Emotional Wellbeing



Mandy Kloppers

Are you a ‘dabbler’ or a ‘doer’?

 loser photo

Are you a ‘dabbler’ or a ‘doer’?

One of my favourite words in the English dictionary is “flibbertigibbet”. A flibbertigibbet is described as an unreliable, excessively chatty, flighty person who seems busy but actually gets very little done. A flibbertigibbet is definitely a dabbler – someone who never quite gets serious and stuck in to  life.

So, do you think you are a ‘dabbler’ or a ‘doer’? It’s important to make the distinction as being a dabbler means you are more likely to spend your time ‘spinning your wheels in the mud’. Dabblers put in the effort but they put the effort towards things that won’t bring the right results.

Characteristics of a dabbler:

1) Easily led by others.

2) Lack of clear precise goals.

3) Commitment-phobic on most levels: relationships, work, non-reliability in most areas of life.

4) Lack focus and procrastinate often.

5) Easily distracted from their aims and goals in favour of what others want them to do. This often helps further other people’s aims and goals whilst leaving the dabbler achieving very little for themselves.

6) Lack of self awareness and personal boundaries.

7) Dabblers can lack determination and persistence.

8) Dabblers are often referred to as the ‘plodders’ in life. They are not overly ambitious even though they may claim they are.

9) Dabblers like to play it safe. They don’t like to muck in and get their hands dirty – they are not good at dealing with the tougher side of life and tend to withdraw or disappear temporarily when there is trouble. Can be seen as being ‘fair weather friends’.

10) Lack empathy and compassion.

If you think you are a dabbler there are many things you can do to turn yourself into a ‘doer’.

How to stop being a Dabbler:

1) Identify areas in your life where you lack commitment. Is it in your personal life, professional life or do you lack conviction when it comes to carrying out your own ambitions in life?

2) Once you have identified these areas, try to understand why you lack commitment. What are you afraid of? Our fears are often worse in our heads than they are when they really happen.

3) Tune in to your inner wisdom and improve your self awareness. What makes you happy? Where do you want to be in 2 years time? 5 years time?

4) Have clear goals and make sure you spend a little bit of time every day working towards these goals, no matter how small the tasks. We all need to feel we have purpose in our lives.

5) Examine your beliefs around being more reliable and getting involved when life gets messy. Many people have negative thoughts around having to deal with emotional issues of others, hardships in life and difficult situations. These people tend to dabble around the edges and never get involved. You will have a lot more self respect if you “man-up/woman-up” and do the right thing instead of protecting yourself. Being supportive, being there in a crisis and being a problem solver increases self confidence and self belief. Dabblers rarely learn these skills because they play it safe.

6) Mature, balanced adults rarely disappear when the going gets tough. They believe they can make a difference and believe in their abilities. Do you believe in yourself? Do you believe you have the skills to carry a project through to the end? Do you tell yourself that no matter what comes your way, you will find a way around it? This is the talk of successful winners.

7) Learning to stand alone, have clear opinions, make mistakes and learn as we go is a great approach to life. Dabblers are frightened of life. Doers dive right in, they know they can handle stress and pressure even if they don’t exactly enjoy it.

Dabblers think they are doing themselves favours by tiptoeing around the edges of life. Instead, they are numbing their effectiveness and end up living a passive life with very few highs. Perhaps they miss the real lows as well but there is a high price to pay for this attitude in life. They will never learn the skills of resilience, self belief and the exhilaration of overcoming the odds.

Mandy X

Photo by symphony of love

Photo by symphony of love