Ever get stuck? Everyone encounters resistance when it comes to blogging, writing, and creative work. It’s so easy to give in, isn’t it? When it comes to doing work – putting words on the page… or electrons on a screen – you can’t escape getting stuck.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a scientist, blogger, CEO or rock star. Work requires you to actually do something. When you sit down to do it (or stand up, whatever), you experience stuckness – a state of mental morass punctuated by mind chatter and an inability to move.
Instead of “just doing it,” you face fear, self-doubt, procrastination, and paralysis. Sometimes there’s an actual reason for resistance to strike. Other times, there’s no damn reason at all – it just shows up in all it’s demonic glory.
This week my husband had emergency heart surgery – successfully, without problems. A small device was implanted to ensure regular heart beats and give him a little jolt whenever it stops.
A health emergency, a broken heart (real or emotional), and important career pursuits can trigger emotional, intellectual or spiritual stress. When that happens, Resistance – with a capital “R” – jumps in to take advantage of the moment and to exploit weakness.
According to Steven Pressman, author of The War of Art and Do the Work, the more you want to embark on a creative journey from a lower level of consciousness to a higher plane – the loftier your ideal – the more Resistance is likely to invite you to dance.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re trying to put together a 300-word blog post, a novel, a political campaign, complete a mural or sculpture, compose a symphony, or create a new app. Anytime you take a principled stand in the face of adversity, you risk provoking the demons of Resistance.
Resistance aims to stop us from doing our work. It does so by distraction, negativity, and high emotional states, either positive or negative. And it loves fear.
So any actual fear or danger that pops into your daily life has great potential for pulling you away from work. The solution? Don’t ignore it, it gets very angry and strong when you don’t pay it attention.
Instead, acknowledge it for the beast it is. Give it due respect. “Good to see you again, old friend.”
And then use it to fuel yourself into action. Write about it. Resistance hates it when you do that; it makes him feel so small.
Do what you have to do, but do your work whatever else you feel like doing. Don’t think, don’t rationalize, and above all, don’t give in to powerful feelings. The thing is, feelings are just that – they’re emotions that come and go. Some you enjoy, some you hate, but regardless, all emotions pass like ships in the night.
What you can’t let go of is your desire and passion. There will be moments when this feels diminished as stronger feelings temporarily overcome you. But your desire and passion to create, whatever that is, will never leave you if you don’t leave it. So use it. Write. Design. Create. Blog.