Has this spontaneity topic ever been surprising and educational to me! Our latest discussion of Empath Empowerment has morphed into a conversation about habits, loathing of structure, and what to do when you cannot abide scheduled ANYTHING.
For background, in that conversation there were references to Myers-Briggs, a typing system with four different categories. One of them is whether you are:
- A “P” — for which the simple summary is that you prefer spontaneity.
- A “J” — for which the simple summary is that you prefer order, structure.
Within each of these four categories, what complicates things is that you can be just a bit in that category. Or you can be very extremely in that category. Or anywhere in-between.
In terms of Myers-Briggs, I already knew I was an extreme, extreme J. For instance, graduates of my workshops consistently praise how much they learn. I think that’s because I prepare loads of handouts plus highly structured segments and processes.
All this sets the stage for spontaneity: Only repeat participants discover how every workshop becomes a unique improv, based on who comes and whichever questions they ask. Definitely, though, structure first.
So commited I am to structure, I never considered how readers of my books — and this blog — might not operate that way. At all!
Joke on me then, when folks started commenting at SANDY’S wonderful guest post. Many are extreme J’s. ISABELLA C. and EMILY from our Enlightenment Life List, for instance. Given that thread…
Here’s a delightful follow-up from Blog-Buddy ZELDA. Blog-Buddies, you’re invited to share how you juggle habits, structure, and spontaneity.
How to Develop Good Habits When You Are Thoroughly Spontaneous
ISABELLA C, this guest post is dedicated to you as a fellow P from Myers-Briggs-Land. I wanted to chime in and say that I see following a rigid schedule as something entirely different from developing habits.
I wouldnt be comfortable either, trying to follow the regimen you described. Cant stand a 9-to-5 job! Need lots ospace and freedom, for sure!
Its been hard for me to put into words exactly, but Im spontaneously structured or spontaneous within my own created structure .or something like that. For instance:
- I dont get up or go to bed at the exact same time every day.
- Or eat at the exact same time every day.
- But before I go to bed, I have my self-care habits that have become an ingrained ritual. Bubble bath, candles, relaxation, etc.
When I do eat, its carefully thought out within a framework Ive developed of food that works with me. Then I have it organized so that I choose spontaneously within that framework.
Spontaneity rules in my classroom, too
As a teacher, I can see these differences (J vs. P, Im thinking) between us, Rose.
My classes have a clear structure in terms of trajectory and structured lessons. But within that, I love having spontaneity. I love allowing students to chime in with questions or comments during certain parts of the class.
I noticed how different my conversational style as a teacher is from Rose’s when I attended some of her workshops.
Though I see conversational style, and spontaneity preferences, as being very different from habits.
How are habits different, to me?
I guess what Ive come to see is this: Getting clear about certain habits, again, mainly in the areas of self-care, like food, sleep, exercise, empath skills, gives me structure.
Ultimately these habits allow me to be more spontaneous, because I feel fundamentally stable.
Where have the skills of Empath Empowerment® helped me most? In keeping me clear and in charge.
As Rose might put it, I have developed a habit of positioning my consciousness as a skilled empath. I’m not being spontaneously spacey and blowing off my important goals.
Do I sometimes just set it all aside and stare at the walls?
I definitely do. And *love* having unscheduled time so I can follow my own introverted whims… spontaneously.