Tai chi and the “Comfort Zone”

Sometimes we have to do something out of our comfort zone if we want to learn. We have to learn out of our moment of inertia. Few want to do that. Few actually do. Most don’t want to even try. It’s our times.

All of the effort we make to do anything amounts to an effort to reach what I see as “equilibrium.” It’s human nature. No problem with that. Problem is, we equate an unwillingness to move out of our comfort zone as seeking equilibrium.

We do need balance, but doing nothing won’t change a condition. It needs to shift to improve. In tai chi practice, change is as simple as changing the way you move. But often enough we resist even that. Wanting isn’t enough. You have to find a way to move out of a comfort zone and towards a new position.

However uncomfortable that may feel, moving towards a new balance is more accurately in equilibrium with the world around you and within yourself. That creates a new view of reality.

So, if you are not shifting your view, you might be fighting to stay in your comfortable haven. Fighting to change someone else is similar.

There is another side to this dynamic; i.e., remembering. I see in class, as well as in myself through the years of my learning, that often after learning something new I forget it. Without continuous effort over a set period of time it is difficult to remember what you have learned. This correlates with the tendency to do less rather than more to overcome inertia.

In this case, however, since forgetting is also human nature, we have a different monster, so to speak, to overcome that is not of our own making. We are programmed to forget new knowledge that exposes a new way of moving.

I think one thing is we don’t see how it applies to our survival in life. Maybe this is faulty reasoning, maybe it is just the way we are, but it can change, because we are adaptable beings. We would never have survived our time on Earth without adaptation and change.

Tai chi is simply a practice of adapting and changing the way we move and by virtue of that practice, we change our ability to survive in nature and in the human world.