Remove the Blocks to Change,
Set Yourself Free

On the path to self improvement you may encounter blocks to change which seem insurmountable. As you repeatedly try to move past the resistance it can feel like you are banging your head against a stone wall.

When this happens it means there is a conflict between what you say you want (conscious mind) and what you really want deep down (unconscious mind). The worst of it is, you can THINK that all of your energies are moving in one direction (because of course you want to be confident, abundant, healthy and happy) but they are not.

This article is about getting all of your energies, both conscious and unconscious, moving in the same direction so there is no longer a conflict blocking your goals.

The nature of blocks to change

You may truly want to lose 20 lbs in weight and be unaware that there is a part of you that derives a benefit from staying heavy. That benefit might be that the extra pounds are a protection against undue attention from the opposite sex, or they may serve to buffer you against discomfort in the world.

So there can be a benefit to staying the same. Another way of looking at this is to consider the downside to the positive change you want. A part of you might believe that being slimmer signifies greater intelligence and if you were to lose the 20 lbs, people might expect more of you. Or, that hidden part of you might fear you will lose the air of authority you radiate if you have less physical presence.

Whatever the nature of your conflict, you are not going to be able to move forward until it is resolved.

Revealing the blocks to change

You can try and discover what the underlying conflict is. You may already have some ideas about this block to change. If not, asking the following questions can throw light on how your progress is being sabotaged.

First, write down your goal eg. I want to lose 20 lbs and be slimmer. Add all the benefits you attach to this eg. I would be healthier, feel lighter and be more supple. I would be more attractive to men/women or prospective employers. My clothes would fit better etc.

To reveal the blocks to change you will ask two questions. Write the question: What are the possible benefits to me staying the same? When you answer this, also ask what benefits there are to staying heavy, being less healthy, less supple, less attractive and wearing tight clothes.

When you have exhausted the answers to the above question, ask this second question: What are the disadvantages to being 20lbs lighter, being healthier, more supple, more attractive and wearing better fitting clothes?

Keep coming back to the questions and you may uncover some surprising stuff running in the background of your mind. There may be several components that comprise the blocks to change.

Dealing with the resistance

Let’s say you find an unconscious program that says if you get thinner no one will take you seriously or respect you. This is a belief that needs to be tested and changed. Ask yourself what is the evidence for this belief. You may then remember hearing a colleague who was slim being harshly criticised for not pulling their weight.

This may have made such a strong impression on you that you vowed never to put yourself in a position to invite that sort of comment or be viewed in that way. In line with this, your unconscious mind is trying to protect you by preventing you from losing weight. This is your block to change.

To resolve the conflict in this example, there needs to be new, more helpful input which will appease the unconscious mind and help you to achieve your goal. You could look for examples of people who are slim and who DO command respect. Say to yourself: ‘I now know that I can be both slim and respected like (name and name), so it’s ok for me to lose 20lbs in weight’.

It also helps to imagine being each of these people in turn, to feel exactly what it’s like, and to know if it will be perfectly all right for you to change in this way. The beauty of this technique is that it may reveal other conflicts which you can explore and deal with in turn.

As you work through all of the issues that have been blocks to change you’ll find more and more of the energy that was employed in resistance has turned in the direction of your goal. When ALL of you is in alignment with your goal, it will be easy to succeed.

Here is another example:

The problem
You want to be more assertive, but no matter how hard you try to stand up for yourself, you end up being exploited or abused by others. You’ve read the books and you know what you need to say but when the same old situation arises you find yourself bottling out yet again.

Your goal and the benefits
Your goal is to be more assertive so people do not walk all over you or take advantage of you. The benefits are that you would feel greater self respect, would not be so angry and would be more likely to be promoted.

Identifying the blocks to change
Ask ‘What are the benefits of me staying the same?’ This might reveal that you feel safer, even comfortable, with the pattern of being down-trodden. Ask yourself also what the benefits are to remaining angry and staying in your current work position.

Ask ‘What are the disadvantages of me changing, having greater self-respect, being less angry etc.?’ You might find a fear of upsetting people, and of them disliking you. There may be fear around being promoted too.

Resolving the conflict
Most people feel safer staying the same because it is known territory. To overcome this block to change think about those times when you have risked change, or change has been forced upon you in the past, where the outcome was positive.

Here are three ways you can reassure your unconscious mind that the change you desire will be beneficial. In this example you could remember times in the past when you were more assertive and it felt good. If you don’t have such positive memories to draw upon you could instead mentally rehearse being assertive in the future. Visualise situations where you are strong and assertive and others respect you for it, rather than being upset or offended.

A third technique is to model yourself on someone who is assertive in a way that you admire. This may be someone you know, or a character in a book or in a film. Visualise yourself being that person and practise handling situations as if you were that person. Allow yourself to feel how good this change can be.

In these ways you can make the changes you want to create seem more familiar and feel less risky. After practising with visualisation for a while it is good to set some small goals and actually start applying the changes to real life situations. As you create a positive history of success you can enlarge your goals until the blocks to change are finally demolished.

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