As part of my Playground Ponderables BeDo Bits newsletter, I’m also exploring some smaller pieces and rides and the marvelous metaphors they can offer to our coaching.
Take the Merry-Go-Round: You can’t do it along too well–you need someone to help you. Sure you can do it yourself, sort of. You can push it around and around, faster and faster, but as soon as you jump on, all your extra weight slows it down. And it will keep on slowing down. You can try to push yourself with one foot, but you really can’t get good traction to really get good speed. The trick is that you have to stay off of it and push other people. You get to give others the thrill of spinning at dizzying speeds.
Of course it’s exciting to spin in circles, watching the same thing pass by you again and again and again, and each time feeling like you might get flung off, so you hold on tighter.
The secret is: when you stand up, you lose your balance and you fall off. The lower you get, the more your grounded and focused, the easier it is to stay on. And if you lie down in the middle, centered, you’ll feel less pull to the side.
However, if there’s two of you on the ride, then the real fun can happen. You can hold each other’s hands and spin forever and not fall off. You can lean back and feel the pull and momentum and know that you’re safe, no matter how fast you go.
And the extra trick is, if you get dizzy, just focus on the person opposite you and you’ll regain your balance and recover.
All right gang, let’s make some more metaphors. What comes to mind when you think of the merry go round?