Resistance: the battle before the breakthrough

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Creative success coach, Photographer, rescue dog mom, book worm, INFJ, Enneagram 3, doing my best to be mindful, kind & help people be their most authentic, purposeful selves.


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14 surprising ways resistance might be showing up in your life and what’s its appearance means

Excited about a new project? Ready to go for something new? Embarking on a bold move? Thinking about what you want to change, achieve or do is the easy bit. Ideas might flow, you spend hours researching and you might even start to see some progress, but the closer your proximity to your goal, the slower your progress becomes.

Does this sound familiar?

This my friends is called resistance and its appearance is a really good indicator that you’re about to change your life for the better, but, the resistance is going to do everything it can to stop you from crossing the finishing line. The real kicker is that the more making something happen matters to you, the more you’ll resist taking the action to bring it to life.

“Resistance arises from within. It is self-generated and self-perpetuated. Resistance is the enemy within.” – Steven Pressfield

Here are a few ways it might show up for you:

  • Procrastination; mindless scrolling, TV show binges, mindless admin etc
  • Stopping to make yet another cup of tea when you’re about to complete a task
  • Comfort eating and snacking to avoid doing the thing you need to do
  • Self-medicating with alcohol or prescription meds
  • Anxiety and feeling deeply unsettled for no apparent reason
  • Depression and apathy that leads to inaction
  • Drama in your personal relationships (you might cause it or it might erupt unexpectedly just as you’re about to have a win)
  • Unexpected problems that take your attention away from the task at hand
  • Criticism of and comparison of yourself with others
  • Imposter syndrome
  • Fear of failure that stops you in your tracks
  • Starting fights with your partner
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Physical symptoms like headaches or fatigue

Resistance’s job is to keep you stuck and it’s a nasty form of self-sabotage. When resistance runs the show, it keeps you stuck firmly in your comfort zone where it’s safe, you know the drill and you can’t be caught off guard by anything you don’t know how to handle.

It’s damned annoying, but it’s a sign that you’re close to a breakthrough.

If you want bigger things from your life, if you want to feel more alive, more on purpose and more fulfilled, you have to stage a coup and take back control of your life when resistance shows up.

Here’s how:

  • Set yourself a very clear goal with a powerful ‘why’. Write it down, clearly define it, give it a time limit and make it doable within the context of your life, whilst still making it big enough to scare you slightly. Create a vision board about it, stick it on a post-it, visualise it and make sure you’re really excited about it.
  • List out the steps you’ll have to take to achieve your goal. Resistance hates clarity. Map out the route and start walking. 
  • Be disciplined about taking daily action. When you’re working on something new, there’s going to be a time frame when you’re taking loads of action but seeing no results, keep taking action anyway. Life up-levels require patience and persistence by the bucket load. 
  • Don’t ignore the feelings that resistance brings up, work with them. Negative and difficult emotions are sign posts that there’s something to work on. 
  • Feel the fear and take action anyway.

If you can approach it with some compassion (despite the fact that you really want to drop kick it over the nearest wall), resistance is doing its best to keep you safe. Its appearance is also an opportunity to do some inner work; resistance is often symptomatic of your unconscious beliefs around success. Start to dig into these and you’ll start to take back some control. 

Achieving the big goals that make for a life that’s more interesting, exciting and fulfilling means literally breaking through your limits. Resistance is a sure sign you’re close. GO FOR IT!

Of course, this isn’t a journey you have to travel alone. I’m here to help you get where you want to go faster and with less overwhelm. To find out more about how coaching will help you, please book a complimentary strategy call with me here.

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Your confidence boosting strategy coach.

I'm a coach, creative, mentor & photographer with over 18 years of experience as a successful entrepreneur.

My superpowers are intuition & strategy; a powerful combo that's a bit like rocket fuel for creating the life & business you really want.

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