Creatures of habit

Just the other day I had an epiphany about what does it mean when we say: “humans are creatures of habit.”

It was a usual day that I was working at my office in Taipei. I traveled back to my hometown for a few days and went in to my office in downtown, work for a few hours there at day. Right in the beginning of April, we just suffered the greatest earthquake in 25 years, so I was a bit worried about my Apple Display (which is the old model for about 10+ years old now) and iMac 27″. Luckily they all stayed intact.

While I was doing all those typical tasks, mostly just coding in PhpStorm, check Slack messages and surf the internet, I suddenly kinda missed it. The old building, the noise from the streets, the hot and humid Taipei, the (not so good) smell, the 7-11 downstairs and the coffee shop I went to get a caffeine boost. All of them.

But the next moment, on the contrary, I also found it’s really just nostalgia. I miss it but I don’t want to move back either.

I’m happy to say I really like what I have in Tokyo now. Part of that is because I build everything from scratch here. That could make me biased. Coming into the seventh month, there are still plenty to explore even just in Shinjuku. I’m probably still in honeymoon but anyways.

Habits can make or break you

It’s the habits make me miss the life in Taipei. I grew up there and everything between my house and the office have been always like that in the past 10+ years. I can be in the auto-pilot mode wandering between the two places and maybe also in a lot of other neighborhoods. There are my comfort zones and I’ve gotten used to how to spend my time there.

Even so, deep inside my heart, I always know I don’t really like the life there. While I can be very specific about certain things I don’t like, it’s also not like I want to leave my hometown just because of those things. I sometimes joke and say migrating to Tokyo is my middle age crisis, but maybe that’s true. I just wanted to be more uncomfortable.

Uncomfortable in the sense that you only know how to talk like a 3-year old in Japanese. Uncomfortable that you spend double than before. Uncomfortable that you need to rebuild your credits when you’ve already been in an established state in your home country.

Somehow I wanted to put myself out there for those. And if it can really work this time, maybe I can develop this new habit to get myself uncomfortable. Then ultimately, build a more comfortable life in my retirement age.

One response

  1. Audi Lu Avatar
    Audi Lu

    You make a really good point!
    I feel the same way, but I’m not as brave as you were. What I dare to try is the ‘psychological aspect,’ such as learning a few new things, but not to the uncomfortable extent that you experienced.

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