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Sometimes, the hardest part of the work isn’t the work, it’s the resistance.
This is probably true of anything we create. For me right now, that’s Healing Lab, the company I’m starting to research energy healing.
Sometimes I think, “If only I could plow through tasks for eight hours a day, this business would have been up and running months ago.” But I can’t, because each task brings up resistance: The vision that’s big and intimidating, the events I’m afraid no one will like, the fear that none of this will work, that it’ll all be wasted effort.
Each day, more than half my effort goes into working through resistance.
And writing this, I realized: That’s the point of this year. To work through the resistance, to become comfortable sharing the vision and organizing the events and doing the work.
I’ve been focusing on the output (like website, classes, studies) and wishing I could do more of them in a day. But measuring the total number of tasks is the wrong metric, it pushes me toward easier tasks, and pushes me to brush off the resistance rather than addressing it. Much better to measure the number of emotionally difficult tasks I worked through, the insights I had and the amount of resistance I resolved. Harder to measure, but far more important.
(And a possible misinterpretation I want to avoid: It’s still important to finish tasks. Each task brings up resistance. To sit at home, not finishing tasks, just congratulating ourselves for thinking about resistance — that doesn’t actually bring up the resistance we need to work through. This is still about doing the work, it’s just about accepting a slower pace as we work through resistance.)
I’m going to break the fourth wall now. This short post took me four hours to write. But writing it (and the pages of early drafts) caused me to look at my resistance, and my desire to complete more tasks, and to recognize my real work. These sentences were hard because they were part of accepting this process, instead of punishing myself for it. And recognizing that, saying, “That’s what I accomplished today,” I feel much more at peace with the pace of starting this business.
It also has me ask, “Which tasks feel hardest right now?” Because that’s the one with the most resistance. That’s the one to focus on.If you liked this post, consider visiting my current blog at mikesententia.com.