It’s a bit of an abstract idea, but something I’m enjoying thinking about is taking concepts of system theory and ecology and kind of applying them to personal life.
So you can imagine yourself as a system, and there’s energy coming in, energy going out, energy moving around within the system, and you can sort of analyze your life in this way.
So you know, when you look at the ecology model, you look at energy and the earth, you know, the energy coming in is the sun, and going out is heat, and then you have all the flows of energy within the world and human civilization.
But imagine taking this just down to the level of an individual life.
Where’s your energy coming from? You’re getting inflow of energy.
That can be in material things, money.
It can also be in love and attention and effort.
So we’re all receiving energy from somewhere.
Maybe we have people that love us.
We could see that as energy flowing in.
We’re receiving that, and we benefit from that inflow of love, just like the earth benefits from the sun shining, the solar input.
Well we can have our personal love input.
And of course, our material input, the money coming in.
Where does our money come from, and our material goods? And then on the way out, we also can give love to others, and that’s an outflow of love, and same with our money, same with our material goods and our effort.
Now of course, you know I like metaphors like this, and they’re not perfect.
So love does not act exactly like money.
It’s not like, you know, I can give love and then I have less of it.
But in a sense, even if love itself is something unlimited, our efforts and attention are limited.
So you know, where do we put our effort, our energy, our attention? Where do we expend work? What do we put our work into, what we care about, what we work for and try for and put our focus on? That could be seen like a flow of energy.
So we receive that.
Who are the people who are providing this energy to us, through giving us love and attention? I mean, everybody has somebody.
Almost everybody has at least one person that gives some amount of love and attention, and it seems like this is something we all need.
We all need this energy input.
And the few people that have absolutely no one that cares about them at all, I mean, this would be- they’d be starving for this input, starving for energy.
So it seems like it’s worth remembering, and you know, being clear about oh, who are these people that actually care about me? Who are the people that are actually giving me love? And that’s like bringing energy into my system.
It’s like we’re being fed by the love around us.
And similarly, we can look at where is our attention going? Where are we putting our efforts? Where are we giving energy to? So we can look at this whole flow and think about how our system works, in both the idea of, you know, love and attention, and also in our material goods.
So it’s just a different way of looking at things.
Maybe it’s too abstract, and it’s just another way to imagine what is my system? What is my life? What makes my life the way it is? If we lost some of that input, if you know, we’re no longer loved by the people that love us, no longer supported, given attention, and of course our material support, then our system will suffer.
And similarly on the way out, if we were to stop giving support to others, maybe those people would be suffering.
Again, obvious point, perhaps, but just another way of looking at it.
So we could look at, if something seems off with our system, we can look at OK, what are my energy inputs? Where am I getting this? Where am I getting my love and attention and efforts and care and materials and money, all these things? Where are those things coming from? And on the other side, where are my efforts going? So for some people, maybe the issue is that they simply don’t have a lot coming in and for others maybe the issue is that the outflow, maybe is that going to the right people? Are we giving our energy and love to the same people who are giving it to us? Or it seems like it’s all too easy to simply take for granted what we’re getting and then we end up giving our attention and energy to other things that catch our attention, but maybe they really aren’t giving us anything back.
Maybe they can become like black holes, where we can pour our energy into something that never seems to change or to give anything back.
So I think this is definitely not for everybody to have this kind of, you know, economic way of looking at things like love, but I think it can be a different way of sort of imagining our personal ecosystem.
So clearly you can see I’m still working on this idea, and I’m not sure about the details of it, so I would love to hear your feedback about this way of looking at things.
#personalsystem #energyinenergyout #ecosystem