Stability is not immobility.
Klemens von Metternich (19c German diplomat)
Stability refers to one’s inner balance and centeredness. An ever accelerating pace of modern life in general, and a competitive atmosphere in the workplace in particular, are often a challenge for stability. This is reflected in the widespread use of tranquillisers and also the increasing popularity of psychological methods that help achieve and maintain stability. Some of these methods will be suggested in this area too, but let’s start by clarifying what stability is, as it can easily be misunderstood.
The neutral position
Stability doesn’t mean being passive. In fact, stability enables a more active life as instability is energy consuming. The latter is not associated with high arousal but with being nervous, tense or impulsive. So, you can have an intense experience and still maintain stability. The eye of the storm is perhaps a fitting metaphor for this: stillness in your centre even when the rest of your mind and body are racing. Although you can sense whether you are stable or not, stability is not an affect – in a way, it is beyond affects. So what it is then? Stability can be best described as an ability to reach and remain in the neutral position. Knowing that such a neutral position exists can release you from the pressure to be in a good mood all the time. You may not feel great (nobody always feels great) but that’s ok. Not feeling great doesn’t presuppose feeling bad, as you can be in that neutral position.
Why stability matters
Stability affects almost every situation (e.g. learning, work, sport activities, relationships, moods, sleep, etc.). It benefits not only psychological but also physical health, and assists reasoning, decision-making and a variety of other mental processes. Last but not least, stability allows you to be more in control (of yourself) and cope better with unpredictable or challenging situations.