Hard Resets versus Soft Resets

It’s reasonably cold and daylight is starting to dim. The park where I’m running is slowly blending into that uncertain shape, when it’s not fully dark, but contours are fuzzy. It’s a nice Saturday evening and I’m enjoying my come back run, after about 2 weeks of pause.

The running path is not as crowded as it usually is and I decide to go a little further than my initial goal, which was 7km. I can do 10km, easily, I say to myself, and then I push forward, as the light poles are turning on, flooding some parts of the running path in a surreal, yellow hallo, while the space between them is getting pitch dark.

As I enter one of those partially dark spots, my right feet is hitting the ground earlier than it should, I lose balance and, in an effort to counter that swing, I’m pushing on my left feet, only to realize the sole of my running shoe (already tore and almost without grip) is slipping, out of control. I see the ground coming towards my face, so I reflexly put my hands in front, to avoid impact, scratching my palms on the concrete, roll over my left shoulder, scratching it really good too and then I realize I’m laying on the ground.

I fell. There was a lump on the ground that I didn’t see, and the soles of my running shoes didn’t had enough grip to counter the stumble. As I got back up immediately, I realize I scratched my right knee too. Apart from that, nothing major.

Blood is starting to cover my scratches immediately and my brain is entering damage control state. I stop my watch (yeah, I know, I’m incorrigible) then decide to go home via a short path, crossing through the old town. I stop to a water fountain to briefly wash my palms and to asses damage: all scratches are superficial, but deep enough to incapacitate me for a couple of days, maybe more.

As I slowly head back home, I realize I won’t be able to do following activities:

  • morning yoga that involves sitting on my palms (sun salutation, headstand, and more)
  • practice guitar
  • write on my laptop at my normal speed – probably have to slow down to half of that

It’s A Hard Reset

And, with that, I’m coming to the topic of this article. This “accident” generated what I call a “hard reset”. The quotas surrounding the “accident” are because I don’t really believe in accidents, only in causes that we’re not aware of.

A “hard reset” is a more or less violent event that totally pauses your normal routine. For me, my morning yoga and guitar practice are more than routine, are part of who I define myself as. But for the next 2-3 days (hopefully just 2-3 days) I am literally forced to stop ding this. Oh, the frustration.

But every reset, being it “hard” or “soft” is necessary. Because, otherwise, it wouldn’t happen. I may not see it coming, I may not feel it’s necessary, but nothing happens without a cause. I learned – slowly, but eventually, I learned – that I may not see the world as it is, but mainly as I want it to be. Which means, at times, I’m not acting in the real world at all, but mainly in a self-generated fantasy, in a projection. If I spend too much time in that fantasy, the world will eventually wake me up, aligning me with what is, and disengaging me from what I think it is.

Most of the times, I can see where I’m not aligned, and I can start applying some changes. These are the “soft resets”. Changing my diet, implementing new habits, budgeting more aggressively, switching people with whom I spend the majority of my time. All these changes are initiated by me. That’s why I call them “soft resets”.

But every once in a while I experience “hard resets”, when the changes are imposed to me, by seemingly adverse circumstances. These are a bit more difficult to process and accept. But, in hindsight, every hard reset proved to be just as useful – if not more useful – than my self-initiated processes.

So, for the next 2-3 days I will try to ponder more, and do less. Apparently, that’s what this “hard reset” was about.

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