A Perfect World… Imbalance Creates Motivation
I am a big proponent of balance. Everything has to be just so. I believe that we should all strive to obtain balance in our lives. Balance between career and family. Balance between public and private. Balance between spiritualism, finances, and materialism.
One of the things I also pass on to my clients is that, since things don’t always remain in balance, “controlled imbalance” is also an important part of life. This, because, once you achieve balance, it is still necessary to move forward. However, forward movement causes imbalance, or is caused by imbalance, and the chase to re-achieve further balance.
— The Setup —
I recently had a chat with one of my friends who was absolutely fed up with his job. It wasn’t the work. It was the politics, the wars and conflicts, and the people within his office. He wanted to live in a “happy place”.
Obviously he was tired, and rightfully so. But, I thought about it for a while and began to realize that his desires were outstanding! So, we tried something. He, his wife, and my wife and I all went to Big Bear for the weekend. For that weekend, we would not do anything that would create conflict. If conflict reared its ugly head, we would stop and do something else. We would just be in a “happy place”.
Ultimately, it turned out that we did absolutely nothing. Among numerous other “non-confrontational” issues, we began several conversations, but had to stop because we had a conflict in our views. Then, we wanted to go out to dinner, but that was a conflict because we all wanted something different. By the time we left, we were all so irritated that we were about to blow because of the fact that our desire for “no conflict”, created massive inner conflict! It was an interesting test!
Originally, his question was, “How do I get rid of conflict in my life?” However, his new question was, “How do I use conflict to my advantage?”
— Can’t we all just get along? —
Well, the answer is yes and no. Believe it or not, the “positive interactions” and “negative conflicts” that we all encounter daily is actually “us getting along”. It is movement, motivation, trial and error. It is how we get things done in a world of millions of unique entities!
Conflict comes from two things: you choosing to move in a direction under your own force or you choosing not to move in a direction under someone else’s force. Lack of conflict is a sign that you’re sitting still. Conflict is friction and is a sign of movement, or the potential of movement.
We all get along on different levels and in different ways. It is this difference in our styles and methods that creates a conflict in our interactions. Anytime you make a decision, it is based on your own emotions, feelings, and desires. However, others will not understand your decision and will feel differently about it than you. Therefore, you must realize that interpersonal conflict is a result of movement and decisions simply because of the fact that the way “things are now” no longer matches “the way things were”.
— The same ol’ same ol’. —
When things are at their gloomiest, we want things to be better. We want it so that there is less stress and less conflict in our lives. That would be the perfect world. But, then, what of it? What would be “the purpose”? If there were no conflict, we would never be motivated in any direction, backward or forward.
However, did you ever stop and think what would happen if we all acted and interacted the same way? Obviously, there would be no conflict. However, there would literally be no reason to communicate because we would then all know the same things and feel the same way about everything. Imbalance would not exist and, therefore, neither would the need to do much of anything else. Perfection! Right?
But, what is conflict? Conflict in life is resistance to change. But, that can be seen two ways: either you’re changing and the environment resists this change, or something around you is changing and you resist the change. It is not so much that life is doling out bad things every turn you make, but, perhaps, you’re not turning the right way!
When things change, the Universe goes into imbalance. When things are thrown into imbalance, the Universe always seeks to achieve balance in any way possible. The general flow is: Balance -> Desire -> Imbalance -> Change -> (Repeat). But, how does that affect you?
— The need for imbalance. —
As I teach to my clients and associates, maintaining a balanced life within your own realm is very important. It is necessary to learn how to balance all aspects of your life such that you are running one life instead of a dozen smaller disconnected existences.
However, once you achieve balance, what do you do? Do you just sit there and enjoy the happy world you’ve created? Surely, after a while this will become boring. But, the way to move forward is to create an imbalance in one part of your life to get it moving forward. However, your aim is to issue small, controllable imbalances so that you can move back to a place where you can re-achieve balance.
Imbalance creates a flow. Imagine a river. Why does it flow? In most cases, it originates in the mountains and flows downhill to a point where it settles in a lake, or the ocean. In the lake or ocean, it is back to a balanced, even state. But, eventually the water evaporates and ends up back in the mountains as melting snow to flow down the river again.
What if the land was flat? The water would just sit there and stagnate. Mosquitoes would birth, diseases would evolve, and eventually the dead water would evaporate and fall back down to go, nowhere. Obviously, it is that difference of potential, that imbalance in the land, that makes that stagnate water do some sort of work so that it doesn’t turn into a swamp.
— Balance in the Workplace —
Applying this idea of imbalance to the workplace is similar to applying it to your own life. Managers purposefully create imbalance to move things forward. Many employees mis-interpret this as “bad politics”. Well, indeed, imbalance is a tool of politics, and it is a very effective tool.
Edward B. Toupin is a published author, technical writer, web developer, coach, and producer living in “The Entertainment Capital of the World,” Las Vegas, NV. One of his primary objectives in his work is to provide information to help others achieve fulfilling lives. Visit his site at http://encouragement.netfirms.com and http://www.toupin.com or contact him at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.