Setting yourself up for success!

Have you ever been in a situation you didn’t want to be in, where you knew what needed to be done to get out of it but for some reason you just did’t take those steps? You felt a load of resistance coming up against taking the actions you knew would work and instead you looked for other ways to deal with it…What’s that about?! On paper it seems counterintuitive right? But in reality it happens A LOT.

I was recently having a conversation with a friend where he was doing just that. It was interesting to me because I can definitely remember times where I’ve done it too. I’ve initially resisted the paths that I would end up taking, because they felt either too hard or too easy. Yes, you read that right, too easy and it would seem that I am not the only one who does this. 

When something feels too hard, the resistance is obvious. When something feels too easy, we tend to think that it wont work. It’s too simple and it makes us suspicious so we don’t value it. We think if the solution really was that simple then no one would ever suffer with the problem in the first place. The thing is though, that while something may appear simple on paper, putting it into practice and forming it into a habit isn’t necessarily that easy. It takes consistent practice to make it stick and have the desired effect. 

Consequently we end up in a state of limbo and looking for alternative solutions. This can add to the stress we’re feeling because while we’re looking for these solutions we’re not actually taking action on the problem. This is just a way of distracting ourselves from dealing with the real issue, we procrastinate. The reason we do this is largely subconscious and a way of keeping us in a weird version of our comfort zone. (Look, I don’t make the rules. No one ever said that all comfort zones were actually comfortable.) This is often the case when there’s a pattern of behaviour that’s been there for a long time. We’re so used to it that making a change is a really big deal.

I like to think of this resistance as growing pains. You wouldn’t get the resistance if you weren’t trying to change something, and changing a pattern of behaviour that doesn’t serve you anymore is a good thing. If you’re feeling fear or resistance it can mean that you’re onto something amazing, so keep going. *Disclaimer, use your judgement here. If you’re feeling fear or resistance about doing something actually dangerous like, giving a Bear a high-five, (not sure why that was the first example that came to me…) then maybe don’t do it.*  

The best way to keep going and to set yourself up for success is to start off by being kind to yourself. Beating yourself up about the problem or the fact that you aren’t a supremely enlightened being yet is not gonna get you anywhere. Give your self a break and celebrate your self-awareness. 

Next, focus on the baby steps. Loads of small actions taken consistently add up to a huge overall shift. If you keep looking at the end result you’re gonna feel totally overwhelmed. Look at the path from where you are now to where you wanna be and just keep putting one foot in-front of the other. Before you know it you’ll have done it. 

Another great reason to focus on the small things you can do consistently is that you stay present in the moment and are far more open to learning what you need to learn in order for the change in behaviour to actually stick. 

When we speed through a journey, we miss out on all the amazing scenery and consequently don’t always appreciate the end result. And when we resist even going on the journey in the first place, we deny ourselves the opportunities to learn, grow and find the happiness we deserve. 

If your intuition is telling you to go a certain way but your brain is trying to look for a short cut, my advice would be to follow your intuition. And don't feel like you need to justify that choice to your brain or anyone else.