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bouncing tennis ball, freedom

For Two Different Reasons, We All Need Structure To Freely Move

Early in our marriage, I was a free spirit. Think of a kite flying around in the sky and that was me. Unfortunately, I was so busy floating among the clouds I lost track of reality and the responsibilities around me. 

My wife was a structured high achiever. She stayed grounded because she was the product of past kite-flying people. She was the one who dealt with the consequences of their actions (I now know how she feels).

To leverage a metaphor, I imagine us both as bouncy balls. I was bouncing everywhere I possibly could with no limits. She was a bouncy ball not moving at all. We both needed a box, to bounce freely.

For me, I needed a box so I could bounce around openly, but not get out of hand. Structure gave me the freedom to move while also providing enough constraint that my actions did not harm people, and instead uplifted and empowered them.

She needed a box so she could feel free to bounce around. Structure gave my wife the boundaries where she could move freely, and it allowed her to act when she otherwise would have felt paralyzed to do so.

With a structure in place, we both bounced around freely, but how the structure helped us each was different. We’re going to have people in our lives that are different than us and it’s important we bring others along in a way that empowers us and reassures them. As much as we might resist or struggle to create it, it's something that equips us all to flourish in our life, relationships, and work. 

Hero Photo by Samuel-Elias on Unsplash

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