To make one thing clear right from the beginning on. When you know something endangers you or other people severely, or whenever your heart tells you not to do something, don’t do it – do not do it! Just to be sure: do not do it, when it is not the right thing! What we are talking about here are the right things that we refuse to do, thinking the resistance to it, is the right thing while it is not. Too complicated? Do the right thing, it is always the right thing. But be sure that it truly is the right thing.
I plan my exercise the night before. I sign up for classes or decide which workout or yoga flow and meditation I will do the next day. Then I wake up and don’t feel like doing what I planned. Can you relate to that? Or should I rather ask who did not experience that at least once in their life? It is normal, and it is not a big deal, as long as it doesn’t become a habit.
Sometimes we really are tired the next day and our body really needs to rest. Or whatever it is you feel a resistance towards. Organizing the house, taxes, making that call, taking a day off – it can be absolutely anything.
Here is the shocking news: Somewhere around 90& of the time, when people don’t feel like doing something, they really need to do it! Sounds so counterintuitive and it is, but it is the right thing to do. The things you built the most resistance towards, is something that you need to take a closer look at. I recently was interviewed about men and yoga. Still many men think yoga is just for women and make fun of it. They would never even consider doing it, without having all the information about what yoga really is and how much they could benefit from it. Let’s take an example for women as well, just to be fair. Still many women think strength training is just for men and they don’t do it because they think it will make them look too manly, again without having an idea of what strength training can really look like. Obviously just an idea that doesn’t reflect reality. But it is their perspective and the people who don’t want to do it the most, probably would need it the most.
But why do we refuse to do something? Why really? We often don’t question our decisions or opinions on certain things. But when we do, we recognize that there is not a real reason but just some vague excuses. Not feeling like working out today? Why? Too tired… Come on, too tired to at least go for a walk? Too busy to have lunch? You know that your energy level will go down when you don’t provide your body with the energy it needs in order to fulfill all the tasks you are working on, right? Of course, you do. But interrupting work, doesn’t seem possible most days, because… Why again?
What is something you are resisting to do?
Why don’t you want to do it? Really give yourself some time to answer that. Our mind is very good at making us believe things, we don’t really support, because it is here to protect us from danger. It wants to keep things simple, it doesn’t like resistance, challenges, changes and all the beautiful but hard things that help us grow in life because they often come with risks and that means danger to the mind.
Our thoughts are not always in alignment with what we really want or even know is good for us. If you want to be able to do 100 push-ups, you need to practice. Let’s say you really want it, and you work on it for three days and on the fourth day you really don’t feel like it. Is it because you are really tired, and your muscles need the rest or is it your mind creating a resistance towards something that means change and challenge (again, the mind doesn’t like change and challenges)?
Everyone who is not regularly working on their mindfulness and thought pattern, as well as thought patterns, will be tricked by the mind over and over again.
Do you work on these things regularly? If not, I guess this is a reason to start working on it. Just in case you want to grow, to learn, to get beyond your limits. In case you want to be the creator of your life, using the mind rather as a tool than the tool using and tricking you.
Especially if we talk about personality traits, it can feel more than counterintuitive. Some people are naturally workaholics, always on the run, always doing something and having a really hard time to slow things down. To take a day off, to take time for lunch, to go to a restorative yoga class or a massage instead of the HIIT class that will push them even more and lower their energy levels even more. Then there are the kind of people who take things slow. They love yin yoga class, restorative classes, they might go to a massage every week and they love to have slow mornings, take time for their lunch and dinner. But they might also have trouble to get work done in time, feel pressured by deadlines and would not even think about taking a step into a HIIT (High-Intensity-Interval-Training) class, where they have to work under pressure and move fast.
Life is about balance. Some things are not our nature but in order to find balance, we need to do those things. The people who think stretching is a waste of time, not to mention a whole restorative class, guess what they need the most? Exactly. They should start to slow down and get out of their comfort zone of the hectic, fast lifestyle. Whereas the other type of person, needs to start to bring a little more movement and action into their life.
This is not just about exercising but it makes a great example. This is also about the way we think and how we do anything in life. Or rather, this is about the things we absolutely refuse to do. Because often times, those are the things we need to do, in order to find balance. Even or because it is so counterintuitive.
With time and practice, your mind will adjust. It will understand how much you benefit from doing those things and the resistance will go down.
I for the longest time thought meditation is a waste of time. Sitting there, doing nothing, didn’t make sense to me. I wanted to work and I would spend every single minute on achieving my goals and working on my dreams. It was the way I thought about it. Then I tried it a couple of times and it was exactly what I expected it to be and I didn’t do it for another year or so until I met a great yoga teacher who taught me that meditation is much more than what I was thinking. And it was exactly what I needed. It balanced my hyper active mind and helped me to create more mindfulness throughout my entire life. I just had to be honest with myself. I needed to rest and to slow down. I just didn’t want to because I was afraid that slowing down, meant wasting time while I had so much meaningful work to do. Also, I thought my body and mind were supposed to work, no matter what I was doing. I wouldn’t take care of myself enough, loving myself enough to understand how valuable it was to take time for myself and not just for work and all the things that needed to be done. It turned out that my work got much better. My relationships with all the people in my life improved, and my overall energy increased – by slowing down and recharging. I let fear and lack of self-love rule my decision, when it came to anything that had to do with self-care. Not just meditation but resting in between workouts, eating when I was hungry not just when I had time to, taking time just for myself, instead of helping others and so on.
Next time you think, that you absolutely have no time for something, remember that this might be exactly what you need. Next time you make fun of something that you would never do because it seems simply silly, remember that it might be what you need. The most counterintuitive thing to do, might surprise you in the most beautiful way eventually.