“Why can’t I be content leading a quiet life?” I hear myself ask, more accusing than enquiring in tone. But I knew the answer, a quiet life bores me, it doesn’t stimulate me and I would miss the buzz I get from achieving goals both big or small. I know all these reasons that keep me motivated on a good day. But when I have a bad day or week (like this week) I struggle to motivate myself and the resistance to challenge or change is immense.
It is in these times that I can see the mechanism of change at work because everything is slowed down and sometimes ceases to work. At these times I see that it takes vulnerability, courage and determination to keep pushing even when the changes you’re making are outside your comfort zone. Or should I say especially when the changes are outside your comfort zone as you would not feel challenged or vulnerable otherwise. So I have hit a block this week where the challenge seems greater than the reward. This is the most difficult situation to find yourself in when you looking for motivation, because the balance of the scales is tipped in the wrong direction. You find more reasons to keep yourself static than reasons to change and progress. Wanting to hide, avoid and resist any discomfort on these days is a perfectly human reaction, but it’s not the most progressive reaction. Facing this discomfort, vulnerability or for some even out right fear is what has to happen if you want to get beyond this static point.
How do I face it? I hear you ask. Well that just takes brutal honesty with yourself. If you know you’re avoiding something or if you’re in denial you need to give yourself space to be brutally honest with yourself. That could mean a few minutes writing to yourself, thinking to yourself or maybe talking to yourself (in the mirror works best but if you’re afraid of being carted off maybe just talking aloud to yourself when driving alone). In fact this blog is a product of that time given to myself to write about what is really going on? What am I avoiding?
The answer; I’m avoiding the discomfort of putting myself into a new environment of attending a coaching meeting with people that are much more experienced than me in their field, but yet I have to practice with and alongside them eek! The reasons not to go are pathetic, like “I don’t want to leave the comfort of the sofa and fire” and “Do I really need this experience in my life”. The reasons to go are powerful like “I’ll be better myself professionally and personally by experiencing this” and “I will learn yet again the importance of challenging yourself to reach beyond your comfort zone”.
Update; I went, I saw, I conquered. I conquered my resistance but the discomfort was still there even up to the point when I was leaving the meeting. But then I allowed myself in hindsight to see the benefits and I felt great. The meeting itself was hugely beneficial but what I gained from the most was knowing that I could resist my resistance. I have taken back the power from resistance and I was the one in control, not my fears, discomfort or vulnerability.
That’s the biggest lesson here and I’ve had to learn that lesson over and over again with each new level of discomfort or challenge I reach. Resistance is like a bully, if you standdown and do not challenge it it becomes a powerful force in your life that can impact your confidence, behaviour, esteem, thought processes… the list goes on. So resist resistance, stand up to it and you will reap the benefits of not only the challenge you complete but you benefit by proving you are more powerful than anything resistance can throw at you.