Why do we resist healthy change? Why does resistance rear its stubborn head every time we decide to do something good for ourselves? It makes no sense!
Or does it?
The purpose of resistance is to protect you. It is a biological occurrence, it happens without your say once you have experienced trauma because it is your brain’s job to keep you safe. That’s one of its many skills. And the brains attempt to keep you safe involves minimizing change, because change comes with mystery, risk, and uncertainty. After a traumatic event, the brain comes up with a way to survive it. It comes up with an answer to why it happened. It comes up with a way to deal with the pain, which is usually by burying it when one is too young to deal with the complexity of it. The brain then makes you hyper aware of future situations that are similar to the previous one, to do anything to prevent it from happening again. And once that trauma, especially recurring trauma, has occurred, your brain believes that this is your new reality, that this is your life from now on because at least it has figured out how to deal with THIS particular scenario and it kept you alive.
Which makes the brain terrified, for good reason, of change, whether good or bad. Because change means another problem for the brain to solve that it might not be able to. It means another risky situation that it might not be able to help you survive. This is your basic biology at work. Your brain will do anything and everything it can think of to do what it thinks is necessary to protect the body and protect the mind from harm. The abuse became normalized because it was what you knew. You don’t know what happens with change so you reject the vulnerability that comes with it.
So now that you are an adult, safe and far away from your abusive past, you need to make changes in order to heal. But change involves stepping outside your comfort zone. And change is risky and risk can be dangerous. This is why any kind of change flips the switch that sends your brain into “Protection Mode.” The end result is resistance.
But I am here to tell you that you can bypass this initial instinct. You can dissolve that resistance!
The first step is to identify it. Resistance takes a variety of forms: foggy brain, discouragement, denial, overwhelm, panic attacks, anxiety, self-sabotage, depression, defensiveness, even making jokes to reduce severity. Everyone has their own way of doing it. But I promise you that it isn’t hard to spot. I’m sure you see it in people everyday. You might have even thought to yourself once or twice, “So and so can be so defensive.” If you can see it in others, you just have to turn your gaze inward to spot your own resistance tactics. It’s there, I promise.
The second step is to sit patiently with the resistance. Let it know you’re grateful for the way it has always kept you safe. Tell it you appreciate how it has never allowed you to deal with more than you can emotionally or psychologically handle. By doing this, you build trust. Now resistance can loosen its iron grip on your mind, emotions, and body. Only then will it reveal its message.
Remember, you are in control now. You have all the power over your life. And with this power, you get to dictate your life, you get to choose differently than the abuse chose for you. Change was always scary before because you had no way of knowing what was going to happen next and you had no say in the matter. But now, think of change as good, as necessary. See it as a positive, healthy expression of your regained power, your power of choice!
Ready to change? Are you stuck? Don’t worry. I can help! Just follow (this link) or call 619-889-6366 to reserve a one-hour coaching session with me ($125). Let me help you with the next step to heal your life. You deserve it! Reserve your spot NOW!
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