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Note How it Feels

You've probably heard this before:

"Now try it with your other hand, and pay attention to how that feels."


I can't recall when I first heard the idea, but I also can't remember a streak long enough to be noteworthy where I stuck to the training. I say 'training' because 'other side' efforts require a conscious effort to stress our muscles and our brain in ways that are not natural.


Our familiarity with how easily we get something done on one side provides a built in benchmark for how we'd like it to feel on the other side. We conveniently get to observe ourselves going in and out of a state where our brain and musculature are challenged. But explaining this concept was that's not what I was thinking about today.


Today, and not for the first time, I was reminded of the infinite number of opportunities we have to practice these 'other side' efforts.


For example, I walk down three steps to go into my office. I typically lead with my left foot. Today, I stepped down with my right foot first. If you are a snowboarder, you'll recognize this as 'goofy', and noted how it felt.


I poured my coffee with the other hand and noted how it felt.


I cleaned my glasses with my other hand and noted how it felt.


I put a sweater on with the other hand first and noted how it felt.


And then when I started to type this entry I noticed that my eyes and body were pulling to the left, and still are a bit. My brain is working to bring me back to 'normal' but new paths were clearly created. That's exciting. That means new synaptic neighbors with whom to create new ideas or new ways of thinking. That means new roads in my brain, or new rivulets on the mountain. Pick your analogy.


Furthermore, by noting how this feels it helps me to get more comfortable with being uncomfortable. It inspires empathy for people who might be trying something for the first time, like a child.

Peter Bysshe

P.0. Box 427

Waccabuc, NY

10597

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646.342.5210​

peter@bysshetank.com

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