Ask the Pros by Angela Grace

Stability

My wife: Honey, am I boring?
Me: No, of course not. Why do you ask that?
My wife: You know.
Me: It’s that “we’re not invited to parties” thing, right?
My wife: Yep. I think we’re not invited because I’m boring. I don’t drink, use drugs,
don’t smoke and don’t cuss.
Me: You’re not boring. You’re stable. And I love you deeply, madly, passionately, and
erotically.
My wife: uh-huh.
(FYI, saying the love part is a really good way to navigate a difficult conversation,
especially when you end with “erotically”).

Stable. A person who is sane, reliable, and sensible, not easily upset or disturbed.
Someone who is steady, poised, and calm. Seems like being stable would be a good
characteristic to have. Yet, in our society, stability is undervalued, and the person who
is stable is often overlooked. Stability is dull (but not boring!).

As an example, look at the Presidential election. One Candidate was dramatic,
unpredictable, and made outrageous assertions. His frequent campaign events were
theatrical productions with a whiff of potential violence or danger. The world
watched him, mesmerized with the spectacle he created through his unhinged,
unstable words and actions. People and journalists alike were addicted to seeing what
would happen next. The other Candidate was stable, wise, strong, and dependable.
She lost. Instability won.

As authors, you know there is something in us that loves the swashbuckling sword fight,
the hard drinking, reckless, adventuresome detectives. So, we don’t write about the
“get up in the morning, do the dishes, pay the bills, throw in a load of laundry”
…zzzzz…. because it is boring. But, tedious, everyday work is the glue that holds us
together. Make no mistake, we absolutely need swashbuckling detective stories, but,
when the rubber hits the road in our day to day lives, we need stable people around
us.

My clients have been asking lately about what they can do to help with events like
hurricanes and shootings. When they ask, they are thinking on a big and broad scale.
And, since they cannot do “big,” they feel helpless, and start to become despondent.
My advice to them is usually met with surprise. “Be stable.” My clients do not realize
that their being steady and solid is helping those in need. People in crisis need us to
be stable.

Actions taken to create or maintain stability can vary greatly. However, there are
some common behaviors that work for many people. Keep your daily routine (or
create a daily routine if you don’t have one). Go to work. Write. Get plenty of sleep.
Eat healthy meals. Take care with finances. Maintain relationships. This is not a good
time to make major decisions or changes for your life. It is certainly not a good time to go overboard with alcohol or drugs. Do what is best for you to keep on an even keel.

Think about what traits or characteristic you value in your friends when you are in crisis and emulate them. Good friends offer sound advice, keep in touch with you and track your well being, sit at your doctor’s office for hours while you’re being treated, loan you money, watch your dog. These types of friends are not always fun, exciting, or sexy, but they’re what we all need to keep balance and health in our lives.

Maybe this is a good time to reach out to those individuals in your life that offer you
stability. Appreciate and value them for the security and sanity they bring. Recognize that their steady way of being may not make them the life of the party but they do enrich your life. And please, invite them to your next party!

 

Angela Grace MA, LLP, BCC
Optimized Life Coaching

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