How to push through the fear and resistance you can experience when you start to up-level in business
I believe that any time we up-level in business or life and do something new, something that requires us to step-up and be counted and really be seen by others, we experience two things.
(And I know for the entrepreneurs reading this, these two are going to be very familiar.)
- Fear (Also masquerades as doubt, stuck, overwhelm & anxiety)
- Resistance (AKA Let me just make one more cup of tea and check Facebook before I start the piece of work I know I need to do but just cant quite bring myself to think about.)
These guys show-up any time we are required to move forward, and make no mistake, even the most seemingly successful people experience these feelings.
If were venturing into new territory, theyll be there, often by the bucket-load, sometimes as feelings in our bodies, but also as voices in our heads telling us things like
Youre not ready.
You dont know enough yet.
And lets not forget the age-old People are going to find out youre an imposter/fraud/(insert whatever word youve been noticing has been cropping up for you lately in this camp).
I recently experienced massive fear and resistance around a fairly substantial business-growth task Ive been working on with my coach. Everything was set, we were on track with the elements of what I was creating, and then when I least expected it, up popped an old self-limiting voice that instantly made me doubt myself, feel constricted, and subsequently begin to doubt if the method she had recommended for me was correct.
And thats the thing about fear and resistance, although we need them in healthy amounts to check-in with our alignment at times, they can often show-up right when we need them the least, like someones ex-girlfriend showing up uninvited at a wedding.
The problem with fear and resistance is that its actually pretty easy to listen to them. When were up-levelling and stepping into unchartered waters, in business, relationships, or in any other areas of our lives, they can be very seductive, because ultimately they can try to keep us safe.
If we listen for them for too long and lean into our old habits or patterns, we can end up doing not much of anything because they warn us that stepping outside the comfort zone, outside the chartered territory that we already know, is a pretty big risk, a terrifying place to be even.
But youve got to ask yourself what matters more to you. Achieving your dreams and being able to look back proudly on all the things youve created, or playing it small but essentially safe when it comes to money, investment, time and risks on new things.
Any form of change and stepping-up is scary because it requires us to turn the volume down on our fear and resistance just long enough to cross the line, but if youve been struggling with moving forward lately it might be because youve been completely trying to silence your fear and resistance because theyve become too loud.
If this sounds familiar and youve found yourself feeling all of a sudden restricted, limited and essentially just not enough, heres what you can start to do instead:
Welcome them in
Acknowledging when these feelings show up is the first step to understanding them, and yourself, a whole lot better. Ultimately, this is about showing yourself a little compassion and allowing yourself to feel comfortable with the fact that the experience of fear and resistance is totally normal. Notice when you are in struggle mode, when your chest feels tight, and when you’re feeling caged-in. Fighting these emotions can leave us feeling pretty crappy, because what we do here is distract ourselves to turn down the volume on them BECAUSE they are raising uncomfortable questions within us, but unfortunately where we then find ourselves is in a place of stuck, procrastination, and most importantly, we haven’t taken any steps forward with the task at hand. So see them, say hi, and be OK with them hanging out for a while.
Breathe and walk
If nothing else, you’ve got to breathe through your resistance & fear. You don’t have to necessarily identify immediately why they have chimed-in, but you’ve got to take a breath and just stop and allow yourself to feel them being present. The next step, rather than pushing them away by going into overwhelm, is to let them know they are totally welcome to hang out with you but they are going to have to walk alongside you whilst you get to work. What you’ll find is, because they’ve realized you cant give them your full attention right now, they’ll soon get bored and move on. So breathe deeply, start moving (and a literal 15 mins on your yoga mat or running outside will help), and dont give them the attention you might normally lavish them with in the form of anxiety or overwhelm.
Get into a place of action
This is the most important step. We all want more clarity in life and business, because when were super clear and focused, fear and resistance aren’t usually anywhere around. Clarity comes from more and more action, and action naturally dissolves the overwhelming effects fear and resistance can have on us IF, and only if, we allow them to take hold. So simply don’t let them take that grip. Ask yourself what one small action you can take right now to break down a project you’re starting. Or if you’ve hit a hurdle, take 5 minutes to sit, set an intention to find a solution, meditate on it, and then come back to it with a fresh head. Remember that you don’t need to know everything right now, you just need to stay in consistent and aligned action and before you know it, things will take beautiful shape.
Pushing through resistance and fear is key if we want to get to where were headed, and although doing this can feel extremely uncomfortable at times, each time you do it, you’ll learn a little more about a deeper layer of yourself and what you’re truly capable of.