By in Other Therapies

“Where There’s a Will, There’s a Way” Or is There?

It is a popular saying. It asks us to buckle up, gather our strength and push through whatever difficulty we are facing. 

Sometimes it helps, sometimes all we need is to regroup, remember our determination and push through a bit of difficulty. It can be a great thing to access our inner power. However, there are actually many times when this approach will not work and we end up exhausted and ashamed of our weakness.

Who has not experienced this at some point or another? We face difficulty. We really want to achieve something. We try really hard and yet fail miserably. We come to the conclusion that it’s just too hard somehow, but if it is true that there is a way if there is a will, my failing has to therefore mean that I do not have the will, I am weak, I am a failure, I do not deserve to achieve my goal. And the spiral goes on. 

The problem with this willpower strategy is that it really does require a lot of effort. The question that often is not asked is: “Why do I find it so hard to achieve or sustain this goal?”  or “What inside of us is protesting?” 

If I can’t lose weight if I just can’t get into a daily meditation practice etc, what is stopping me?

If I simply go with willpower to solve this problem it is a bit like putting the foot on the gas and on the brake at the same time. It is exhausting and I am getting nowhere. This is not sustainable.

I am curious about the foot on the brake pedal. Our will, our drive, our strength and our ambition are powerful allies, but we may have to also listen to the inner protesters. Often I hear people talk about their inner resistances as though they are just laziness, or a part of them that really just likes to sabotage them, or it’s inner exhaustion or pain that is simply an inconvenience and needs to be worked around somehow or gotten rid of.

The million-dollar question is, what do these protesters need? What do they want for you? If they stop you from moving forward in the way you wish, what is missing from your goal that they need for you? Is it comfort? Rest? Fun? Safety?

If we understand this we can bring the inner protesters onto our side and move forward with them supporting us, rather than fighting us. We will need much less willpower and force.

Somatic Parts work can be a great way to learn more about our inner protesters. We can literally look inwards and wonder what part of me is sabotaging me? Does it have a voice? Does it have a place in my body? Does it have a certain posture? What is it afraid of? What does it want? Let’s have a conversation about this part. 

When we dismiss this part as something inside of us that is just tripping us up for no reason, we dismiss a part of us that actually is working really hard to keep us safe and well. Ultimately everything inside of us wants the best for us. It really can look like the opposite is true because these parts of us do not see the full picture and they may well make us do things that harm us. But deep down there is a motivation that comes from a place of wanting the best for us. So it is important that we start having this conversation with this part. It is not about telling it what we want, or that it is wrong. It is about listening to these parts and being open to them. Allowing them to speak to you oftentimes already reduces the intensity at which they shout at you and therefore the intensity of the resistances you feel. Ultimately we want to really work out what it is these parts want to do for you so that we can work out a way in which we can move forward towards our goal while also making sure that we have found a different, more useful way of giving ourselves what these protesting parts wanted for us. 

If we can do that, we may find that what we have been battling to achieve for so long suddenly just comes easy to us. This can be a truly magical experience. So by all means get in touch with your inner strength and allow all of your parts to contribute to it.  

If you would like to explore somatic parts work (somatic experiencing) to achieve your goals you can contact Kristin at The Body Matters on 01702 714968.

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