"What you Resist Persists
What you Look at Disappears"
Carl Jung was an influential psychiatrist around the time of Freud in the early 20th century. “What you resist persists" is an abbreviation of his original quote which was “what you resist not only persists, but will grow in size.” To "resist" means to hide, deny, or cover up those parts of ourselves that we don't like and/or don't want to deal with. These parts cause us pain and discomfort so we try to suppress them somehow. But, assuredly, these parts get acted out in one way or another in our lives anyway causing our mental, emotional (and even physical) pain and dysfunction.
Jung found that those who resisted aspects of themselves would have those aspects persist, or actually enlarge. This would draw much energy into the cycle of resistance – problem – more resistance – more problem.
For example, a child gets called “dumb”, feeling lots of shame. As an adult he then resists “dumb”, striving to be smart, perfect. It becomes exhausting to run from any chance of being dumb. For example, maybe he’s always wanted to write a book, but so afraid he could say something anyone would think is “dumb”, so he never writes, ever. The more he resists, the more the pain persists. Oddly, he’ll be plagued by random occasions of really “dumb” things, more shames, more striving for perfection. Ever had this happen to you?
So what are you resisting? Perhaps it's time to look at it so it can be released and disappear.