Friday, April 1, 2011

Balancing ‘Serious’ and ‘Fun’

Much of how we interact when we’re pushed emotionally is either serious or fun — one or the other we gravitate to.

Adjusting to become more attuned to other than our default is necessary to embrace a more balanced life.

Hints from Childhood

A good clue as to our true position is a mind cast back to childhood. If we were pushed by people or situations, did we get serious or make light of it? — One extreme is ‘emotional’ and the other is aloof.

It’s interesting observing children socially.

All kids tend to be upset to serious ends, depending on the level and kind of stimulus. But some will more naturally make light of conflict, whilst others get intensely serious about it.

Sure, there’s also a strong correlation to birth order here, with eldest siblings more likely to be the serious, highly responsible ones — kids who grow to be diligent but are more prone to distress.

Responses Broaden Our Appeal for Life

Similar to the dichotomy between the right and left sides of our brains, there’s also a dichotomy between serious and fun responses.

And like we might become more functional cognitively by brain-training both sides of our brains, we can also become more emotionally functional when we learn to balance our responses. We can become more serious or more fun, depending on what we lack.

What advantages does this offer?

Being more emotionally functional means we’ll have a broader range of responses available to us — these hopefully fitting the exacting needs of our situations.

Empowering Outcomes

The broader range of responses we’re capable of are making for us a capacity for life that provides options.

This is control over ourselves that we relish.

The ability to discern the need and then adopt the right measure of seriousness or fun is a powerful ally. It’s going to help us produce empowering outcomes, and not just for ourselves. Others, too, will benefit — for they’ll have a more emotionally reliable person in us to deal with.

With the ability to design our responses to the needs as they present, we’re less pigeonholed and people find us not only more maturely reliable, but more discerning and interesting too.

Reflecting Life Too

Not many of us are grossly serious or fun people, but those that are will find they’ll miss vast portions of life — for the full life cannot be enjoyed from one perspective over the other.

Life presents the broadest imaginable spectrum from stark seriousness to raucous fun.

Loath are we to miss out on these nuances of subtlety because we’re closed minded. The open mind shoots for balance.

© 2011 S. J. Wickham.

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