The Power of Uncertainty. . .
Life is filled with uncertainty and worries about the future. While many things remain outside your control, your mindset is key to coping with difficult circumstances and confidently facing the unknown.
While we may not wish to acknowledge it, uncertainty is a natural and unavoidable part of life. Very little about our lives is constant or totally certain, and while we have control over many things, we can’t control everything that happens to us.
To cope with all this uncertainty, many of us use worrying as a tool for trying to predict the future and avoid nasty surprises. Worrying can make it seem like you have some control over uncertain circumstances. Maybe if you just agonize over a problem long enough, just think through every possibility, or read every opinion online, you’ll find a solution and be able to control the outcome. Unfortunately, none of this works.
Much about life is uncertain at the moment—and many things remain outside of your control. But while you can’t control the spread of a virus, the recovery of the economy, or whether you’ll have a pay check next week, you’re not totally powerless. Whatever your fears or personal circumstances, instead of worrying about the uncontrollable, try to refocus your mind on taking action over the aspects that are within your control.
No matter how much you strive to eliminate doubt and volatility from your life, the truth is you already accept a lot of uncertainty every day. Each time you cross a street, get behind the wheel of a car, or eat takeout or restaurant food you’re accepting a level of uncertainty. You’re trusting that the traffic will stop, you won’t have an accident, and everything you’re eating is safe.
The chances of something bad happening in these circumstances is small, so you accept the risk and move on without requiring certainty. If you’re religious, you also likely accept some doubt and uncertainty as part of your faith.
As many of us have been taught or learned over time – life is uncertain and that often leads the mind to worry. One of the surest ways to avoid worrying about the future is to focus on the present. Instead of trying to predict what might happen, switch your attention to what’s happening right now. By being fully connected to the present, you can interrupt the negative assumptions/feelings and catastrophic predictions running through your mind.
Remember this – If you aren’t in the moment, you are either looking forward to uncertainty, or back to pain and regret.
Peace and Love, Jim