Below is a text conversation between my then 18 year old daughter Alysha, and myself exactly one year ago today.
I share this with you today because resistance is something that all of us face at some point or another. I see it a lot with my clients when it comes to trying out new exercise for the first time.
Alysha has been working out with me since she was roughly 13-14 years old (on and off…but mostly off 🙂
She’s always just jumped into my own personal programs or followed my lead. Of course I’d correct her form or modify stuff for her if it was too challenging.
When she moved out last year to go to college, it wasn’t a question of “am I going to train when I move out?” but more so “where and when am I going to train when I move out?”.
Once she was settled in to her apartment, she joined a gym near nearby. It took her a couple of weeks to finally get the courage up to go. Finally, I talked her off the ledge. She took the plunge and decided that her first day at the gym was going to be a leg workout.
The afternoon that she planned to workout, she warned me that I needed to be by my phone. This was in the case that she freaked out and got confused on a machine that she wasn’t familiar with (since all gym machines vary a little bit depending on make, models, etc).
She was armed with a program that I wrote for her, she took it with her and went to the gym…ALONE.
Mind you, as independent as this child is, she is insanely co-dependent on ME to push her out of her comfort zone. She gets pissed at me, refuses, I talk (slightly force lol) her into feeling the fear and doing it anyway. Afterwards I am almost always met with a resounding “you were right mom”. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.
As much as she hates me for it initially, she loves me for it in the end.
Parenting my daughter has taught me more than I would’ve ever imagine. As much as I have considered her resistance to trying new things as a pain in my ass, it’s within these parental challenges that I’ve found I need to practice what I preach.
Now that she is a young woman, she is quick to point out my resistance to certain projects. She knows exactly where I am holding myself back.
Even though the steps below aren’t exactly how I’ve coached her (and my clients!) on the process in working through resistance, ultimately this has been the strategy.
When I am facing inner resistance towards anything I have to bring myself to mindfulness immediately. A quick reality check usually sets me up for owning up to my resistance and what good can come out of it once I face it.
Step 1: Face it. Facing resistance without fighting it is the only way to grow out of it. The more you resist the thing you know will prove to benefit you in the end, the more you feed resistance. Look it in the face, call it what you want and charge through it.
Step 2: Don’t ignore it. Ignoring your resistance towards doing the work feeds anxiety. You will fixate on what you aren’t doing and create undo stress around it.
Step 3: Move through it. Trying to work yourself around the obstacle is avoidance at its finest. You can try as hard as you’d like to find ways to move around it, but the thing that is blocking your path IS your path.
Remember ladies, the only way to conquer your fears and resistance is to walk straight into the path in which it lies. There is no way around it.
Confidence in any endeavor is built by doing that thing that scares you over, and over, and over again.
Today is the first day of the rest of your life. So don’t dwell on past mistakes because that will get you nowhere. Instead, focus on what you can and WILL do today, tomorrow, and the rest of your life, and all of the great things that will happen because of your actions.
Don’t wait for the ‘time to be right’ (i.e. until it’s too late) to take action on your goals. If there’s something you really want to do, then find a way to do it now. Time is running out. Overcome your internal resistance today.
If you are ready to tackle some exercise head-on, either at home or in the gym, make sure to grab these 10 FREE workouts. I know you can do it!