Madeleine Eames

- Psychotherapist
- Mindfulness Teacher

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Resistance is futile: Accept your experience

“When we argue with reality, we lose, but only 100% of the time” Byron Katie

 

How many times have you gone over and over something in your head that has already happened? How much time and energy has been spent on reliving something that “shouldn’t have happened”, but, in fact, did.  Or, perhaps there is a feeling you are experiencing, for whatever reason, that you “shouldn’t be feeling”.

Whenever we find we are feeling stressed, there is usually some part of us that is NOT ok with what IS happening. “Accepting our experience as it is” means just that; accepting our experience in the moment. If we are feeling frustrated, angry, or sad, accept that feeling. Don’t resist it, or wish it weren’t there; but let it in, become interested in how it feels. Many people have come to me as a therapist and said “I don’t want this feeling…”. I understand that, but creating resistance to it blocks the wealth of information that it might provide, and, ultimately, the healing that follows. My experience has been that the more we are able to just accept what is, the power of resistance subsides and somehow the feelings can then dissolve.

Often when discussing acceptance, people will ask ” But if I just let things be, am I accepting injustice, cruelty, my own depression.. isn’t it like giving up?” On the contrary, there are many situations that we should not tolerate, and each, in our own way, will be called to do what we can to improve things. But accepting what is, is always the first step. For example, one doesn’t leave an abusive situation until you can see that it is abusive.

From the starting point of acceptance (we don’t have to like it!) we can see more accurately and have an empowered response whether it is an action, forgiveness, letting go, or speaking up.  If there is no required response, then let it be…. it already is.

Think of something you are presently arguing with. Has it already happened? Is it already here? Ok, try letting it be and now see what your response is.

 

“What could be more futile, more insane, than to create inner resistance to something that already is?”
Eckhart Tolle

 

 

 

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