Tension is who you think you should be,
Relaxation is who you are.
So they say, and I would agree
And I have practiced being relaxed, and gone deep in that practice.
Despite knowing, in my body, in my mind
How good relaxation feels,
In my daily life tension still wins.
At work, behind a computer,
Trying to get things done, getting irritated by the little things,
Or worrying, or wondering why it’s just not all done better, or quicker.
My muscles tighten as my mind tightens.
This is the real me in so many moments of my life,
The me with tension.
And to relax requires an effort of will, a decision, a choice.
It’s a choice I fail to make, over and over again.
I’ve just come back from tai chi class
And I feel great
The feeling will carry over into tomorrow
Then it will gradually dissolve back into tension and forgetfulness
Using too much effort, and trying too hard.
One of these days I’ll make a different choice.
Until then, tension is who I am, relaxation is who I am not allowing myself to be.
Sometimes I wonder, as I practice tai chi,
Just why I keep going,
What I’m achieving
It is me, coming back to the choice between tension and relaxation.
Learning to choose relaxation in each moment,
So that one day I will truly be able to say
That relaxation is who I am.