My Inner Enemy- The Resistance
Updated: Oct 13, 2022
As the alarm went off at 5:00 a.m., I woke up. I go to the gym at 6:00 a.m. Every morning I am faced with the same inner battle. "Sleep a while longer." "The weather is so good. Why you want to go out in the cold?" I ignored the voice in my head and continued my morning ablutions. As I washed my face, I looked at my reflection in the mirror. My eyes looked a little tired. "See? You are tired. How can anything be more important than sleep?" That moment I had an epiphany. The question that flashed before my mind made me alert instantly. The reason being that the question got me thinking intensely and even started bothering me.
I asked myself- "This voice within me wants me to go back to sleep. It is coming from within me. It is a part of me. I want to wake up at 5 a.m. daily to workout. Working out will benefit my health and well being at all levels of existence. How can something within me that is a part of me discourage me from doing something that is actually good for me!?" It did not make any sense. It defied all logic! The question enabled me to get an insight into the functioning of the human mind. The mind seduces us with thoughts that give us instant gratification. In this instance, me falling asleep is instant gratification whereas working out is delayed gratification.
Steven Pressfield in his book, the War of Art, calls this inner enemy 'Resistance'. Resistance shoves us back into our comfort zone and makes its best efforts to ensure we stay cuddled in the embrace of delusion. The way to battle Resistance that I started using from that day onwards was just having a conversation within. For every thought, idea or opinion that came up nudging me to the warmth of the bed, I would just repeat the question- "How can something that is a part of me discourage me from doing something that is actually good for me?!"
This question empowered me to defeat that part of the mind that wanted me to settle and strengthened that part of the mind that wanted to excel. The two mythological wolves, positivity and negativity, are within us and our energy and decisions decide which wolf we feed. We often feed fear, despair, desparation instead of courage, opportunity and excellence!
Next time you feel your Resistance pushing you away, ask yourself the question and I am sure it will work!
How can something that is a part of me discourage me from doing something that is actually good for me? - Anirud C