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My Secret for Overcoming Resistance and Transforming My Life

My Secret for Overcoming Resistance and Transforming My Life

How you feel about your life right now is likely going to be how you will feel about it until your time on earth is over, unless: you either have a near death experience or you go through a time that’s dramatic enough to shock you into truly wanting to transform your life.

Most of the 500 or more entrepreneurs (male, female and of all ages) who have received transformational coaching from me, and subsequently seen their life transform to new heights, expressed that, before then, no matter how hard they worked to break out of it, they had a frustrating sense of ‘sameness’ about their life.

What It Takes to Transform Your Life

One client I coached recently was a property investor. He’d built up his business over 10 years to enable him to travel across South America.

Problem was, he always had something getting in the way that he had to handle to run the business. It was exhausting for him.

In receiving coaching from me he became aware of an event that happened when he was 7 years old. He was meeting his extended family in a restaurant in India for the first time. His mother guided him into the communal toilets and he asked, “Mom, where is the toilet?”

She then pointed at the cubicles that had no doors, holes in the ground instead of toilets and people taking their turn while in full view of everyone else and said, “That is the toilet!”

At the time he became scared and realized he was thinking, “I’m not safe.” And this was the way he interpreted the world. From that moment onwards the world was ‘I’m not safe’.

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Through his life and times in business, this caused him to choose ‘safety’ above all. As a result, he created stable investment opportunities that grew over 10 years and enabled him to own six large properties, but the problem was that this very interpretation (which became a way of being) was now the very thing that was also holding him back from growing his business or enjoying the fruits of his labour.

Once he awakened to see this interpretation, he got that he didn’t have to be ‘I’m not safe’ any longer and micromanage everything. With further coaching, he began answering the question, “What would it actually take for me to create my business to enable me to travel to South America?” So he systemized each business process. As a result, within a few months of the first session, he packed his bags and left to fulfil his dream ambition (that he’d had for over 10 years) of travelling across South America.

He’s since posted photographs of this trip on Facebook, and on returning to the UK, left again a few weeks later to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. Now he is back in the UK and looking at travelling across Japan. He’s since also managed to expand his business and is on track for greater profits than ever before from rental income. His life has transformed completely.

So what will it take for you to overcome your resistance to doing the deeper work? To see what interpretations you’ve made about yourself and the world around you? Also to see how they may be holding you back from taking those important actions?

If you want to access a new level of satisfaction through your work, elevate the quality of your life and find a deeper sense of freedom, doing this deeper transformational work is the only way.

Why the Resistance Is So Strong

You and any other entrepreneur out there are only going to succeed when you change how you are ‘being’, as this is where the actions that you take arise from. But why is it so difficult to change how we are being and in turn change the actions we take? The reason is that when we set out to realize an ambition, we are faced with a period of ‘latency’ before the results show.

In this period of latency we are faced with the unknown, and the reptilian part of our brain is wired to ensure that we never fail again. So it viciously reminds us of all the things we’ve failed at and ensures that we don’t take actions that may result in us experiencing those failures again. The result is, the resistance to change dominates us, we remain in (seemingly chosen) procrastination and we subconsciously avoid doing the deeper inner transformational work.

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This then results in many (and possibly you) spinning in a sense of ‘sameness’.

So how are we to conquer this? Firstly understand that your brain is wired to predominantly survive. Understand that your brain will consistently avoid you ever taking actions that could cause you to experience more moments of failure again.

Once you grasp this, you are then aware that your attention is usually on what could go wrong rather than on a new, possible and inspirational future.

Risk assessment need not be cast aside completely; however, we cannot have this as the primary driver because it’s a state of survival which causes our creative mind to shut down.

Once this happens, most people report entering a ‘Groundhog Day’ sensation- that every day feels the same and they can’t see a way out. Once we take our mind off ‘surviving’ and instead begin to practise seeing the tiny successes that we have every day, we then move from a state of survival and into a state of ‘creation’. This is a relaxed state of being that allows us to see opportunity, to think innovatively and become inspired as we begin to envision a whole new and inspirational future.

If you commit to this way of thinking, you’ll shift your mindset from one of looking for what you can ‘survive’ to one of looking for opportunities to ‘create’. Once you practise this, you’ll begin to notice the incremental successes every day. This will cause you to feel inspired about yourself and your abilities; you’ll then find it much easier to take those important actions and will begin awakening yourself to the wonders of what you are truly capable of again.

5 Transformational Steps

Here are 5 easy to follow yet powerfully transformational steps you can take to begin to break through the resistance required to transform your life.

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1. Imagine Living the Dream

Imagine you took every action you knew to take and that you made the most of every single opportunity that came your way and that you are now three years from today. Write (or type) a short story of living through a perfect ‘average’ day if you were ‘living the dream’.

Include where you wake up? Who with? What car do you drive? How many clients do you work with? How much are you earning? How do your clients feel receiving your products or services? What do you do in the afternoons? What do you do for fun? How do the people you know celebrate you? As you write this down, forget the world and let go, and have fun with it.

2. Bedtime Routine

Place this written piece of text next to your bed (possibly print and laminate it) and read it EVERY night before you go to sleep and every morning before you rise up out of bed.

You can also read more about bedtime routine here: Poor Sleep Quality Comes from All the Things You Do Since Morning

3. Powerful Action

In your diary, write down the three very most important actions that you are going to complete this week and when to begin powerfully moving you along your path to realizing this dream lifestyle.

Find out How Simply Jotting Down Ideas Can Make You Smarter.

4. Keep the Dream Alive

As you write these actions down, keep ‘alive’ the sensations you felt about what it will be like when you master this dream lifestyle and why you’re taking these actions each week. You MUST keep the reason ‘why’ you do what you do every day alive or you will lose motivation and go back to a sense of ‘sameness’ again.

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Read more to find out how to stay motivated when it’s difficult to reach your dreams: Pursuing Dreams is Like an Iceberg. Most People Only See the Tip of it.

5. Consistent Action

From now on and on a weekly basis – on Sunday evenings is great – write the next three very most important actions to take during the coming week.

The only way you will break out of a sense of ‘sameness’ and through the resistance to transform your life is if you work to become so inspired that you want to change. This exercise, if applied effectively, will enable this. All the people who have achieved great things did so by allowing themselves to dream really big yet then took consistent tiny, tiny daily actions.

Building habits is all about the small things you do consistently, here’s another article about How to Program Your Mind to Build the Habit You Want

If you apply this exercise, you will see results. You’ll see things beginning to shift, things beginning to move. This will empower you and before long you’ll begin to see your dream lifestyle begin to form before your eyes.

More by this author

Dan Warburton

Transformational Coach

My Secret for Overcoming Resistance and Transforming My Life

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Last Updated on April 19, 2021

The Art of Taking a Break So You Will Be Productive Again

The Art of Taking a Break So You Will Be Productive Again

Think of yourself as a cup. Each day, you wake up full. But as you go about your day—getting tasks done and interacting with people—the amount in your cup gradually gets lower. And as such, you get less and less effective at whatever it is you’re supposed to be doing. You’re running out of steam.

The solution is obvious: if you don’t have anything left to pour out, then you need to find a way to fill yourself up again. In work terms, that means you should take a break—an essential form of revitalizing your motivation and focus.

Taking a break may get a bad rap in hustle culture, but it’s an essential, science-based way to ensure you have the capacity to live your life the way you want to live it.

In the 1980s, when scientists began researching burnout, they described this inner capacity as “resources.” We all need to replenish our resources to cope with stress, work effectively, and avoid burnout.[1]

When the goal is to get things done, it may sound counterproductive to stop what you’re doing. But if you embrace the art of taking a break, you can be more efficient and effective at work.

Here are five ways on how you can take a break and boost your productivity.

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1. Break for the Right Amount of Time, at the Right Time

When I started my first job out of college, I was bent on pleasing my boss as most entry-level employees do. So, every day, I punched in at 9 AM on the dot, took a 60-minute lunch break at noon, and left no earlier than 5 PM.

As I’ve logged more hours in my career, I’ve realized the average, eight-hour workday with an hour lunch break simply isn’t realistic—especially if your goal is to put your best foot forward at work.

That’s why popular productivity techniques like the Pomodoro advocate for the “sprint” principle. Basically, you work for a short burst, then stop for a short, five-minute break. While the Pomodoro technique is a step forward, more recent research shows a shorter burst of working followed by a longer pause from work might actually be a more effective way to get the most out of stepping away from your desk.

The team at DeskTime analyzed more than 5 million records of how workers used their computers on the job. They found that the most productive people worked an average of 52 minutes, then took a 17-minute break afterward.[2]

What’s so special about those numbers? Leave it to neuroscience. According to researchers, the human brain naturally works in spurts of activity that last an hour. Then, it toggles to “low-activity mode.”[3]

Even so, keep in mind that whatever motivates you is the most effective method. It’s more about the premise—when you know you have a “finish line” approaching, you can stay focused on the task or project at hand.

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There are many applications and tools that can help you block distracting websites and apps (such as social media) for specific periods of the day. Similarly, you can also use some mailing apps like Mailbrew to receive all the social media content or newsletters you don’t want to miss in your inbox at a time you decide.

So, no matter how long you work, take a break when you sense you’re losing steam or getting bored with the task. Generally, a 10-15 minute break should reinvigorate you for whatever’s coming next.

2. Get a Change of Scenery—Ideally, Outdoors

When it comes to increasing a person’s overall mental health, there’s no better balm than nature. Research has found that simply being outside can restore a person’s mind from mental fatigue related to work or studying, ultimately contributing to improved work performance (and even improved work satisfaction).[4]

No lush forest around? Urban nature can be just as effective to get the most out of your break-taking. Scientists Stephen R. Kellert and Edward O. Wilson, in their book The Biophilia Hypothesis, claimed that even parks, outdoor paths, and building designs that embrace “urban nature” can lend a sense of calm and inspiration, encouraging learning and alertness for workers.

3. Move Your Body

A change of scenery can do wonders for your attention span and ability to focus, but it’s even more beneficial if you pair it with physical movement to pump up that adrenaline of yours. Simply put, your body wasn’t designed to be seated the entire day. In fact, scientists now believe that extended periods of sitting are just as dangerous to health as smoking.[5]

It’s not always feasible to enjoy the benefits of a 30-minute brisk walk during your workday, especially since you’ll most likely have less energy during workdays. But the good news is, for productivity purposes, you don’t have to. Researchers found that just 10 minutes of exercise can boost your memory and attention span throughout the entire day.[6]

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So, instead of using your break to sit and read the news or scroll your social media account, get out of your chair and move your body. Take a quick walk around the block. Do some jumping jacks in your home office. Whatever you choose, you’ll likely find yourself with a sharper focus—and more drive to get things done.

4. Connect With Another Person

Social connection is one of the most important factors for resilience. When we’re in a relationship with other people, it’s easier to cope with stress—and in my experience, getting social can also help to improve focus after a work break.

One of my favorite ways to break after a 30-or-so minute sprint is to hang out with my family. And once a week, I carve out time to Skype my relatives back in Turkey. It’s amazing how a bit of levity and emotional connection can rev me up for the next work sprint.

Now that most of us are working from home, getting some face-to-face time with a loved one isn’t as hard as it once was. So, take the time to chat with your partner. Take your kids outside to run around the backyard. If you live alone, call a friend or relative. Either way, coming up for air to chat with someone who knows and cares about you will leave you feeling invigorated and inspired.

5. Use Your Imagination

When you’re working with your head down, your brain has an ongoing agenda: get things done, and do it well. That can be an effective method for productivity, but it only lasts so long—especially because checking things off your to-do list isn’t the only ingredient to success at work. You also need innovation.

That’s why I prioritize a “brain break” every day. When I feel my “cup” getting empty, I usually choose another creative activity to exercise my brain, like a Crossword puzzle, Sudoku, or an unrelated, creative project in my house.

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And when I’m really struggling to focus, I don’t do anything at all. Instead, I let my brain roam free for a bit, following my thoughts down whatever trail they lead me. As it turns out, there’s a scientific benefit to daydreaming. It reinforces creativity and helps you feel more engaged with the world, which will only benefit you in your work.[7]

Whether you help your kids with their distance learning homework, read an inspiring book, or just sit quietly to enjoy some fresh air, your brain will benefit from an opportunity to think and feel without an agenda. And, if you’re anything like me, you might just come up with your next great idea when you aren’t even trying.

Final Thoughts

Most of us have to work hard for our families and ourselves. And the current world we live in demands the highest level of productivity that we can offer. However, we also have to take a break once in a while. We are humans, after all.

Learning the art of properly taking a break will not only give you the rest you need but also increase your productivity in the long run.

More on the Importance of Taking a Break

Featured photo credit: Helena Lopes via unsplash.com

Reference

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