What do you do when you encounter resistance? And by resistance I don’t only mean fear, though this is the most common way it shows up. But I’m talking more about the more subtle ways it appears: victim posturing, pessimism, resentment, judgment, control, dependency- you know, the not so fun stuff. The human psyche is very clever and designs all sorts of ways to protect us from the truth—from ourselves. We are, at times, incapable of fully inhabiting our circumstances. We wiggle and squirm and try to find a way out.
Whenever I’m having a hard time accepting some basic fact about my life or find myself unable to move forward, I know resistance is to blame. And boy do I love to resist this! I act as though everything is fine– it’s stress.. my environment..the lunar cycle. And sure, these play a role. But my real resistance is always about something more. It runs deeper. I’ve come to learn that resistance is about not loving myself enough.
Here’s how I see it: we’re all already perfect.
Flawed and fabulous.
So why should anything that happens to us be any different?
Our lives are extensions of who we are: our circumstances are nothing more than our beliefs about ourselves personified. It’s no accident that people with higher self-worth have higher salaries, better relationships, and longer life spans. Feeling good translates to living good.
And yet we’re often so quick to judge ourselves- to call things shitty or say “this isn’t how this was supposed to happen.”
Part of my faith includes the knowledge that everything (and I mean everything) that happens to me is in my best interest. This doesn’t mean I will enjoy the experience, but it will be beneficial (and in fact essential) to my soul’s growth. Until we learn the lesson, it keeps showing up, in many forms, over many lifetimes.
This means there’s no way to not be on the right path. There are no mistakes and everything happening right now is divinely inspired.
Even if your beliefs differ from mine, I think we can all agree: everything happens for a reason, however unclear or crazy that reason may seem. And so we struggle to accept our life circumstances in much the same way we struggle to accept ourselves.
I’ve mentioned many times on this blog the importance of self love but what about the less talked about love of life?
Can you extend that same radical acceptance and appreciation you have for yourself to your current life situation—the job and bank account and family drama—all of it? Instead of resisting the lesson in whatever form it shows up (a breakup or argument or illness), ask yourself what you have to learn.
What parts of your past are veering dangerously into your present? What old pains are being activated? Where do you feel broken and defeated? Where can you extend compassion and forgiveness?
Don’t attach yourself to the answers, just ask the questions and see what comes up.
Tend to those places. Give your resistance your love.
We all go through painful times. Don’t compound the pain by judging the crap out of yourself on top of it. You are not here to be perfect. You are here to squeeze as much joy, laughter and love out of every stinking day that you can. I bet you’ll learn a little along the way too.