How to Create Your Best Life Despite Uncertainty…

How To Move Forward When You Feel Paralyzed by Uncertainty

Susaye Rattigan | Tiny Buddha


“When you become comfortable with uncertainty, infinite possibilities open up in your life.” ~Eckhart Tolle

A woman in a relationship that is breaking her spirit might remain there for fear of what leaving will bring.

She doesn’t know if she will find another to care for her, and having a warm body is better than having no one. The uncertainty about whether or not she will survive that decision, and be happier for it, keeps her there.

I know the harsh clutches of uncertainty all too well. It wasn’t long ago that I waffled and wavered about every decision I faced, feeling afraid to make one for fear that some mistakes cannot be undone.

I resisted relationships because loving led to marriage and then divorce. I resisted starting my business because seven out of every ten businesses fail. I refused to quit the job because it was the only way I thought I could succeed.

I allowed myself to fall in love only when I was certain that he loved me more and would stay. To ensure that it worked, I planned every detail of the relationship and the wedding.

Feeling doubtful that this relationship was truly the one I wanted, I was unhappy and silently praying for something to happen to help me out. But I stayed the course because at least I knew what would happen next; I had it all planned.

My awakening came when my engagement fell apart and there was nothing that I could do about it. I broke into a million pieces. I lost twenty pounds in one week and wept until there were no more tears.

I had placed a certain level of trust in things working out and was certain that it would. The experience left me paralyzed because “I had it all planned.” What was I supposed to do then?

I woke up daily gasping for air, knowing I’d go to work where I’d help people and come home to a crumbled life. It was then I knew that if I didn’t move I would die.

I fought against the emotional pain of the break-up and decided that I would have no more of it. I quit my two jobs, went home, and began packing my bags.

Two months later I sold my belongings, counted out the little savings I had stashed away for a safety net, and moved back to Jamaica to be with my family.

I had no fear about what would happen; I had been so fearful for so long and life happened anyway. All I knew was that I needed to have a hand in my own life, to be an intentional co-creator of my reality, to accept uncertainty as a friend.

So how do you move forward in uncertainty?

1. Accept that at the root of uncertainty is a fear of failure.

We’re not afraid that we don’t really know what’s going to happen tomorrow. We’re afraid that what happens tomorrow will be so painful that we won’t survive it. We have already created a worst-case scenario in our minds, and the likelihood of it becoming reality is what really keeps us bound, not uncertainty itself.

Action Step: Examine your uncertainty. What lies at its root? What emotion comes up when you think about doing the thing that you’re uncertain about?

2. Understand that failure is a natural part of life, and embracing uncertainty is key to defeating failure.

Everybody fails, and failure holds the best opportunities for growth. When we succeed without experiencing failure, our account is narrow. A person who can speak to both failure and success has a much more textured life and can help others navigate both waters.

For every success story that you hear, there are at least ten stories of failure to READ MORE:

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