Relationships have their ups and downs, their highs and lows. For many it can be like an emotional seesaw; when I’m feeling high, you’re on a low, and when you’re riding high, I’m low. And sometimes, those highs and lows can get a bit scary. If I fall off, what happens to me? What happens to you? What happens to us?
I’ve been thinking about the seesaw as a metaphor for relationship, whether at work, or more personal contexts.
We start in balance…
Then, up and down we go, me and you, when you are way up, I’m way down
So why not pay it forward? Move closer, to better listen to the other person, and what do you know when I do that I have to get bigger (laws of physics), for us to stay in balance. We are now, through my growth (through active listening, empathy), closer, more connected, and if we get out-of-sync, the fall isn’t as far (more physics).
The other party sees I’ve moved closer, that I am listening to them if they reciprocate by moving closer to me (it could be an act as simple as commenting on a blog), we’ve gotten even more connected, they’ve grown too (to stay in balance), and if either of us fall off, the fall is minimized! So, we’re in balance again, stronger, and more attached. We’ve moved and found a new we we (or maybe moved from me to we!)…
What’s missing? Well the first thing that comes to mind is excitement? It’s exciting to be up so high. Sure we’ve gotten closer. Yet, we’ve taken some of the risk/reward out of our relationship. Or have we? Have we not introduced a new risk element through our increased connectedness?
What’s your take on moving closer? What balancing lens do you look at a relationship with?
Photo credit: Jk_too