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Are You a Stabilizer or Do you Know Someone Who Is?

You all probably know someone who is “The Stabilizer.”

There is a good chance that it is your mother or your father. But it can also be that guy at work who is always willing to put in overtime or pick up the slack on any project. Or that gal at the gym, who takes the same classes, at the same time, doing the same workout each day, but is always willing to spot for you when you need her to.

Either way, Stabilizers are dependable, reliable people you can always count on to lend a hand. Stabilizers are driven by order, and sense of duty and responsibility. A stabilizer feels the best way to show that he or she cares, is by providing an orderly and secure life for themselves and those they care most about.

As you might imagine stabilizers crave stability. They tend to work for the same company, stay in the same relationship, and live in the same neighborhood with little or no desire for change. Stabilizers are not big risk takers; they are cautious and traditional in their values. Their actions and decision-making are always practical and sensible. It is not unusual for stabilizers to remain in one job, or at least one line of work, throughout their entire careers, because they need a very solid and compelling reason for making changes.

Stabilizers love to do for others. They will always do “what is expected” of them, and you can count on a stabilizer to always finish what he or she has started.

Stabilizers may not have invented the work ethic, but they live by it. They believe in the benefit of hard work and its ability to build character. They also believe that hard work is the cornerstone of financial security in life and that working harder than others will ultimately lead to recognition and advancement.

Why Stabilizers Do What They Do 

The desire to be a “stabilizer type” is rooted in the inward focus of the left-brain.

This part of the brain likes to sort what it experiences into very black and white categories. This is how Stabilizers decide what is or isn’t safe for them. For example, if you ask them to describe an experience, they will likely tell you whether it was “good” or “bad.”

They need to know where something fits before they know how to respond to it. Television personality Martha Stewart is probably a Stabilizer. She was well-known for ending segments of her show with “and that’s a good thing.”  Stabilizers tend to not question their own motives, or look for deeper meanings in things, or about why they feel the way they do. A common response is “That’s just the way I am wired.”

The “way they are” is their security blanket. Anyone trying to change them is considered a threat to their very existence. The slightest suggestion that there could be an improvement in a relationship or experience, by doing something differently, can be considered an attack. They see things from a simplistic point of view. If something upsets me, it’s “bad.” If it makes me happy, it’s “good.” There are few if any shades of gray for the stabilizer personality type.

A need for security is the driving force of the Stabilizer’s personality. They require a sense of belonging in all personal as well as professional interactions. Stabilizers are traditionalists and have a deep need to maintain a sense of history and continuity in their lives.

They value ritual and ceremony and insist on building and maintaining family traditions. Like the guards at Buckingham Palace, Stabilizers believe they must preserve the status quo, and what is new, foreign and therefore potentially dangerous, never gets past the gates. A Stabilizer will rarely try anything new, without a calculated series of steps along the way. Only when each step proves to be safe, will he or she continue to the next.

The brain of the Stabilizer is wired to easily recall facts and details. They excel at rote learning and solving technical or mechanical problems. Like a kind of living database, they store information in an ordered and logical system and retrieve facts even from personal experience in an impersonal fashion. They like things to be said in an accurate, no-frills manner and they say what they mean and mean what they say.

We may not all be stabilizers, and to some of us, they may sound a little stiff and boring, but your life could easily spin out of control if you do not have one or two in it.


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