Resistance (Part 4)
In this series on resistance I hope that it is clear that one of the biggest obstacles to accomplishing change comes from the person that looks at you in the mirror.
Today, we are going to look at how resistance hits toward the end. You made it through your fear by starting, you made it through doubt by getting on purpose and adding discipline to your life, but now something new and surprising happens: Doubt.
Doubt keeps you from completing things. It is the difference between writing a book and publishing a book.
Doubt may show up as perfectionism. Not wanting anyone to know you aren’t perfect and so the project is never completed. It always needs just a bit more time before it is ready. Doubt is that voice that whispers, “You are a fraud,” or “Who did you think you were for trying to do such a big thing?” And so nothing ever ships unless an outside force, like a boss, requires it and even then, we’re ready with the defensive answer, “I told you it wasn’t ready.”
If you come to our parenting seminars, you will hear a detailed presentation on the goals of parenting. We summarize them as responsible, respectable, able to handle risk appropriately (RRR’s), and to be dependent on God in all the right ways. We also show that as the child moves from birth to adulthood, the child’s responsibility increases while the parent’s responsibility decreases.
A parent that doubts their ability to train their kids in the RRR’s will tend to not allow their kids to be in the position in which the child truly has the chance to be responsible, respectable or handle risk. The parent is still saying, “Give me some more time,” but in reality, time is a cruel boss that doesn’t wait. Children are eventually tested and parents that don’t transfer responsibility to their kids typically suffer immensely.
Another thing that happens is that parents that are perfectionistic miss celebrations. They are so intent on raising the child that accomplishments along the way go unnoticed. Kids many times give up on receiving the encouragement from their parents and find other sources for their affirmation.
So when you start feeling doubt, perfectionism, or aren’t sure you are done, it is a good time to identify what you are feeling as resistance and take the time to remind yourself what your goals were in the first place.
Simply getting your family to the table at the same time is something to celebrate. Make sure to realize that before insisting on pleasant conversation. Getting your child to turn in assignments is a great accomplishment and should be celebrated even before grades come out. Doubt will take away these little parties but remembering your goal will bring them back to life.
Remembering your goals will also give you a chance to realize that finishing well is just as important as starting. It provides a chance not only to celebrate but to validate and set new expectations.
What is something that you have felt doubt about finishing and what have you found helpful in getting through it?