Let’s do a little exercise. A bit of awareness development does no harm. Feel free to interact when you are done.
4 unique phases
There are four universal phases in the cyclic patterns of life that have been identified. Each affects the way we perceive and deal with life’s circumstances. The phases are reflected in the drawing above. For the sake of awareness and understanding I have given them simple names that can be replaced by many other with a similar significance as you can see in the brackets:
1: Change (also: a new life, pioneer, awareness, young, renewal, hope, innovation, space, birth, adaptation, spring)
2: Balance (also: harmony, togetherness, adult, co-creation, trust, love, peace, construction, optimism, wellness, equality, stability, summer)
3: Stress (also: fear, bureaucracy, control, hierarchy, systems, old, growth, automation, speculation, greed, negation, pressure, autumn)
4: Crisis (also: break down, death, depression, competition, confrontations, theft, criminality, hate, distrust, individualism, discrimination, chaos, winter)
These four phases have also teased many economic, philosophical, mathematical, spiritual, anthropological, biological, etc analysts that you may have heard about. I am going to ask you to define where you stand and where you find your surroundings to be? Please decide at first sight where you feel you stand personally today as an individual? If you have difficulties with the bold names to identify your own status you may find it easier to refer to some other word in the brackets. You may feel in winter (referring to a cold spell in your life with crisis, problems, etc) or maybe a new period of passion and idealism (number 1)…
The four situations are not static. They follow each other up in the chronological, numerological order with 4 jumping into 1 again: 18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.4….. It does not always start at 4 nor 1 of course. It starts when you become aware of the cycles and start to use it for guidance. Your own starting point today is the number you chose at the poll.
So if you chose 2 (balance) you know that 3 (stress) will follow. This will lead to a crisis (4) and eventually to some kind of change (1). The cycle begins than again with a new moment of balance (2) for you. One situation always leads to the other. Sometimes slowly, sometimes very fast. Out of all four situations we always desire balance (2) most yet no matter how hard we try there is never a status quo in life. To achieve balance we need to accept the other three states also.
Life is on the move
Our life is far from static. We are influenced and challenged all the time by a large variety of impulses. Life is an adventure. We need to act to provide ourselves with the (primary) resources to stay alive. There are moments of abundance and scarcity. When abundance occurs we fear loosing it. When scarcity happens we become inventive to try to get back to abundance. We never really have balance because living life is by definition a permanent search for it through adaptive interaction with our surroundings. The amount of personal security we find in our surroundings determines also the amount of willingness we display to challenge it through change. When there is abundance we react relaxed to change, when there is a situation of crisis we are likely to suffer one too.
Where does your surroundings stand today?
If your surroundings influences our situation, behavior and decision making by providing abundance or shortages, opportunities or threats, how would you judge the current situation? You may take your family life as a benchmark, your job, the society you live in…..whatever determines your current situation today most? Don’t worry, the polls are anonymous. They are simply for the sake of awareness building while showing that you are not alone, what ever your specific situation would be.
When you compare your personal answer with that of your surroundings, how do they relate? Do they coincide (1 -1, 2 – 2, 3 – 3, 4- 4)? Are you ahead in the cycle (1-4, 2-1, 3-1) taking a crisis as a breaking point? Or are you lagging behind?
What are you going to do about it?
With this simple exercise of two projections on a universal cycle you make up your mind on how to deal with the situation. The exercise adds the cyclic view to your awareness, a kind of predictability that can be influenced by your level of self awareness and acceptance of these universal realities. So far it has just been a rational exercise of interpretation of these realities through a model by picking a number. The question “what are you doing about it?” draws you into the field of emotions.
Just imagine that you are happily living a harmonic life in the stability of situation 2 (balance). You suddenly now become aware that this situation may not last for ever. This may already be enough reason to enter the phase of stress (3). You will blame me for causing this stress and may want to get back into the dormant state of satisfaction.
Maybe you are in stress (3) of having to work in a job that you intensely dislike simply because you need to pay your mortgage. Your family is living in harmony (2) thanks to your salary. You may not dare to go out to find something else out of fear for a financial or relationship crisis (4). Many risk a burnout like this and enter a mental or physical crisis instead.
There are plenty of other situations thinkable in which you voluntarily or involuntarily have to deal with choices. At hindsight you often say “if only I had known” or “if I had done this or that”. This “if I had…” is of course frustrating but even more complicated is to take action with foresight when at first sight no action seems to be needed. We may call this leadership but we also often call it obsessive worries. Where the differentiation lies has to do with your own wisdom, vision, determination and guts. You are considered crazy or stupid by others when you fail and a hero when you succeed. Does that prevent you from considering action?
As an individual you determine your own life’s adventure. It becomes a different emotional story when you have responsibilities over other people. How do you deal with all this when you are a father or mother taking care of young children? Or the CEO of a large company with many employees? How does a city council deal with this responsibility or the country’s president? Or me, a person who wants the current societies to convert into sustainable human progress with Sustainocracy?
Understanding where you are is very helpful. Awareness about the cycle is key to take proactive action when time has come. Many organizations invest in a R&D to produce position 1 opportunities of change but find that the world has grown too complex and fast to come up with novelties alone. A good understanding of the psychology of human complexities is key, not just for business or political structures but for humankind as a whole.