I want to share a story with you. It is the story of how I resolved my resistance to commitment.
I wrestled with whether I should just share the end results or if I should tell the whole story, the latter being the more vulnerable winding path. I have settled on sharing the whole story with you. Though it is the scarier of the two options for me, there is something that can only be shared through the retelling of my experience that would be lost in merely sharing the revelations. So, we begin:
Recently, I was feeling a deep resistance to commitment. I wanted to work on my art and my business but I kept feeling myself unable to fully commit. I found distraction and excuse after distraction and excuse. I decided to use one of my tools in my emotional tool box and get to the bottom of my resistance.
The tool I chose was parts work. For those of you who don’t know what parts work is, it is a practice where you fully embody different aspects of your consciousness to get to know them and learn about what they need and why. It is a highly interactive process. This means that often times you will get visuals or be taken to internal environments that are quite dream like. These realms will often trigger physical sensations and intense emotions. This process is truly amazing when working with resistance or any time when you get the feeling of being torn. Doing it with a partner is best, but I decided to do it by myself. As a side not, going forward, when I refer to the “center consciousness” I am referring to the one who is holding the space, the facilitator and the conscious mind.
In order to begin the process, I sat on my bed and I asked to become the aspect of me that was in resistance to commitment. The part that filled my body was a little boy that was surrounded by swinging axes. If he stepped in any direction, committed to anything, his hand or foot would be chopped off by one of the axes.
He quickly vacillated between rage and powerlessness. After a few minutes of being with these emotions and releasing them through tears and quiet screams, the feeling slowly settled into discouragement. This aspect was completely discouraged. Any choice he had made or idea he had put out there, the flaws and impossibility of what he wanted were shoved in his face. I had flashes of memories of my physical life with people and events when this happened. I saw these memories securing the axes around the little boy. This was such a painful state, not even able to try because someone else already “knew” that it wasn’t going to work.
I understood that there had to be another part maintaining this environment as well, a part opposite this little boy, for it was obvious that the little boy did not hang the axes himself. I wanted to become the aspect opposite of this little boy. I stepped into the center consciousness, and I asked to become the part opposite of the boy.
The aspect that stepped forward was a huge burly man. This man was the one discouraging the boy from everything in his life. The reason was because the burly man didn’t want this boy to experience failure and the immense amounts of pain that it would cause. Failure was something too painful to experience. He felt that keeping the little boy from doing anything would keep him away from failure. The center consciousness pointed out that keeping the little boy from failure was also keeping him from success, his joy. No movement meant no movement towards anything either positive or negative.
Because of this forced stasis and constant discouragement, the burly man was keeping the little boy in constant pain. When told this, the burly man didn’t care about the little boy’s current pain, because it was better than experiencing the pain of failure. However, what the burly man had not realized was that by keeping the boy in stasis and in pain, he was condemning that boy to a painful life forever. This revelation brought the burly man into a moment of crisis. How could he be keeping the little boy in a life of pain if that was the opposite of his intention? It was also revealed, the reason the burly man cared so much about the little boy’s potential failure was because the burly man felt the pain of the little boy.
With the realization that the little boy’s constant pain, accompanied by the acknowledgment that the little boy’s pain was the burly man’s pain, the burly man understood the constant feelings of discouragement and powerlessness were also his feelings and his pain. This was an awareness he had not had before since his focus had solely been avoiding failure. The only way out of this constant pain was to allow for the possibility of success, and this meant to allow the little boy to move, to commit to something. Even if there was a possibility for failure and pain, allowing the boy to commit opened the door for success. The burly man felt that this was appropriate and felt deeply uncertain about what to do and his role moving forward. As I was fully present with the burly man and his uncertainty, I slowly felt this melting starting to happen in my body. The aspect of the burly man melted off of me into the floor and into the earth. He was gone.
Immediately after, I felt a warm sensation start to move up my feet into my legs and it spread through out my whole body. This aspect introduced herself, and started to speak. I came to learn that she was the aspect that wanted to flow throughout her day. She did want to be forced into a structure that felt bad for her.
She was tired of having to step out of her flow in order to do something that she didn’t want to do but rather felt like she had to do. I suggested maybe setting up containers of time to help so that she may flow through her day and then have set times for her to do the things that were against her flow. That wasn’t quite the right option. Spontaneously, I felt the little boy, who had now shifted into commitment, starting to come closer to her. She felt her flow being appropriately directed by his commitment. She realized that the way she was flowing before wasn’t being “productive” or wasn’t moving her where she wanted because there was no direction to where she was flowing. Commitment gave her flow direction, like that banks of a fast moving river, and thus put her in purposeful and conscious creation. This felt really good to her. However, she was still afraid that if something in this flow started to feel bad, she had some resistance to it, that it wouldn’t be recognized and her fears would be bull dozed. She would be forced to be in pain with no action taken to remedy her suffering.
This brought in a fourth aspect. Out of the aspects that had been canvased thus far, he sat closest to the conscious mind. He was the one that dealt with the direct interfacing and decision making in daily life. He wanted to make the commitment to her that whenever he noticed that she was feeling resistance, he would immediately stop and listen to what she had to say. The interfacer knew the importance of her resistance. Her feelings of resistance and reasons behind them, once given the time to be fully expressed, would potentially alter the nature of the commitment entirely or may alter the nature of her flow.
These alterations however couldn’t occur until her resistance was fully canvased, and this takes time. The interfacer’s fear was that he might be put in a position where he might have to choose immediately without having the time to canvas her resistance. He asked for permission to be able to do this if needed. She gave a firm no. The reason for this was because the minute he bulldozed her feelings of resistance, she would lose trust in him immediately and she would never trust him to have her best interests at heart. How could she trust someone who would willing ignore her pain and intentionally keep her suffering? What this meant is that if the interfacer continued to bulldoze her, self-trust would be impossible for me to develop. (If one has an internal part that does not trust another part then you cannot say that you trust yourself. It is only when one’s internal parts trust each other, can you say that you have developed self-trust.)
In order to help bring these two into resolution, the center consciousness spoke and noted that the interfacer and the one who flows in fact share the same body and that they are not separate beings. Her pain was his pain, just has his pain was her pain. That flipped the interfacer immediately. All of sudden, he became deeply attracted to her and understood her beauty. She is the key to the path of creation.
He must always be engaging with her, and most importantly, he must be engaging with her when her resistance is small. Then the decisions that require immediacy will be ones of less turmoil and resistance because the interfacer and the one who flows will be working together to remain in alignment daily. The one who flows immediately became calm. She felt the interfacer’s shift. She felt his commitment to her and his energy pouring into her. His commitment was true. She opened to receive his energy and wanted to begin build trust with him. To end their session together, I closed my eyes and I felt as if these knots were being tied in each one of my chakras, starting in the root chakra working its way up to the crown. Their bond had been re-established and they were reuniting in my body.