I feel it when I sit down to meditate each morning (something I’ve been able to maintain for almost a month now!) My mind does anything it can to get away from just being still for 20 minutes. I think about the things I have to do that day or the things I did yesterday. I have imaginary conversations, sometimes over and over. I nod off. I glance down at the timer on my phone, wondering how much longer I’ve got to go.

I realized I do the same thing with writing, and how strange that is. These two things that I love, that I have struggled to make a regular part of my life, and when I sit down to do them: my mind runs.

I currently have 5 different tabs open on my laptop. There is a grader sitting outside on the street, idling, and it’s bothering me. I check Instagram on my phone to see if anyone liked the picture I just posted. I text my partner. Even this blog post feels like avoidance of the chapbook manuscript I intend to edit this morning.

We all do this, I know. Maybe it’s that the distractions are safe and easy. Like I’m not going to fuck up my internet browsing, right? But I could really do some damage with that manuscript…and then there’s all the rejection I might face when I try to put it out there.

Moving through it, through the fear and the resistance, is hard. But my morning meditation sessions, where I just sit on the cushion through all of it and stubbornly keep coming back to my breath, help prepare me for all the pushing away I do through the rest of the day. I know this feeling, so strong it’s a physical skin crawl, shoulders shudder feeling. I know I won’t die if I just sit it out, just keep coming back to the page, over and over.

What are you resisting these days, and how do you manage to come back?

9 thoughts on “Resistance”

  1. Currently resisting too much to say.
    Resisting yoga because I’m out of practice and tight and weird.
    Resisting editing because it’s all terrible anyway.
    Resisting sending things out because it’s just time and money to lead to rejection.

    But trying anyway. Reading mindful text about Buddhism and Taoism.
    Trying to figure out how to incorporate all that these zen, chill people are saying and trying(!) not to mutter rude things about how they’re not women raising small boys who yell and throw and stomp and pee on the floor (on accident).
    Trying to meditate for even a few minutes each day.
    Trying to pick up my mandolin every day and figure out how this whole strumming chords business works after a lifetime of intermittently playing viola and cello with sheet music and a bow.
    Trying to take a breath before I speak or act.

    I think we’re on similar wavelengths, you and I.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I really think we are on similar wavelengths! Keep trying. And as for sending out your writing…I’m just finishing up a course on revision and the final lesson was basically all about how the world needs your voice. There is a reader out there somewhere who needs your words. Keep trying! xo


  2. Right now I’m drinking coffee and resisting the fact I have a whole day of kids in school (so long as they both wake up and are willing) and so should be deep diving into my memoir revision and feeling a kind of stuck in the mud, what’s-the-point feeling and wondering what else to do instead? But like the lovely commenter said before me, and you as well, I’ll keep trying regardless.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Such familiar feelings! I’ve been consciously dialing down distraction–mostly b/c my brain doesn’t have the bandwidth. Facebook-free for over two weeks now, and it’s really helped. I’m taking a wee break from writing a research paper, and instead of scrolling mindlessly, I’ve paused here to read your lovely post. Deadlines and grades have cured my resistance, though the writing I’m doing is not creative. I hope to blog soon about applying these structures to my own writing–if I can eke out any time for it!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. “Maybe it’s that the distractions are safe and easy. Like I’m not going to fuck up my internet browsing, right?” OMG, SO TRUE.

    “What are you resisting?” is such a good prompt. I’ve been resisting prioritizing. It’s so much easier to go with the demands that continuously pop up than it is to work with intention and make conscious decisions about what to prioritize.


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