Want to Get On with It?
Find Your Point of Least Resistance
Hey, have you figured out yet that it’s just resistance when you keep putting off what you say you want to do or what you think you should be doing? It really helps to know it as resistance. It helps to call it resistance. Otherwise, you have to call it lazy or lame. You might get into self-scolding or even self-loathing. And I bet you know that’ll never get you where you want to go. In fact, judging your resistance is more likely to increase it.
So what if, instead, you noticed the resistance and just got okay with it—human thing that it is, for human being that you are. What if you declared that you’re in no rush, you’ll get there in your own good time, and you’re simply going to head that way through your point of least resistance?
Ah, then you get to actively enjoy the binge-watching (and notice when it’s not fun anymore, because enjoying it means it’s not fraught with shame or misery that keeps you stuck there). Or you get to appreciate prioritizing the easy task, and move swiftly and surely through the ease of the simpler, more obvious, more joyous thing that must also be done. As you feel good about working with ease, you get to increase feeling good in general. And from that place of feeling good, and having had some guiltless fun or checked off a to-do or two that cost you little, you might take a (satisfied, can-do) breath and go for the harder thing.
I’m giving you three examples to illustrate the point of least resistance, so check out the one or ones you’re most drawn to. Example #1 targets the Enneagram’s self-preservation instinct (self-prez to Enneagram geeks): getting yourself to the gym. Example #2 correlates with the sexual instinct: working up to leaving the relationship, or agonizing over the belief it’s really time to go (but you don’t or can’t). Example #3 addresses the social instinct: wanting to rev up your connections or grow your circles. After reading your preferred example(s), drop down to the subhead “More implications of the point of least resistance.”
# 1: What if, instead of judging yourself for not getting to the gym, you welcomed yourself to the human race and considered how very many people struggle with how to work in working out? What if you stopped calling it lazy and instead took a look at the actual issue for you? This could lead you right to your point of least resistance. You might be inspired to get an accountability buddy, try a new modality that looks more fun or doable right now, or find a YouTube guide or a class. You might start simply walking or biking more to get from point A to point B. You might determine that a few good stretches could change how you feel in your body and start taking two-minute stretch breaks when that scrunched-up-at-the-desk sensation creeps in.
So much is possible! But not when you get trapped in resistance, and not when you see a point of least resistance but don’t grab it because you treat it like an evil (or at least believe that you’re wimping out, not doing it right, not doing enough).
# 2. What if, instead of forcing yourself to walk out of the relationship you suspect you’ve outgrown, or even forcing a stay-or-go decision, you located your point of least resistance? What if you gave yourself full permission to hang out there for a while and see what comes next? Your point of least resistance here could be about spending more time alone or with friends. It could involve making a pact (with your partner or yourself) to have fewer arguments (walk away at the first whiff!) and spend more time in appreciation or admiration, while putting aside stuff-to-work-out or what-to-do-next for a time. Or it could be working on passion and connection in every other realm of life while allowing, in the relationship realm, the relief of simplicity and neutrality (but not misery and criticism, at least on your end)—then you could see where that takes you.
# 3. What if, instead of telling yourself you’re hopeless at the social thing (as you wish for more of it), you told yourself that growing your connections is a good intention to hold and play with? There’s already less resistance in that. Then you might consider what feels manageable and aims you roughly in the right direction without some great overhaul of either character or habits. It could be going out to eat alone, even with a book or device for starters, or going to the movies solo or with a friend or partner and appreciating that others are about, having a similar experience. Or you might join a class so that you have a repeating experience of gathering with a fixed population on a shared point of interest in shared space. Your point of least resistance might even be an online group! It might involve self-permission to join something in silence, allowing yourself to begin by focusing on your inner experience. It might be to find a buddy to do something you’ve never done or want to do more of (salsa or karate? wine tastings or vegan cooking? choral singing or meditation?)—something that happens to be done with or among other human beings.
More implications of the point of least resistance
You won’t grow your social, sexual, or self-prez self from a place of feeling like you’re perpetually off your game (or like it’s a game you’re not remotely equipped to play). But you can grow any one of those by stepping from one point of least resistance to the next, and just see what gives as you allow yourself to step onward, curious about what’s possible, open to what reveals itself.
I cannot say enough about my love of the point of least resistance (and how much it’s helped my clients and program participants). It’s all about stepping in where it makes the most sense because it feels best and easiest and most aligned with where you are right now. This concept is super compatible with the idea of scooching (you may already know how much I love to Scooch!). The point of least resistance came to me through Abraham-Hicks, who teaches that it’s also your point of greatest alignment, most fun, and greatest joy. I keep playing with it and loving the experience and results. It’s so much kinder than all the forcing and straining or the judging and shutting down. I invite you to it (and you can learn about it in my beautiful and now beautifully cleaned-up and polished Expansion audio program).
Love and Blessings, Jaya
P.S. So much big news! Look right for more on these topics:
1. Enneagram workshop for womyn at Light on the Hill cottages in October!
2. More about the Expansion audio program.
3. My prices & coaching structures are getting an overhaul. Old prices & free exploration session good through Labor Day.
4. I'll be giving workshops at the Ohio Lesbian Festival this September!
I'll still give 30 minutes of free coaching with no strings attached through Labor Day. Click on button above to contact me, or just write firstname.lastname@example.org.
What's your point of least resistance? Maybe not dropping down from the top of the waterfall? Follow the pics down the column to get a clear look at the concept!
Want to go deeper with the Enneagram? I’ll be leading a retreat for womyn in the cottages (space is limited) at Light on the Hill Oct. 12-14: It’s called BEYOND CARICATURES: DEEPEN YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE ENNEAGRAM TO BETTER LOVE YOURSELF & OTHERS. Write me if you’re interested (email@example.com). Because I require participants to have a rudimentary understanding of their type, we’ll need to have a conversation!
If you’d like more to ponder on the point of least resistance, plus a bunch of other support and great food for thought on being your own best ally as you move into your personal expansion, my Expansion program is a 1:40 audio, gorgeously and newly edited for an easy listening experience (many joyful thanks to Ithaca's Bob Hutko), and includes an optional piece of homework*** that teaches you how to talk yourself through: first you write a script based on a template (takes 10-20 minutes), then I send you a custom-made audio all for you based on what you send me.
***subliminal message: do the homework! you’ll love it!
It's officially called Walk Yourself through the Expansion. Want to learn how to walk yourself through anything with great kindness and generosity to self? Want to feel good more often and proceed much more easily through whatever you choose to step into (never mind the hard stuff) by accessing each next point of least resistance? That's what this is about.
The program costs only $39. It’s worth at least two coaching sessions, plus you have it to refer back to. It's so worth your time for many reasons, including that the simple homework piece, once sent to me, gets you back an audio that takes what you did and builds on it. It shows you in the clearest and most specific-to-you way exactly how you might talk to yourself (this goes way beyond affirmations) to encourage yourself in a kind, real, no-bullshit, extremely self-honoring and -supportive manner. I invite you to it.
It's true that my coaching structures and fees are about to change—quite drastically for the former. If you want the old set-up and prices (including first 4 one-hour sessions for $399 or 8 30-minute sessions for $499, both including email exchanges for session takeaways and optional check-ins in between), act now. After Labor Day, it'll be the new era.
I'm also going to drop the free exploration session as I've been doing it (available to anyone, no strings attached). I'll be giving it to people who buy the Expansion program and do the homework, for these reasons: it packs in a whole lot more than I can give in 30 minutes; it still involves individual attention (see homework); it shows me you're willing to show up for your own process; and it'll make clear to you whether you're interested in exploring one-on-one coaching with me. With that in place, I'll give a free consultation to talk about what that work might look like.
Anyone thinking about attending the Ohio Lesbian Festival ("All Womyn Welcome, Always!") this year (Sept. 20-23)? It'll be my first time ever, and my first festival since I taught at the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival during its last gathering in 2015. I'll be leading workshops on Saturday 22 and Sunday 23: Get Over Her! and Everyday Magic.