Let’s learn a little bit more about the five primary resistance archetypes.
First, just a really quick recap. Resistance is something that our subconscious does when we’re in a growth process and looking to grow our business, relationships, life, education, health (etc.) in some way. Often times, more often than not actually, our subconscious will bring resistance up to the forefront for us NOT to move forward.
Now it’s not that our subconscious doesn’t want us to move forward. But our subconscious has a modus operandi that safety is primary versus growth so it’s going to bring up elements in ourselves, to make it more difficult for us to change something in our lives.
Resistance isn’t good or bad in and of itself, but we do need to know about it if we want to be on a growth path. If you ever want to change something in your life, resistance will absolutely come up because that’s how the process works in our subconscious. So becoming aware of our resistance patterns in and of themselves is a compelling way to begin experiencing more growth, happiness, love abundance in our lives.
You know, no one really likes to be labeled as their resistance archetype, right? 😂🤣 We all love to be labeled as our superpowers. 🦸🦸♀️ So we want to have fun with the resistance archetypes.
You’ve already taken the quiz, and you’ve got an idea of where you land on the spectrum based on your elemental nature which we’re going to talk about in just a moment. So let’s enter into this with some light-heartedness, have some fun with it, and overcome your resistance patterns.
This work has grown out of a deep understanding and education in Chinese Medicine and Taoist (*) philosophy.
The five elements are;
Taoists look at the universe or the world as always being in a natural process. One of the natural processes is the seasons. So, if we look at the right side of this wheel, we see that spring is going to drop down to the bottom and always turn into summer, summer will always turn into autumn, and autumn will always turn into winter. No, matter how long the world’s been here, that’s how it’s always been and always going to be. You never jump from spring to autumn, or from summer to winter. They always go in that order; they never go backward. This is how it always is, without fail.
As students of natural law and natural processes, we come to depend on the things that are always reliable. Traditional Chinese medicine looks at the season and the elements associated with each season.
Wood has to do with growing. Think of plants exploding through the ground in the springtime and trees growing higher and higher.
The summer is Fire. Think about the heat of the sun.
Autumn is the metal element. You might think, “what does that have to do with anything?” Philosophically, metal has to do with alchemy or becoming more purified, letting go of the dross and the impurities. Autumn is when the trees drop their leaves. They’re letting go of something that no longer serves them; they’re becoming purer. So, metal is associated with autumn.
Water is associated with winter. Think about ice and snow.
Earth sits right in the middle. In some versions of the medicine wheel, it’s associated with late summer, but in this Medicine Wheel, it is right at the center because the seasons revolve around it.
Now, we’re talking about emotional polarities so just another note that emotions are not good or bad, in and of themselves. However, we do know that when we start to experience emotional polarities or emotional extremes, they start to become a lot less functional for us in our lives. Since we want to be on a growth path, we need to understand that we grow most when we’re experiencing balance. You can probably come up with stories or examples of when your growth path has been stunted by emotional extremes that you’ve experienced.
Each one of these elements is also associated with an archetype. So you’ve done the Resistance Archetype Quiz, you probably have an idea of where you land in here already, but let’s just go through them really quickly.
- Spring or the wood element is associated with the Judge
- Summer or the fire element associated with the Dependent
- Autumn or the metal element associated with the Dictator
- Winter or the water element is associated with the Loner
- Earth is associated with the People Pleaser
Why do we use these archetypical names associated with these elements? It’s because of the primary behaviors that go along with the name.
If we look at the primary behaviors that go along with each one of these names;
- The wood element, it’s really about judgment and righteousness. The Judge’s catchphrase is, “I’m right, and you’re wrong.”
- The fire elements issue is associated with being needy or dependent. Fire doesn’t have good boundaries. Fire will just spread all over the place. And so this can be the same way with fire people. Fire people happen to have more porous boundaries than other people do. And this can often set up relationships that are more codependent in nature, where we need someone else to do something for us to have our change. The catchphrase of The Dependent is, “Help me!”
- The metal element has to do with controlling behavior. Metal wants to keep it together and be perfect. Everything just in its right place. The catchphrase of The Dictator is, “Do what I say.”
- The water element is associated with not showing up. The winter is about going inward and not coming out of your cave. The catchphrase of The Loner is, “Leave me alone, I’ll figure it out myself.”
- Earth, in the middle, is associated with confusion. The catchphrase of The People Pleaser is, “I’m confused and I don’t know what to do.”
Now here’s the interesting thing. In the natural process, spring always goes to summer, always goes to autumn, always goes to winter and all circles around the Earth, which is the hub of all of this experience. So, it doesn’t matter where you start on this wheel; if you don’t get off the wheel, you’re going to go through the whole process, just like spring always goes into summer and so on.
If you’ve ever noticed when you’re experiencing really extreme judgment or really judging somebody and thinking, “they’re so freakin wrong,” what you’ve inadvertently done is become codependent with that person, because now we need them to do something different for us to feel better about ourselves or the situation. As we try to repress the feelings of righteousness or try to feel vindicated, we have unwittingly become the Dependent and in need of that person doing something different. From here we often straighten our backs, close our hearts, and start telling other people what to do; ordering them around and demanding they fix it. When we eventually realize that we don’t have any control over anything other than ourselves, we can collapse with despair and go inward claiming, “I’m not coming out until I figure out what’s wrong with me.” We stop showing up for work, coaching calls, family, or whatever else it is that used to seem important. When we go around and we don’t get off the wheel, we end up being completely confused about everything. It feels like, “I really don’t know what to do anymore.”
This can happen in milliseconds, over days, weeks, months, or years in this whole process, but this is the process that we go through. It all happens naturally, which is so amazing because it’s a built-in part of this natural world.
*Taoism or Daoism is a philosophical tradition of Chinese origin that emphasizes living in harmony with the Tao (the Way.) Taoism differs from Confucianism by not emphasizing rigid rituals and social order but is similar in the sense that it is a teaching about the various disciplines for achieving “perfection” by becoming one with the unplanned rhythms of the universe called “the way” or “tao”. Taoist ethics vary depending on the particular school, but in general, tend to emphasize naturalness, simplicity, spontaneity, compassion, and humility.