Most of us have two lives. The life we live, and the unlived life within us. Between the two stands what Steven Pressfield calls ‘Resistance’ in his book The War of Art.
Have you ever brought home a treadmill and let it gather dust in the attic? Ever resolved on a diet, an exercise regime, a meditation practice? Have you ever felt a call to embark upon a spiritual practice, dedicate yourself to a humanitarian calling, commit your life to the service of others? Have you ever wanted to be a mother, a doctor, an advocate for the weak and helpless; to run for office, crusade for the planet, campaign for world peace or to preserve the environment? Late at night have you experienced a vision of the person you might become, the work you could accomplish, the realized being you were meant to be?
Are you a writer who doesn’t write, a painter who doesn’t paint, an entrepreneur who never starts a venture?
Then you know what Resistance is.
Resistance is the most toxic force on the planet. It is the root of more unhappiness than poverty, disease and erectile dysfunction. To yield to Resistance deforms our spirit. It stunts us and makes us less than we are and were born to be. If you believe in God (and I do) you must declare Resistance evil, for it prevents us from achieving the life God intended when He endowed each of us with our own unique genius. Genius is a Latin word; the Romans used it to denote an inner spirit, holy and inviolable, which watches over us, guiding us to our calling.. A writer writes with his genius; an artist paints with hers; everyone who creates operates from this sacramental center. It is our soul’s seat, the vessel that holds our being-in-potential, our star’s beacon and Polaris.
Unlike most of us who aren’t so sure how much we really want something and if we are willing to do everything it takes, Resistance has no such problem. It is determined,steadfast and discipline. The good news is, we can defeat the Resistance. We acknowledge that the Resistance is at work in us. And we must move every morning to conquer it.
If this post speaks to you in anyway, I will recommend you read Pressfield’s The War of Art, it’s is one of the most helpful books I have read in a while to get you to act.