Resistance Style Inventory
Working With and Appreciating Resistance

The Resistance Style Inventory is designed to give useful feedback about your style of resistance. One style of resistance is neither better nor worse than another. You will find pairs of statements on its pages that describe alternate ways of responding to situations involving different views. All of us have creative ways of managing change and resistance.

What is Resistance?

Resistance refers to any attempt to oppose, hold back, slow things down, block efforts to bring about change or maintain the status quo. The civil rights movement and the women's movement are examples of resistance to the status quo. Attempts to defend or protect against both movements are examples of resistance to change in the status quo.

How do we Recognize it?

Resistance can be direct or indirect; overt or covert; verbal or physical. It takes many forms, up to and including attacks on those who advocate or lead efforts to bring about or to prevent change. Indirect and covert resistance is often hard to detect. In general, we can assume that people are covertly resisting when they are not prepared to consider the validity of their doubts, concerns, and reservations. Indirect resistance is often expressed by unwillingness to engage in discussing issues for the purpose of problem solving. Although most resistance takes the form of verbal diatribe, discussion, and debate, it can also become violent. The assassinations of Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., John and Bobby Kennedy, Anwar Sadat, and Itzhak Rabin are well-known examples of violent resistance to prominent agents of change.