If you don’t have balance between comfort and struggle, manufacture it.
That’s why we lift weights. That’s why we do stupid things when we’re bored. The universe is built on oscillation. We breathe in and out. We push and pull, recoil and spring, thrust and retract.
We already have a pre-programmed natural instinct to seek out balance. But most of the time, it is done mindlessly which means we often bounce between the two extremes: “Now I’m comfortable.. I need to sabotage myself.. and now I’m in pain..I need to seek comfort.”
A useful skill is to be able to accurately quantify the amount of suffering or comfort you’re experiencing in a given moment.
What if, for instance, we look at it like, “Now I’m at suffering level 5 so I need to add 5 points worth of comfort, not more, in order to achieve balance”?
The more accurate I am at first assessing it, the better I will be able to figure out what the required response is.
It’s useful to remember not to fall victim to the negativity bias (giving myself a suffering score of 10 when it’s really 2, thus erroneously forcing 10 points worth of comfort and messing up the balance.)
Conversely, we tend to score our comfort levels lower than they really are, and thus failing to notice that life is actually good.
Balance is not an easy state to access but I imagine it is worth striving for.