Learning to balance effort and relaxation is what provides the mental sanity and healing that we ultimately want out of practice.
Most people do not try hard enough in meditation, which is why most books/teachers emphasize effort. But the few people that are actually putting in the hours and retreat time tend to be the ones that try too hard. As a result, they kind of shoot past equanimity … too much effort kept me looping (A&P <–> DN nanas) and didn't allow me to settle into EQ … The good news is that a much more gentle approach will not only lessen the "heat", but it will also lead to a stable EQ and eventually SE. And much more importantly, the VERY VERY good news is learning how to do that is what provides the mental sanity and healing that we ultimately want out of practice. SE really doesn't change the person that much. It is all the work leading up to SE, learning to balance effort and relaxation, that’s what really changes a person.