Getting A Grip: What You Resist Persists

By Nicole Beasley

Updated January 11, 2019

Reviewer Aaron Dutil

Are you ready to make some changes in your life? Many people decide to make new year's resolutions at the start of every new year. Some are more successful than others at making these changes last. However, everyone can commit to change anytime of the year. It's normal to resist change, very few people look forward to making life changes. Sometimes, people want to make a few simple behavioral changes and other people want to commit to dramatic, sweeping life transitions.

Yet many people don't know where to start. Perhaps they have a vague idea in terms of the change they want to make in their lives but are unsure how to go about this change. If you find yourself thinking about making some positive changes or completing some goals this year but are finding it difficult about how to go about it and resisting possible change, here are a few ideas.


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Channeling Your Inspiration

Creating a special space that reminds you of what's important and what you are working towards can lend itself to improve your daily outlook and modify your behavior is a positive way. We give power to the things that we focus on, as the more we bring a concept, feeling, or reaction to the forefront of our emotional toolboxes, the more our brains will be most likely choose that particular reaction in the future. Creating a photo collage of previous experiences can help motivate you to change or complete your long-term goals.

It may be only a simple collage of things that interest you, such as photos of places, people or things that you love but it can be a powerful tool of change. Fill your collage full of things that bring positive emotions into your day when you look at them. They say that what you resist persists, but there is an argument to be made that what you focus on is truly what persists. A photo collage of people you have met or love and places you have visited can help keep you motivated when you feel like resisting those positive changes you want to make.

Another great way of channeling your inspiration is to write in a journal. Journaling is a time honored technique used in counseling. Daily journaling is a great way to focus and clarify your goals. Journaling allows people to truly examine their thoughts and feelings about their lives. It will allows the writer to look at every potential option before settling on a course of action.

Once a course of action for change has been decided upon, journaling allows people to track their progress, as well as any road blocks along the way. Journaling allows people to hold themselves accountable for moving forward. If a goal is very complex, it can help the writer prioritize and decide a rational course of action. Daily journaling will help create discipline which can assist in making your inspiration a reality.

Bringing Your Dreams to Life

Can you see yourself completing your personal goals this year? A good daily habit is to visualize yourself completing your goals or changing your behavior. By using mental imagery to imagine ourselves completing our goals, we enhance the chance of success. Visualization is something that we all do instinctively and spontaneously. Unfortunately, many people tend to focus on visualizing negative events happening to them.

However, we can learn to visualize positive things happening to us as well and if we commit to this daily, it will become a habit. Maintaining and inspiring confidence by replaying previous successes and recalling the feelings associated with them is the root concept for this application as well. It's essentially a method of rehearsing your approach and strategy for a situation, as well as filling you with a personal drive as you tap into the things that make you glad to be alive and want to change. You must believe that the outcome you want is possible!

Making a Vision Board


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Rather than only focusing on ambiguous goals that you want to complete at some point, it helps to focus on isolating and identifying things that inspire feelings, allowing them to permeate your life. The whole purpose of this is to create personal motivation. A great way to bring these inspirational feelings to life is through the use of a vision board. People who create vision boards tend to have an easier time making their goals become reality.

A great way to start this process of creating a vision board is to first set your intention. What is it you really want or perhaps value? Start by thinking about the areas in your life which could use attention, such as health, finances, relationships, home organization, travel aspirations, and other areas of personal growth.

Once an intention has been set, start gathering materials. You will need something to attach the images on, such as a poster board or art book. After you have selected where you will place the images on, begin collecting magazines, books and other items that you can cut up. Begin selecting images from these various periodicals and use scissors to cut out those images that reflect your goals. Use glue to paste them in your board or on your poster board. You can personalize your vision board even more through decorating it with markers and colored pencils. Sometimes, it helps to write inspiration quotes as well.

What You Resist Persists, So Tell Someone

Take inventory of what you want out of your life, work on identifying this and putting it into words. Writing down your goals by hand can be a way of focusing your mental energy but so does telling other people. Getting an outside perspective may give you a new lease on your circumstances, opening your eyes to potential areas of improvement that you had not even thought about before. Although introverts prefer to write down their goals, extroverts tend to prefer to tell others about their goals and desire for change. Extroverts like to interact with others and learn their opinion.


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Also, when we tell someone about our struggles and what we want to change, we now have someone who can hold us accountable and be an ally. Mental health professionals are trained to be on the lookout for individuals who are ready to make these changes. They can hold people accountable for resisting change when someone stops working on their goals. These professionals can help people find maximum inspiration and energy to create positive change in their lives. Whichever method you prefer (writing down versus verbally expressing goals) having a professional who is willing to hold you accountable for reaching your goals is a powerful collaborator.

BetterHelp is an online counseling resource created with the aim of connecting more people to affordable and convenient mental health care, aspiring to reduce the stigma many people feel when seeking initial care. Speaking with an expert can yield insight into the areas of your life that could most benefit from making positive changes.


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