Some readers of this website may say that following this re-think and taking the PLOVER path comes across as too laborious, and may ask "Do I really need to take all this on board?" or, "Won't I do just as well taking life as it comes, and be driven by people and things around me?"

Well, it's a choice we can all take.

The Trade-off

Simple Life

"Going with the flow" is easier

Keeps the mind uncluttered

Gives less uncertainty

You may not achieve your potential in life

You may not spot risks, dangers and bad influences

You may be more liable to get taken advantage of

Thinking Life

Helps you see through the bullshit, hype and spin

Discourages you from getting into ruts

Brings the buzz of the unexpected

You may become a worrier

Ordinary people may find you odd, awkward, aloof, uncommitted

You may find yourself more isolated

Questions you might ask yourself

  • Am I satisfied with how things are going?
  • Am I happy to go along with the crowd, my mates, the popular culture, community traditions?
  • When I get to the end of my life, am I likely to think "it's all been worthwhile"?
  • Am I naturally curious? Do I find it fun to find things out, or find the reason why?
  • Do I like to feel I've made my own decision about things?

PLOVER - and FROLIO if you are really serious - can offer a possible framework for examining things, reading between the lines, spotting other peoples' motivations etc.

Does it matter? I say yes, because we only have one life. We can't ever be in total control of our lives, but there's a balance to be struck between trying to be in control as far as we can, and leaving things to fate (or rather, the manipulations of everyone else around us). In the words of John Gray, maybe we should "carry on happily fallible and let meaning come and go".

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