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Weebles Wobble


Imagine a chair. Not an Eames lounge or anything fancypants, just something with a seat, back, and four legs.


There's a complication:


All four legs are a different length. From longest to shortest in the format below.

So you can kinda balance pretty stablying if you lean forward because now your legs create two more contact points in addition to the three legs touching the ground. But it's not exactly a relaxing or comfortable position.


If you lean back legs 1, 2, and 4 touch the ground... but you're at a precarious angle and if you disengage your core at all then you're probably going to topple backwards.


And you and me both know you're going to spend more time and emotional energy than you should trying to balance on legs 1 and 2 at least a few times. To no effect. Because as soon as you so much as breathe you're going ot accelerate quickly in one direction or another and probably fall down.


Now while you're sitting in this failure of a chair you have a task in front of you. Let's say you have to read a short story and then write an essay on it... from the chair. So your attention and all your efforts are constantly twarted by the fact that you're arguing with this shitty design and you are definitely not giving it your all. You can't. Because some of you is persistently engaged with the struggle.


This tends to be what too many divers think of as buoyancy and trim. Something resembling stability, but... not. Kindasorta able to hold still... as long as their attention doesn't waver. It's infuriating... but you get used to it.


Wouldn't it be easier to just have a chair with proper legs. So that you can sit there, unmoving, no emotional or psychologial energy wound up in maintaining stability. Then you could sit there, casually, with your legs crossed, while you tended to any task set before you.


This sort of stability is an equipment thing to a degree - having the right equipment, configured and weighted properly - is ike getting the right chair.


But that control and stability, that chair, is also a metephor for what can be a learned and practiced skill. Even WITH the right gear it must be learned and consistently practiced.


And worth it.


Because wouldn't it be way nicer to be able to let the staying in one place take care of itself, so all your attention can be focused on your task?


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