When You Start Juggling Unalike Objects

You’ll drop the ball sometimes. Juggling is hard.

The sooner you embrace it, the sooner you can focus on improving your act.

We all juggle. Some of juggle people. Others juggle responsibilities. Some people juggle identities. Others juggle work and life.

Juggling is easier when everything goes together.

Imagine you’re juggling baseballs, for example. One or two is easy. A third increases the difficulty. A fourth takes some real skill. But what happens when you throw a knife into the mix? Suddenly, an unmatched object confounds the mix. It becomes an entirely new act. One that requires much more deliberate focus.

I’m convinced the same happens in life. Both in the number of different types of things we juggle – and the number of things we juggle that are different from the other things.

Friend groups paint a good picture. Think of all your friends. How many “groups” do the fit into? Are there some you don’t think would mesh well with others?

What about identities? Are you a different person to different people? How many different identities, and to how many different people? Surely it gets more difficult to keep straight the more there are. (The idea of this sounds painfully exhausting.)

The easy way out is to stop juggling. Sure, consolidating or off-loading a few things you’re juggling can help, too. But in both scenarios, you’ll miss out on a lot of the richness of life.

A little variety in life never hurt anyone. You don’t have to have an identical set of friends. Or responsibilities. Or interactions.

Even when the inevitable collision of juggling a lot of different things happens, the drama adds a layer of flair to the story you’re living.

It’s not easy. But doesn’t a life filled with homogenous experiences sound boring?