5 Tips for Working with Uncertainty to Benefit Your Mental and Emotional Health
It is easy to be addicted to predictability and certainty. Everything we learn about confidence and success revolves around knowing the right answer, feeling safe and secure in the outer world, and being able to predict what will happen next with reasonable accuracy. However, nothing in the outside world suggests that relying on predictability is a good strategy for feeling secure. From a nine-year stint as a nomad, and a recent face-your-mortality health event here’s what I have learned for how to stay well when nothing is certain.
1. Drop the Temptation to Worry: Focus on the present moment. Nothing else matters. Focusing on turning the clock back to the way things were is living in the past. The present moment offers you a chance to strengthen your personal purpose and sense of peace. Focusing on the future or worrying about it creates unnecessary stress. To stay in charge of your mental and emotional wellness situate yourself in the present and train your focus (mind) to be at peace with what is presented in the moment. Anything else creates anxiety and depletes your sense of control. You always have control over what you do, feel, or say next. You can use your emotions to change your focus.
It wasn’t in my life plan (pretending I had one) to be nomadic so when I found myself in my car with what was left of my belongings, I had to pay attention to what I focused on. Otherwise, depression was a short slippery downward ride away.
2. Learn from the Process: When your energy is depleted by the uncertainty of stress, applying mental will to take life back to the way things were is ignoring the chance to create the future using the conditions you are in. Hindsight is 20/20 and foresight is 80/20 meaning if you use a wide enough lens and open mind, you’ll have a pretty good chance of sensing what’s coming. However, neither hindsight nor foresight is accessible when fear is holding the steering wheel. Having the courage and awareness to replace fear with curiosity gives you access to learning from the past, to sit in the neutral zone where you’ll gain insight for what to do next. At all times, the heart stays calm, your mind is reflective, and your intellectual will takes a back seat to observe what is happening in the moment. Observe. Stay…