I’ve been thinking a lot about the nature of resistance over the last 24 hours. How I got to be thinking about it is a happy confluence of things I’ve been studying. I have long been interested in helping people lead change, and the Resistance Monster is a constant enemy. But the Monster is always in hiding, so it took something to make me more conscious about the Monster and to want to talk about it. That something started with a book called Do the Work, which talks a lot about resistance.
And then the Resistance Monster was forced into focus into my conscious mind by studying some of the teachings of Brendon Burchard, a personal development guru, and Fabienne Fredrickson, a client attraction guru. They both focused on our need to serve, and to find the thing we most need to serve. For a long time, I thought that was leading change, but I could not get excited about it despite knowing a lot about it and knowing how to help people with it.
I think that thing that I most need to serve is helping people beat the Resistance Monster. Maybe this discovery is good fortune, good luck or the work of the laws of attraction. Whatever that force is is a topic for another day. But whatever, I know I need to write and talk about Beating the Resistance Monster, before the Monster stops me.
You may not have consciously thought about the Resistance Monster before, but he/she/it is there and everywhere. It is omnipresent. It lives in me and in you. It hides in the shadows of our unconscious minds. It is heartless and unfeeling. It is relentless, unstoppable and persistent. It never sleeps. It never breaths. It never rests. It is insanely creative in finding ways to stop us and make us weak. It’s worse than the Terminator. It’s worse than the Borg.
It’s a horrible and insidious Monster that stands between who you are and who you could be. It stands like a wall between you and your potential.
I used to think that its goal was sameness. That it wanted things to stay the same. That was wrong. The Resistance Monster likes sameness, but only if it supports its real goal. The real goal of the Resistance Monster is CONTROL. The Monster wants us weak and compliant. The Monster wants total control.
It will use any tools and weapons it can to maintain control. It hides from our conscious minds using deception, distraction, social norms, procrastination, fear and temptation to get it’s way.
Even worse, my Resistance Monster colludes with other Resistance Monsters to stop me and you. It’s greatest weapons of mass control are our communication systems(meetings, mail, email, phones, internet, etc). It uses these systems to distract us and divert us from what we should really be doing.
Just think about it, how many meetings and emails are about your life purpose? Probably none. Emails are about getting us to do what someone else wants. The Monster knows this and uses it to distract and control us.
Why is opening up your email system and reading your email so important? Because the Monster wants it to be so. Our Monster has colluded with the other Monsters to create a social norm that we must read and respond to our email. It has that power.
If we want to realize our potential or to realize the potential of our organizations, we must do battle with the Resistance Monster and we must beat it into submission. And then we must do it again and again. This is a war that the Monster will never stop waging. We can win battles and make lots of progress, but the Monster will be back to fight another day.
But if we are to realize our potential, we must fight, we must win the battles that really matter. We must beat the Resistance Monster.