Posts Tagged: wall

Jul 11

Strength in the Struggle


Wow, as I poke at this word resistance, it continues to take on a variety of shapes and meanings.

In the last blog entry I talked about having resistance to forces that are trying to shape and mold us.  Today we take a look at resistance from the opposite direction.  The resistance we are faced with and feel when we are trying to advance or move forward.


. . I was introduced to a book called The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.   It is a very interesting read.

Although this book initially targeted creative types who struggle with the blocks that hinder the creative process, the simple universal truths apply to every aspect of our lives.



Pressfield spends a significant portion of the book on the reality of and the struggles we face in life with the constant force of resistance.

The reality is, life has a natural headwind.  Any meaningful movement faces opposition.  Pressfield writes…

“Resistance cannot be seen, touched, heard, or smelled.  But it can be felt.  It’s a repelling force.  It’s negative.  Its aim is to shove us away, distract us, prevent us from doing our work.” (page 7)


How true.  I feel resistance every time I write this blog.

I have come to accept that resistance is the nature of life.  I heard someone say one time that the only trouble with life is that it is so constant.

The more powerful reality is that the resistance is felt when moving forward … especially anything noble or good.  It is nice to have this belief validated in The War of Art.

Pressfield says that resistance comes when…

“…any act that rejects immediate gratification in favor of long-term growth, health, or integrity.  Or, expressed another way, any act that derives from our higher nature instead of our lower.  Any  of these will elicit resistance.” (page 6)


“Resistance obstructs movement only from a lower sphere to a higher.  It kicks in when we seek to pursue a calling in the arts, launch an innovative enterprise, or evolve to a higher station morally, ethically, or spiritually.” (page 17)


Yes, moving forward can be tiring.  But oh the amazing things you see and experience.

This blog was started on the premise that we are made to move… journey.  We are not made to sit, atrophy and rust.  Yes, that is the easier path.  It is downhill and you have tailwinds to make it even more effortless.

I started this blog journey by talking about hearing a voice (no, not the kind of voice you need medications for). A voice beyond where I was, started calling me to more.  I scaled the comfortable walls I had built… peeked over the top … and saw things to do and territory to take.

Nope, it hasn’t been easy.  But when you begin to move, something is released that makes it all worth while.

I don’t know where you currently feel resistance, but you can be assured the resistance is a signal that you’re moving in the right direction.

On Monday I plan on talking about the other alternative… taking the path of least resistance.


Mar 10

The Cliff

Can you believe it… blog entry #19.  I keep plugging along trying to figure out what to write.  Hopefully it has been helpful to my friends keeping me company, or at least somewhat entertaining.

Our meandering up this mountain hasn’t been too difficult so far and fairly uneventful (except for the cussing spell I had about eight blogs back).

But today is a bit different.  I have started this blog at least five times.  It is a challenge because I am allowing myself to think too much about what you think.

Side Note: For those of you who are new, in blog #3 (Titled:  “The Wall”) I talked about the walls that have kept me trapped.  The main wall I shared is worrying what people think.

So I have to publicly put it in its place again… this blog is for me.  I know you know this but I am saying this for me.  Worrying what people think makes me second guess everything I write.

The truth is, you too need to periodically put things in their place.  The things that have kept you moored to the shore of self preventing you from exploring the vast sea of the unknown.

We all have to do this to assure ourselves a journey that has meaning and reward.

Everyone has these walls that resurface after you have made a decision to move forward.  Don’t be discouraged.

Important Truth:

“You can’t have a breakthrough until you have a breakwith”

- Stephen Covey

So we breakwith again.  And that’s ok.  A few years ago I would have been pretty hard on myself because I had a set back.  Nope, not now.  I don’t care if I have to breakwith every week.  The mountain is mine to climb.  And that’s a good feeling.

For me, a time like this is the part of journey up the mountain where we encounter the sheer face… straight up.   The casual stroll we all enjoy is not in sight.

A few years ago I learned something that has served me well in times like this.  I had an opportunity to go on a 10 day wilderness experience.  One day we spent rock climbing.  Like most life changing learnings it came in the most unexpected way.

I was really nervous climbing the cliff.  Yes, I was harnessed and the ropes safe in the hands of my belayer.  But while climbing the cliff every fiber of my being was screaming at me to HUG THE ROCKS.” My natural instinct was to pull close to the rocks.

But for climbing that is the worst thing to do.  What you must do is counter-intuitive.  Once you have a hand hold and your foot positioned you push your body away from the sheer wall.

The physics are apparent… when the core of your body is away from the face of the wall the weight is forced into the wall through your legs for a better grip.  Conversely, the closer you are to the wall the weight is focused straight down.

The physics may be apparent to some but it was idiocy to my mind.

But this principle is true with most things.  There are times you cannot trust your thinking.  What you must do is counter-intuitive.

For some, joining me on this journey is a big risk.  Push away from the wall… it will make it much easier.

See you later.

Jan 10

The Wall

Hi there… welcome back.

I hate to start off with bad news and be somewhat discouraging but…  we haven’t even started yet and we have our first challenge… the wall.

I finally decide to go on this adventure of discovery and wouldn’t you know, I ran smack dab into the garden wall.  Yep, and I hit it hard.  Bruised myself up a bit.

Facts about walls:

  1. They hurt when you bump into them.
  2. Everyone has them.
  3. Walls are not accidents.  Walls are intentional… built for a purpose.  They are created to keep things in or to keep things out.
  4. Here’s the scary one.  If not careful, the garden walls intended for good (protect and defend) subtly transform into the walls that trap rather than protect.  Without our knowledge we become imprisoned and we don’t realize our fate until we try to step beyond the parameter.
  5. You don’t go over or around walls… you go through them (more about that at another time).

Making the decision to step beyond the safety of the familiar is one thing, but actually taking a few steps is another.  I wrote the first two blog entries over five weeks ago and POW – I hit my wall.  The idea was to get six to ten blog entries in queue, release them on a schedule and this would allow me to get in a rhythm of writing.  Good plan huh?

What I didn’t plan on was my progress being hindered by the very walls I mentioned in the last blog entry… “what will people think?  will this be interesting? etc. etc. ad nausium.

It was easy to use the excuses such as the time consuming discipline needed to write and the commitment required to launch an ongoing blog.  Good excuses but in reality, it was the putting of my self at risk which stopped me.  I was rationalizing.

My definition of RATIONALIZE:  Rational Lies

But thank goodness, through the malaise the persistent soft piercing voice from beyond the wall (blog # 1) broke through.  I came to the realization that the fear of losing out on what is awaiting me is greater than the fear of the prison wall of what people think.  That is an awesome point of awareness.

Side Note:  Fear is an interesting paradox.  There is fear that debilitates and fear that motivates.  If not careful, fear becomes a seductive voice for non-action.

I bounced around in the confines of the wall far too long in my life.  Now that I am finally getting through my wall we can now proceed.

Ooops, I forgot… what about your walls?  Have you addressed the walls you have?

You can still walk along if you like but you’ll never really get to where you are going until you deal with your walls.  I don’t know the answer for you but I do know what I needed to do.  I needed to finally identify them for what they are.   A point of “Marking the Wall”.

This is what I needed to do.  If you are daring, I encourage you to mark your wall.  You can do it any way you want but you might want to consider posting it on the blog.  No one knows you… so think about it.

Rest well.  You’ll need it this Thursday for the next step of the journey.

Jan 10

A bottle in the ocean

My first blog entry.  Weird.

I kinda feel like an obscure speck somewhere in the universe putting a message in a bottle and throwing it into the cyber sea and wondering if anyone on a distant shore will by chance catch a glimpse of it and read the scribbled message.

Apparently you have happened upon this bottle and have read this far.  What now?  You can casually toss it to the side and continue cyber surfing or does something stir your curiosity.

Something intriguing that stays your attention.

Side Note*

Have you ever noticed how odd it is that for no apparent reason something seemingly ordinary stirs something below the surface?  It touches and moves you and we don’t know why.  We sense it and we tilt our head like a dog hearing a strange noise.

Pay attention.  It’s a gift.  Hopefully the mystery draws you to explore.

*Side notes are just random thoughts that hit me in mid sentence.  So I’ll throw them in.

Back to the cyber bottle… You may be wondering about the person on the other end of the message.  Who is this lost soul in cyber space?

Well… I’m just an ordinary guy.  Nothing too special… I’m a nice person, pretty good sense of humor (albeit weird) and insecure enough to worry too much about what people think.  I feel deeply, laugh freely, and usually keep a lot inside.  Don’t ask me why, I don’t really know… I just do.

I’m getting ready for a journey.  This is not your typical trip with suitcases, tourist brochures and cheesy sunglasses.  The journey is into the unknown, beyond the self I know and this blog is primarily the vehicle.

The journey is beyond the safe confines of the walled garden of self.  The familiar, safe, cozy world I live in.  But my comfortable world has been disturbed.  Something (or someone) is calling from beyond the wall.  My head is tilted and my curiosity peaked.

I’m not sure where I’m going.  I’m just going.  All I know is that I’m supposed to go on this walk.  Don’t ask me how I know… I just know.

The stir has been deep.  Something inside wanting out.  Not aggressive… more restless.   Something slowly waking up and beginning to poke at the confines of it’s environment.  Like someone cautiously pushing on a wall in a creepy old house to determine the strength and stability.

Feeling stirred is a gift.  There is a difference between being stirred and being troubled about something.  Invite the stirring to occur.  Let it grow, let it take shape, let it push and struggle its way to the surface.  It has to come out from within; I cannot get to it from the outside.  All I can do is nurture, invite and remove the obvious barriers that limit.

All I know is that something is stirring… and that’s a good thing.

The stirring has been the catalyst for this journey.  Anyone want to join me?  It would be nice to have company but I’m content going it alone.

Maybe your first step is to tag along for a while to see what it’s about.  Maybe you’ll just pop in every now and then to see where I am.  That’s ok too.  Whatever you decide to do is fine with me.

I want to ask… have you been feeling something begin to stir from the depths?  If so, I encourage you to be a bit adventurous.

Maybe I’ll see you on Thursday.  Ciao.