5 Ways to Fight Back Against Resistance

Updated: June 18, 2012

Andrew McBeth

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This is a guest post by Andrew McBeth.

No matter the tenacity you put forth to dismiss it, that thought lodged deep at the back of your mind—the life adventure you’re too scared to face—won’t back off.

At this point the thought comes on mild, like growing pains. (I recall the summer of 1992: absolute freedom; all day bouts of Road Hockey ending in all night bouts of leg pain. Whoever said childhood was all sunshine and lollypops, lied.)

What freaks you out the most though, knowing it’s only a matter of time before this dull mind ache takes on a life of its own.

You know the more you resist the urge the stronger it'll come on. Soon enough desire will become compulsion.

Why resist though, why not act? Deep down you know how you want the story to play out, we all do. So, what's holding you back from writing the script?

Fear of the unknown, that's what.

Even though you’re unhappy, at least you’re comfortable within the confines of routine. There’s no reason to risk comfort in pursuit of desire, right?

Author Steven Pressfield blames our inability to act on Resistance—anything keeping one bound, imprisoned, unable to pursue their dreams.

Resistance Crops Up in Many Forms

  • Fear
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Self-defeat & self-sabotage
  • Negative opinions from friends and family
  • Routine

The question then, becomes: how does one break the shackles of Resistance?

1. Define the desire. Figure out what you want (pay off debt, buy a house, take a trip, run a marathon, lose 50lbs, ext.) and write it down. Putting the desire to paper brings it to life. Dreams are great—pure passion, but, left in the mind, they rot, and eventually die off. We give up.

2. Do the work. Making any dream a reality is going to take sacrifice—you know, blood, sweat, and tears. Dig deep, hop into your trench and find the discipline to bear down and do the work .

3. Give your desire voice. Don't be shy, talk about your dreams. Tell your family and friends. Chatting up a dream manifests passion and drive. And both are vital to the end result—dream becoming reality.

4. Don't give up. No matter what, don't lose sight; keep your eyes fixed on the prize. Resistance will come in a variety of forms including: friends and family members, crappy "wrong place, wrong time" situations, and self-doubt. At times you won't only feel overwhelmed, you will be, but these are the moments that carry the most weight, these are the moments that define your will to advance.

5. Remember, this is fun. If pursuing a dream becomes woeful, take a time out and reassess why you are putting in the effort. Chasing a dream should be a fun adventure. Not a pain in the ass.

I want you to know I'm honored you took precious time out of your day and read this blog post. Please don't shelve it away with all the other blogs you have forgotten about. Take what you read here and apply it to your life, today. Unless invoked, new found knowledge is useless. Stop spectating and get in the game!

"Walk away from your dream today and you will continue to walk away forever."

Go ahead, step into the unknown, and fill the void. Besides, you only live once right? Trust me when I tell you, regret ain't your friend.

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

- Mark Twain

Question: What forms of Resistance run-a-muck in your life, and how do you push through them?


All drawings were created by Rob Middleton from Joy of Cartoon Pictures.

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