b. Resistance: Preparing for Change

Resistance is not a bad word. It’s a fact of nature. It is used to describe the force that makes it possible for airplanes to fly. However it is also a word that is linked to a person’s thinking. If you think that resistance is a problem in one person then read no further, because resistance is part of the systems adjustment mechanism. It is one of nature’s ways. Whenever one person in a system wants to change any degree of change will alter the others who are emotionally close. And why should they not be resistant to some change that they did not initiate or even think about?

Resistance puts the brakes on the system. It’s an emotional reaction to change. If you decide, “I will do X.” Get ready for resistance. The others in your relations almost are compelled to say, “Please do not disturb us.” Next they will ask you to change back.

Realizing your personal vision began by figuring out what was important and where to communicate your different point of view. You wrote down your dreams and now you want others to understand them. You draw up a plan for your new career in cyberspace and your loved one says, “Oh no, not that.”

If you think about changing ahead of time then you will know that resistance is nature’s way. Then it is no big deal to be kind and loving to those who are being threatened by the forces of Mother Nature. If you can remain calm then the system will rebalance and the resistance will fade. If you can see how it might happen ahead of time then you will be far more able to manage the internal feeling states that are generated by being different.

People often say that they cannot do something as it will upset the other but often it is simply that they are not able to withstand the upset that is in them when the other reacts. How much time and effort are you willing to put into 1) defining a self to others, 2) listening to the resistance, 3) managing to stay calm and remain connected to the other, while waiting patiently for 4) the system to re-equilibrate, depends on how well the effort will go.

Separating out a self from important others is not an easy task. Differentiation is not something that you can sell to others. It is too hard. The degree of difficulty has to do with the significance and difficulty of the “I” statement to you and to the system. Knowing ahead of time how to predict what an emotional system will do takes practice. Knowing the emotional forces is not a game to take lightly. However it is good to stay loose emotionally but in contact with all in your emotional system.