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Positive Worse Life (needs editor)

Making a positive change in your life actually makes your life worse. Starting on the physical level, say using your nondominant hand to swirl up some eggs, makes you feel clumsy. But in a couple days, you'll be better at the task.

It's not fun being bad at something. Especially something which you can do more effectively with the habitual approach. Using your nondominant hand is an analogy, but there are others, like changing your approach to learning. Often, it is pure effort, the mustering of will. But sometimes we need to use our nondominant hand to learn. This might mean following a line of thought further to the bottom than we're used to, or have time for. Or this could mean learning by counter example, actively trying to disprove or question what we're reading.

Language can’t describe movement or the bodily experience very accurately. There are too many details. I think language also falls short of describing our motivations. We learn, but we are motivated by a black box which pushes us further into expertise. And we use language in retrospect to describe what we're learning and doing. And oftentimes it's the medium of learning itself. But I think we're motivated by something more physiologicial. The rewards of reading, education, are partially financial, partly personal, and partly unexplainable. But we consume a lot of language in the process.

Being in a body isn’t a linear experience. But consuming language is. I can't tell where one ends and the other starts, sometimes language seems physiological. They say Cormac McCarthy writes from his organs, not his brain.

So to get back to it, a positive change is likely to make your life worse. In the short term. After meditation, thoughts seems loud, but that’s because you’ve created silence to contrast with the noise. And heck, you might be tired from the effort it took to focus. So focusing afterwards is even harder.

This is not to say don’t try to make changes, but just to help us understand why change is so frustrating. Patterns are hard to break. A certain tone of thinking may have formed a well-worn groove in your mind, say a self-deprecating tone, so when you try to think differently, with a different emotional tone, it may feel unfamiliar. At least you’re familiar with self-deprication. Best to stick to that.

Jokes aside, I’m writing this to push myself and those reading to become familiar with the unfamiliar. If something was once easy, even an everyday act like walking, now seems awkward as you try to bring change to it, retain the meta-attention to realize that, the negative feedback is actually a good sign. The courage to expose oneself to negative information like that will pay dividends in the long run. At least, that’s what I think.