The Exploring Resistance + Creative Flow call is happening this Thursday! Dream Book members, get the call details here.
I started the resistance project in January.
A year of exploring, healing and making art with my resistance.
I dove in excitedly in January. I learned/remembered a whole bunch of things that work for me. I removed all games from my phone, I cut my screen time way down, I increased my daily step count, I firmed up my routines and structure/organizing.
And now, I still have all of these things in place that help nurture creative flow so I feel less resistance… and I have more creative flow... and yet sometimes I am still just RIGHT IN IT.
This came up on our New Moon call last week - how a lot of us feel like we’re overwhelmed and it’s just REALLY HARD to do the things we want to do.
I think it’s good to remember that there are external forces acting that ARE making it harder. The state of the world DOES impact our mental state.
Creative Dreaming is LIVING AS A VISIONARY and this is actually a big deal. It’s exhausting even in the best of times and these are not the best of times.
So it’s understandable that I have these days some days.
AND I really want to explore my resistance consistently this year so…
This morning my resistance shows up as:
Resistance to going for my morning walk to a coffee shop. My plan was to go to the “45 minute walk” coffee shop. But it is cold and windy, and after 2 weeks of un-heard of warm weather it means switching back into winter gear and maybe that’s too much today… so I bargained with myself… what about the 30 minute walk place? Or the 20 minute walk place, I mean we don’t like that place very much but 20 minutes feels so doable, right? Or… I mean there is a 1 minute walk coffee shop too... Can we do that?
Nope. The thought of getting dressed and going into the world was a big NO this morning. (Being self employed and the freedom it brings is one of my biggest dreams, and I recognize how lucky I am to be able to make this choice.)
But, even comfy at home in my PJs with my coffee and my cat Bear snuggled up in his bean bag chair beside my desk I have a lot of mental resistance today.
I feel HEAVY.
I also feel resistance to the resistance. Like WTF ANDREA? Just do the things that you DO want to do!
I look out the window. Maybe I will go out? Exercise and fresh air may be all I need?
On the other hand, maybe I need a break? A day off?
There is nothing urgent I need to do today BUT there is something I really do want to do. And that’s another thing we talked about on the New Moon call… how we can rally and get the stuff done that needs to happen. How none of us would just not show up for our clients. But then we end up not showing up for ourselves as well - that we don’t get to those projects that don’t have any external deadlines.
So I feel 50/50 - yes a day off would be nice AND totally justifiable. And yes a whole day to work on that project that I really do want to do feels really good.
My pre-pandemic self felt this way so rarely, that when I did feel this way I tended to take it as a sign that I needed a break, and take it.
But since 2020 I feel this way much more often, and I actually don’t want to take that many breaks. I want to move my projects forward.
OK! Good information!
I have resistance AND resistance to the resistance AND this inner knowing about what I actually DO want to do.
So what’s in my way?
(This is where I pop onto Facebook to see if there is anything interesting happening there)
No! Come back! We are journaling our way THROUGH this! Keep going!
What’s in my way?
I think about doing what I want to do, and I get a “brain swirl”.
What’s the brain swirl?
I sit with that a few minutes. It’s this tiny little part of me who is riding some kind of spacecraft that swirls around in my head, trying to create an energy stream that directs my thinking away from this project.
Wow, interesting! Why?
She wants to go get ice cream.
OK well that is SUPER interesting, because there is an ice cream shop near one of the places we could go to work this morning. But do you think this is literal - like part of you want to get ice cream? Or do you think it’s more like she wants to go play and not think about work?
I think she is BRAIN SWIRLING us right now and we can’t stay focused on what we are trying to process.
OK I think it’s obvious that if I stay home I’m just going to swirl around in my thoughts and not do this thing. AND I am resisting the plan I had made. So we need to come up with a new plan!
Oh I just realized what the problem is.
That project I want to work on today. It’s “starting something new” and “working on a thing that really matters to me” and both of those things bring up ALL THE THINGS.
The vulnerability of trying something new.
The fear that it won’t work out.
The doubt that I can really pull it off in the way I want to.
The “why bother? No one cares”
The worry that it will be too hard.
The worry that no one will understand what I am trying to do.
THE THINGS that come up for everyone with their dreams at some point. For me it happens mostly at the start, and then again right before it’s done.
Having named “the resistance” for what it is, and having worked through all of these fears/doubts so many times over the years (there is a whole library of inner work practices for this in Dream Book!) I just need to find the gentlest way to begin.
NAMING it really shifts it.
Instead of “some weird brain swirl that won’t let me focus” I know “this is hard and scary because it’s so vulnerable to start a new thing”.
And I know what helps with this:
Un-Sticking Station or other practices from the Library of Inner Work
Dream Self process to connect with the part of me who knows how to do this
Dream Lab process to connect with my enthusiasm for doing this
And now I feel ready to get started.
Making space to process all of our thoughts and feelings will naturally bring you to your truth. Your truth will include HOW MUCH you want to do the things you want to do - even when they are scary.
Dream Book members:
Come to the forum to share your thoughts or start a conversation about whatever you're working with.
Check out the calendar of upcoming calls. Make a plan to join us live or catch a replay.