A man on a surfboard, riding a wave. Understanding Resistance

Understanding Resistance

Blocking the Flow of Life

Our lives would be so much simpler and easier if we went with the flow. But we don’t. We create resistance because of a number of factors, which is not dissimilar to trying to paddle upstream on a powerful river. What we need to do is to let go. That is the hardest thing you can do.

Why is it hard? The factors I mention are things like ego, wants and not wants, lack of clarity, indecision, lack of goals, beliefs and ideals, to name just a few. Each of us has their own reasons why we block the flow and create resistance. It’s hard to let go because we have a vision of our ideal life, but we are not willing to let that ideal go for something that would be better.

I think this is one of the hardest ideals to explain, because it’s so personal to each of us.

Lets start with explaining what I mean with resistance.

What is it?

We are not talking about a resistance movement or the type that refers to electricity. However, the concept is the same, except that we are talking about our minds and our mindset. We are talking about the resistance we create in getting to where we either want to get or the path that has been set for us.

Most people will feel more comfortable with the first bit in that last sentence, because it means that we can follow our own path and get what we want – that we have complete control. The later implies that our destiny is not in our hands.

I believe that it is a combination of both. In one part we need to recognise what we can do so easily that people wonder how on earth we made that happen. To us it’s so normal that we believe that everyone can do it, so it never strikes us that it is something we are good at. In that lies a path, that if we followed it, we’d find life easy and things would fall so easily in place we wonder what’s actually going on. At these times we are with the flow and resistance is virtually non-existent.

On the other hand, we could be doing something where nothing seems to work. The opportunities don’t exist, the people are not there and nothing seems to be going well. At these times resistance is high.

This resistance is not something that can be touched. It is an ideal. It is an energy and a negative one. It is also self created.

It could be that you are doing something that you ought to be doing, on your talent, but nothing seems to be going right. Doubts, fears and false beliefs are what create this resistance. You don’t believe you can, the new thing is a problem rather than a challenge. You don’t believe you can do it, but in truth that’s only because you are not willing to give it a go or you just haven’t tried it.

There is the other side to resistance. There are times when to get to where we want to get we have to break through barriers of resistance. To get stronger we use resistance and gravity. Gravity is a resisting force, without which we would float away. This resistance is the one we overcome and, like the resistance we create, it’s based on overcoming fears and biases.

It’s not what I want

So you have your ideal life in your mind. Somehow, opportunities and people appear in your life that pull you in a completely different direction. And you are resistant to it.

This is the hardest part of all. Some or all of our ideals are based on what we think we want – the material stuff, the status, the acknowledgement.

I understand this, from a personal perspective. I was so much into the status part, that it was important that I reach a place where I could drive a car so that people could see my success. Now that is a lot of ego. And fears.

For some people, that alone, the ego, is such a driver that they will succeed in their endeavour. The question at the end is whether they are happy or not, whether that wealth transfers to all areas of their lives or just to money. And whether had they let go of their ego, they would have found themselves in a better place.

The other part is the direction we are pulled in. For example, I’ve tried for years to get away from the Security Industry, in which I have worked in for the best part of my life to date. But it keeps coming back.

And that in itself is the key – what you push against, pushes back.

On the other hand, sometimes there is a passion that we try to suppress that life just won’t let us get away with. For me it’s professionalism, particularly in the industry I spent most of my life in.

So although I ignore my previous talent and focus on this part of my life, the speaking, the writing, the reading, the knowledge and understanding on the mind and our lives, what was, persists. And I find myself at times pushing back, resisting the idea.

But I needn’t do that. No one has ever said that the two cannot co-exist; except for me, myself and I, in the idea that I can only be one or the other.

You may find yourself at what you consider a crossroads, missing the whole point that maybe, just maybe it’s not a crossroads, but two parallel roads merging into one.


When we push against life, it’s because we feel that we are losing control of what we want. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Our mind is a goal seeking mechanism and it can only be guided towards a goal that we have set firmly in our mind. What that goal is does not matter – whether its beneficial or not the subconscious does not care. It just moves you towards it.

You consciously control only about 2% of your daily decisions and actions – these are the times when you have to really think about a solution or an action that you have not experienced before. And even then your subconscious programming plays a massive part in the decision you reach.

In other words, we are never, really, in control. We just think we are.

But by consciously setting goals and targets, and writing them down, we create in our mind a path we want to follow. As long as the belief and the feeling that we can achieve that goal is there, our subconscious will guide us towards it.

We then need to relax into what comes and accept every turn of the karmic wheel to be a part of the process. Life has an energy of its own, reflected in our energy and that of the universe. And just like our subconscious, the universe will give us back that which we give out.

Thomas Troward explained that the universal, subconscious mind is connected to our own subconscious mind, and in order for our wishes to come into our reality there needs to be a connection. That connection is the mental bridge between our subconscious and conscious mind. Where we stumble is when we fail to act, due to a lack in belief.

Belief again

This is a recurring theme in all that I write, because without belief and faith there can be no action, there can be no realisation of a goal or target.

In the same way, I’m expecting you to believe that this ideal of a universal energy that can be blocked through a resistance that we create mentally, due to our beliefs, faith, biases, ego and self image, is real. You can’t touch it, you can’t taste it, you can’t smell it and you can’t see it. But it’s there. Just like every thought you have, it is a wave of energy.

Okay, it’s hard to accept, to let go of control, because of the fear that we are not going to get to where we want to get to. Most of this is due to a lack of belief and believing, that everything is working to our benefit and for us. Past experiences will seem to show that life is against us, but we fail to see the mistakes we made at that time, not listening to our intuition, allowing pride and ego to get in the way, failing to act for ourselves or others.

Neither life or God or the universe “punish” us for something. That is all down to our own actions. It’s Karma in the most traditional meaning of the word – your future is dependant on your past and present actions.

Learn to let go and release resistance.

As Esther Hicks once said, we tend to paddle upstream, because we think that everything we want is upstream, but the truth is that if we put the paddles back in the boat and let the river take us, we’d find that all that we truly want is downstream.

Resistance creates suffering. Stress happens when your mind resists what is… The only problem in your life is your mind’s resistance to life as it unfolds.
Dan Millman

The path of least resistance and least trouble is a mental rut already made. It requires troublesome work to undertake the alternation of old beliefs.
John Dewey

Remember, it is not the movement of a machine that wears it beyond use and service, it is friction. Friction is opposition and resistance.
Raymond Holliwell

Photograph by: Mauro Paillex on Unsplash

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