Weekly Practice 32

Every week we profile one of the “Reflect to Create! “ practices from my book, they are chosen at random from a jar on my desk.  My invitation is for you to try it out if it speaks to you in some way.

Photo by Daniele Levis Pelusi on Unsplash


This week we are profiling Practice 164: Exercise: Greeting Resistance (from page 250 of my book).

Practice 164 is one of the dance steps from The Denouement’s Working Wisely.

Working Wisely means making wise choices – and being held responsible and accountable for those choices – which are in service of you, your clients and your systems. Working Wisely means paying attention to the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ of making change happen which requires you to hold the system in mind as you test your ideas and options. 

This week I wanted to revisit my own relationship to resistance. I am resisting some bad news right now ….. and so I am asking myself how is my resistance showing up and how can I better flow with a new reality?

Resisting resistance creates an ‘either/or’ rather than an ‘and’ mentality. Resistance is some form of feedback from the system, which is trying to tell us something. Working Wisely is accepting that this something is often some piece of data which we need to pay attention to and work with in some way. 

When we encounter resistance we can either ignore, fight or greet it. Martial arts traditions teach how we can lean into an oncoming threat, join its energy and soften, work with it or redirect it.

In Aikido, attacks are not resisted but embraced. The person being attacked (or Nage –pronounced ‘nah-gay’) does not defend in the usual sense by blocking and striking back against the person offering the attack (Uke, pronounced ‘ooh-kay’). Instead, Nage receives the attack as a gift of energy. Nage moves into Uke’s space, blending with the attack energy to soften its power to harm. These moves can be illustrated by the experience of a rider jumping on a runaway horse. The rider rides the horse until the rider is at one with the horse’s energy, which then enables the rider to redirect that energy.

For this practice:

  • Consider what Aikido could teach you. How counter-initiative is this for you?
  • Reflect on three actual scenarios where you ignored, fought and greeted resistance. What happened? What could have been different?
  • Journal your insights and reflections.

Have a go! 

Start with small steps.

Please do share your stories so we can all learn together.

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