Beating the dual drums of familiarity & excitement

I was reading an article on stewarding online communities the other day and it talked about balancing comfort and familiarity with newness and excitement.

I think we all need comfort and we all need excitement.  What varies is our individual ratios of one to the other.

Some of us like to eat the same thing for breakfast, take the same route to work, do our work in a routine way, take the same vacation at the same time of the year in the same place with the same folks.  Those routines are comfortable, knowable and knowing to some.  Pushing these folks to do something new can be anything but exciting, rather something to be dreaded.

Welcome our custodians of tradition our bearers of familiar rhythms and predictable cycles.

Others crave difference, the thrill that comes with being edgy and trying something new, whether it be a new idea, a new hobby, a new vacation destination, or a new way of doing something simply for the sake of newness.  Unpredictability is something they yearn for and seek out.  Pushing these folks into a routine can cause untold headaches and rebellion.

Welcome our seekers of adventure, our experimenters, our celebrators of change.

During the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics I’m sure this ratio is something coaches, athletes and officials are acutely aware of.  The desire for the familiarity of home coupled with the edginess brought on by adventure and novelty.

And you?  Where do you sit?  What drum do you beat with most frequency, that of familiarity and comfort or the one that’s new and exciting?


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