Resistance is my alert flag. You?

By Cathy McNally

About three weeks ago I slid slowly into resistance. I think I was attempting to delude myself with entertaining stories about what was going on; some magnificently ‘noble’ justification—but I saw myself. Yuk.

Then another pattern started to move into gear: self hate. Blaming and generally beating up on myself. Nah. Not going there. THAT is a huge waste of time. (this awareness is one potent benefit of getting older!)

So … what then? … I watched me in my resistance. 

Not a comfortable experience. Ugh. 

I hung out in it for about ten days. Managed to layer ‘busy’ onto my life sufficiently to keep me stretched and falling into bed exhausted each night. Convenient. Don’t have to think about it. 

The most interesting thing was the effect of not giving self-hating any air-time. Kindness and practicality were my alternatives. I simply saw that self-flagellation was not helpful and didn’t go there. Did not get deeply ‘stuck’… and stayed in my resistance.

What did my resistance look like? Not doing focused 20 minutes of breathing per day. This is a commitment I began on January 30th this year. I had kept my promise steadily up to now. I did, however, choose to get curious about my resistance … in a genuinely interested way. What jumped up was a clarity that ‘something’ was up. Something beginning.  I can sense it. And, if I breathe I can REALLY sense it. So I stopped.


Another few days of determined resistance followed this insight. (Friends who know how stubborn I am will not be surprised.) 

Then I chose to try my focused breathing practice again. First time, I could hear myself beginning to negatively judge how and how much I was inhaling, … exhaling, … sounding, … you name it. Ooops! Self-hating again. Neither practical nor kind again. Stop it. So I did. I just stopped. “Good enough will do” was my chosen thought. I can live with that. Good enough.

Today I am five days into the new stretch of my breathing practice. I am glad to not have resisted my resistance. I have embraced it. I feel better for including it, not trying to deny its existence. 

The ‘something is coming’ continues to swell in me. It is coming with puddles of tears. Apparently typical of my growth spurts these days! So, soggy growing is happening. When I figure out what ‘it’ is, I’ll update you. For now, I would be interested to hear your stories of noticing your resistance … and (eventually) moving forward anyway, in whatever way it may have happened for you. 

Looking forward to hearing.

With loving


April 26, 2016

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