let go of the feeling of tension and surrender to the moment. Acknowledging the situation can allow a solution to arise for next time. This may be as simple as allowing yourself more time for the journey.
For more complex issues and trauma, try sharing your fears with a trusted friend, relative or professional. Journaling, yoga and meditation are tools that you can utilise daily. Through our practice, over time we learn to go with the flow, recognising resistance the moment it arises through using our breath.
We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t resist some aspects of our lives.
But if we seek more peace, contentment and happiness, then learning to recognise and release our resistance is key. A relatively quick and simple method to releasing resistance is to tune into your breath. It will help to bring your awareness back to the present moment, guiding the body and mind to let go and surrender.
Once we become aware of our habits we have the power to change the way we react and do things. When we let go of our expectations of how we think things should be, we can rest in the possibility of how things could be.
So whether it’s in your daily life or on the yoga mat, learn to be the witness. Observe, acknowledge, accept and surrender your resistance to ‘what is’ and open yourself up to explore a world of possibilities.
Namaste beautiful Soul xo
Disclaimer: The information above is the view of the writer. Always seek the advice of a professional when needed.