Most people don’t like change and would rather stay stuck where they are. Do you think that it is easier for things to stay as they are? It takes less effort, plus it is what you know and are accustomed to. There is the proverb that says “better the devil you know than the devil you don’t”. Do you feel it is easier to deal with a familiar situation rather than take a risk with an unknown new person, job, country, neighborhood or lifestyle. When you decide to change, resistance comes up fast.
People come to me and say ” I want to heal my body”; I want to get fit; I want to lose weight; I want a new relationship!” You may say you want those things consciously, but your subconscious beliefs, fears and blocks keep you from moving forward or even cause you to backslide. The subconscious tends to run the show and it works on programming from childhood or from more recent times. The subconscious is an expert on procrastinating or losing focus. It tries to protect you from change in a very primitive and basic manner.
Mental programs become habits and can direct what you think, feel, who you are, what you believe, what your attitudes are, how you feel about anything and everything and what you say and do day in and day out in every area of your life. The brain has tens of thousands of major and minor programs running, similar to the programs on your personal computer. Your brain downloaded them from your parents, siblings, friends, teachers, religion, neighbors, government and even your associates at work. Many of them came into being due to the illogical thinking that cognitive behavioral therapy explains. Those programs form the basis of your self talk and inner chatter. They determine why one person succeeds in life and why another does not. The programs will eventually determine your education level, your income level, your relationships, your stress levels, the time it takes you to do things, your success at doing what you really want to do, how you express yourself, your personal integrity, happiness, ability to take responsibility for yourself and above all your ability to make choices that work for you or against you. Negative programming influences you to make choices that work against yourself. It makes you an expert on procrastination or losing focus. How many times have my clients started eating correctly or exercising only to find that it does not last for long. Then you berate yourself for failing. You beat yourself up with negative self talk which instills less confidence in yourself next time that you want to grow and change. The effects of old negative programming sounds like this:
I just cant do this right.
I just know it won’t work.
I’m not cut out for that.
I’m not creative enough.
I never have enough money.
I can’t get on with my boss.
I never seem to have the time I need to get everything done.
He/she is better than I am.
Every time I lose weight, I gain it and more right back again.
Some people have all the luck. Other people are lucky.
I never get anyplace on time.
I’ll never get great marks.
I just can’t seem to get organized.
I can’t make marriage work.
I get nervous just thinking about speaking in front of a group of people.
I just know that it is going to be one of those days.
It’s just too much for me.
I can’t maintain this.
I’m no good.
I’m too average to shine at…………
Whether it is an everyday matter or a big deal, your self talk goes on and on, leading/pulling you away from growth and change. Remember that every one of those negative self talk statements is a choice. You have the opportunity to begin to change your old negative programs that hold you back today. You can replace those old programs with a whole new set of programs that work for you instead of against you.
An Exciting Opportunity to Create New Programs.
When you allow those unnoticed self talk choices to have free reign in your mind, you are not aware that those choices are setting you up. In addition to the ones mentioned above, those programmed choices are telling you:
This is how I am.
This is the best you can hope for.
This is what you can expect from yourself.
This is how it’s going to be.
This is how my life is.
This is how the world works.
Every time you state another negative choice to yourself, you buy into and increase the programming eg: I am a victim of the economy or gender or race, class, education etc. One of the rules that governs the subconscious mind is that the strongest program always wins. The brain follows the strongest directions which you give it. You direct and the brain accepts. If you give yourself the same strong clear self direction repeatedly, the brain will tirelessly go to work to put your new program into practice. This is how you change.Old stuff comes up and you have to replace it daily. A bit like cleaning your house, it is an ongoing process.
Try this out. Find something you would like to change, make a choice to change it and put your choice in simple words on an index card. Carry it with you and read it at every opportunity throughout the day while tapping. Do this every day for 3 weeks. You will notice an improvement, a change either big or small. You will change inside because you have started to reprogram your mind. If you want to change your programs, change your choices. State them, write them down and get a clear picture in your mind of the results you want to achieve and turn your choice into a program. Do not be put off because it sounds too simple. As complex as the internal neurological programming and imprinting process is, the process of changing your programming by changing your choices is simple. Begin to reprogram yourself. Be patient! Choices create change. Do the work if you are serious about having a different experience. Every morning I sit with my journal and write in it the first things that come into my mind. I then decide what needs to change and write that down and proceed as I described above. Over years I have made huge internal changes using this method. I also tap on positive emotions that I want to experience more of. So negative programming is expressed and released and positive programming is reinforced and welcomed. It only takes 10-20 minutes.
Fear of Change and Resistance to Change:
If you overcome the denial and inertia that we all have and come and speak to me for the first time, we will work out your goals for one or several aspect of your life. Like most of us, you may be faced with various subtle forms of fear of change. The moment you start out with best intentions, up comes:
Self Sabotage: You start to move along with great enthusiasm and one way or another you screw up by doing something that sabotages the process. You may not even realize what is going on. Somehow you pause, deviate, stop altogether or do something that is guaranteed to wreck the coaching process. A classic one is not keeping your appointment with your coach for all sorts of complicated reasons. The bottom line is that self sabotage comes up for everyone. For example: friends or relatives come to stay with you; you get very busy at home or work; someone near to you gets sick and you end up helping them; some unexpected financial demand is made upon you; you get sick and lots of other things may occur. Fear of change and resistance to change take advantage of these everyday challenges and you disappear or stop the process. I have had thousands of clients/patients push ahead in the face of blockages to their coaching, but the big question is “will you ?”
Procrastination:You start delaying, putting things off and not following through with the tasks involved with coaching and change. I could easily write an entire book or blog on procrastination. Here is one little fix I use when someone says that they have not exercised for a week or failed to get started on it in the first place. Obviously they would have set daily exercise as a goal for themselves in the first place. I ask them to put the phone down and do 5-10 minutes of easy exercise. If they like they can follow a simple class on u tube. As soon as they have finished, they phone me back. This is not complicated or a big deal. Once they have done this they see how procrastination makes a big deal over an easy task. Also we tap on the new habit during the rest of the session to lock it into the subconscious. Follow this procedure yourself if you battle to get exercise done daily. In fact while doing the little routine exercise program tap between each different exercise while using an affirmation. After doing the new procedure, a few times, it becomes a habit. Before writing in your daily journal, you can quickly do little things that you have been leaving out and putting off right away. Another more drawn out approach is to write in your journal that you yet again failed to do any exercise. Write out a one liner affirmation eg. “I accept, love and forgive myself for not exercising today”.Tap while writing it out a number of times. See your blockage! Do not let yourself off the hook. Keep from damaging yourself with criticism, judgement, guilt or any other negative inner dialog. Make up an affirmation relating to what you want and intend to do. Tap on it and lodge it deep in your brain. You are busy installing a new program. It just takes determination and some work. Procrastination is very common. Do something about it. It can strangle your life if left unchecked.
Perfectionism: Things have to be 100% correct before you can get on with it. It might be your goal to do something 100%, but even then you begin where you are and slowly upgrade. I have worked with some top sports stars. They were aiming at doing a sport perfectly and worked towards that. We soon discovered all the guilt, negative judgments and self talk that were rattling around in their heads. Perfectionism is counterproductive. It is also a form of refusal. After tapping through their frustration, guilt and shame, their skills improved. Also we have to deal with our past failures, because they can ruin present success.It becames evident that being aware and staying in the present moment is the best strategy at all times, whether practicing or in the middle of a big tournament. High school and university students have to deal with similar problems. Pity that our society is so obsessed with 100% marks. If a student can do better than they did last year or last term, I feel that they are on the road to success. Competing with each other has some disadvantages. I believe trying to do a little better each day is a valid goal. We should not compare ourselves to others who come with their own innate abilities. That can be a formula for disgust and low self esteem. This is very evident with eating disorders which show the insanity of chasing after an illusive reality.
Indecision: You can’t make up your mind. You are lost in your options. You change your mind every 5 minutes. This will stop you from moving forward. One goal of coaching is to get very clear about what you want. Your goals must be clearly established. It can be as simple as wanting to be happy. Staying with that goal will lead to the uncovering of all obstacles to getting there.
We have looked at a few forms of resistance to and fear of change.
Resistance to Weight Loss:
Let us say you lose weight for example. Then you hit a plateau or encounter some problems in everyday life and your weight loss program comes unstuck. You start eating more and exercising less and gain all the weight back. What if this pattern keeps repeating itself? This shows that you have deep negative beliefs about losing weight. Often the negative belief is that it is not safe to be thin and pretty/attractive. Perhaps when you were younger, girls at school got jealous because you lost weight and started to look better than them. Suddenly you became competition for the men in your lives. Both the pretty shapely girls and the overweight girls could have seen you as a threat and given you a hard time. Back then you did not know why you started gaining weight again. You were seeking their approval. That policy can be operating in your mind to this day. Also losing weight could have upset your mom and your sisters. They may have been overweight and you showed them up, or they just enjoyed teasing you. Suddenly everyone got uncomfortable because you changed the family pecking order or hierarchy. Subconsciously you had misplaced loyalty and did not want to upset your family or circle of friends at school. Your success at change made them feel jealous because that showed them up to themselves.
When this sort of resistance puts in an appearance, I use EFT/tapping to change and remove the blocks that stop you losing weight. The block may be a relationship issue, a childhood/teenage issue, or a self esteem/image issue. It could also be physical problem that we have to address. When all these patterns, beliefs, relationships and physical problems are cleared up, dramatic change is possible.
Change vs Security.
Part of you wants to grow and change. Another part wants certainty and familiarity. Change moves us into unknown territory in our consciousness. Some people love the thrill of the unknown, while others fear it or at least experience a mixture of conflicting emotions about it. Your mind is always looking at the past, present and future and uses your past history to estimate the probability of success in the future. Since we have all failed at some time in the past, this can cause a fear of future failure/uncertainty and trigger fear. Your mind will then stop all forward movement. This is why taking responsibility and then action on behalf of our health often brings up conflict. The idea of giving up a negative thought, feeling or your daily sugar treat upsets your routine even if it does involve addictive behavior. This led me to using coaching and EFT to help people do something they know they need, but have difficulty implementing it. You will encounter fear and resistance to some degree. Do not let that put you off. Keep moving toward your greater joy, happiness and good health.
Change! What do you think?
To gauge whether you have resistance to change, think about the change you desire and ask yourself these questions:
1)What will happen if this changes?
2)What side effects of the change will upset me or those near and dear to me? In what ways will it effect or upset them or their egos?
3)What pain might I experience if I make this change?
4)What will or could I lose if I make this change?
5)What constructive measures can I take to avoid or facilitate these necessary changes? It can be as simple as talking to those who are close to you and explaining what you are doing and why.
When examining resistance I have found the same the same patterns come up whether you are trying to heal the body, mind, emotions, addictions, lack of money, relationships, career, or stressed out lifestyle. Using energy psychology techniques like EFT/tapping you can work through your issues and overcome fears, doubts, blocks and resistance. The change you seek may be good, but do you feel worthy of it? Earlier I mentioned weight loss, but something similar could come with a new job. Suddenly earning more money than your family or social circle of friends could alienate you to some degree. Any prosperity is seen as a betrayal by those who are unemployed, struggling financially or just plain jealous. It is a good idea to tap through your sense of deserving, being prosperous and being different from your social circle.
Layers of Resistance:
Below of every layer of resistance you will find deeper resistance or some totally different issue. Try asking yourself the following question.
- What is the upside of staying stuck where I am and keeping my problems? Really think about this, Close your eyes and tap while you think. Work out what agenda benefits by things staying the same even if it sounds a little crazy. Here are some possible answers:
People will continue to pity me and/or help me.
I have adjusted to the problem. I’m comfortable with it. Then why are you considering change in the first place.
I won’t have to change anything.
I get to keep doing what I have been doing.
I don’t want to work harder.
People won’t expect more from me
I’m familiar with it.
I won’t be making someone else uncomfortable if I suddenly shine and prosper.
I will never get the time off work that I have been getting.
- What’s the downside of things changing? ie getting over the problem. Close your eyes, think and tap. Here are some possible answers:
I’ll be noticed, more visible.
I won’t be able to handle it. It may show me up as being useless.
There will be more responsibility. Will I cope with that?
People will expect more from me than they have.
I’ll have to work harder.
I won’t be able to keep things the way they are.
I won’t have time to relax.
What if I put all this effort into it and it doesn’t work out how I want it to?
They can judge or criticize me.
What if I succeed briefly and then fail. At least I have an excuse while I have the problem.
People will no longer pity me. No one will pay me any attention.
So here are reasons why you might not want to change or maintain change(remember the drama that weight loss might have had on a teenager mentioned previously). No matter how many reasons you have for wanting what you want, the reasons you have for not wanting those changes can be more powerful. Just become aware of these issues and how they may be operating in your life.
Can you understand why making changes and sticking to the changes is complicated? Consciously you may know that in order to become healthy you just have to eat certain foods, avoid others, take certain supplements, exercise and manage stress. You also have to be reasonably happy in your relationships, job, family, community and be free from destructive addictions. Your brain has to work properly and your emotional scars/wounds need to be healed so that you can withstand change. Virtually everyone I have ever worked with needs a certain amount of tapping done on anxiety about change before they even get started with the process. If change is perceived as a security risk by your brain, which often happens, the limbic system kicks the body into an overwhelming fight or flight mode. The brain does not see change as bringing new good things into your life. It sees uncertainty, insecurity, risk, danger and a lot of negative things. So it decides that you must run away. The brain is far more concerned with danger because that is what it is programmed to do. Basic survival comes first since ancient times. Today we look at needs that are way beyond basic survival. The brain is not up to speed with this and therefore resists change. When you look at the connection between emotions and physical illness, take care not to add guilt and shame to your already heavy burden. That could add to your stress levels. So let’s just use tapping with compassion to train the brain to align with our goals.
Physical toxins cause disease and emotional stress. Stress causes physical toxins to be made. A vicious circle can start up. So as you try to improve health, whether you do physical, mental or physical work, you can very easily feel a lot worse initially. This is often referred to as detox. Often people do not understand this. They are perhaps doing good work, but they feel sicker, overwhelmed and stressed out. As you heal your body, lots of emotional stuff comes up plus perhaps you are feverish or have a runny tummy or a skin breakout. Also have you noticed how stressed and emotional you feel when you are going down with a bug. It works both ways. A person who is dealing with an emotion like anger, depression, jealousy, sorrow etc finds themselves getting ill and moving through layers of horrible emotions as they heal their emotions and their body kicks and squeals. Have you ever been very stressed for a few days and suddenly gone down with a cold or flu? Body mind and emotions are woven together so do not be surprised by reactions.
Align with Change.
You want change, but your conscious desire is not always steering the ship. What if you can get your unconscious mind in alignment with the part of you that is ready for change. Then you would have no hesitation in eating less and exercising more if you wanted to lose weight. If you wanted to make more money, you would have no problem working extra long hours if that was necessary. Change does not feel good if you are not in alignment with it. You can identify your limiting beliefs (both real and imaginary) and tap on them and move toward your goals with ease and joy if you reprogram your mind. Tapping can also make the process of change feel fun and safe. Layer after layer of resistance can be detoxified. EFT/tapping is a personalized ultimate motivational tool for dealing with our hidden obstacles to achieving the things we desire. The breakthrough from fear of change to a new level of awareness is exciting. As the desire to grow some more comes up, there will be new blocks to overcome. As well as EFT and coaching, I use NLP, CBT, EMDR, and visualization. It is very satisfying for me seeing my clients achieving better results than they could have without these techniques. They work well on a diverse range of health and wellness issues. People need help with eating healthy food, exercising, following a healthy lifestyle, managing physical and emotional pain, addictions, phobias, lack of willpower, becomming more happy and creative and maintaining better relationships.
Tapping targets the root cause of health and wellness challenges by interrupting the bodys’ stress response quickly and effectively. EFT/tapping is a powerful tool for enabling health of the body, mind, emotions and soul. I have used it with clients for hundreds of serious illnesses to great advantage. It produces consistent good results. It can facilitate you changing to a healthy plant and nutrient rich diet, regular exercise, using essential herbs and supplements and the management of stress levels. It is fast acting and non invasive. It can help free you from unnecessary medications, promote wellness and create a more loving abundant life.