Have you noticed that living in the unknown can sometimes feel worse than receiving actual bad news? It can feel really unsettling, it can evoke a loss of control, and challenge the illusion that we are in charge.
However, over the years I have learnt that if I am willing to keep breathing and stay with this feeling, there is also a place within the unknown that is exhilarating, fresh, and filled with potential and choice.
If I am able to move away from overthinking the situation, living in the unknown can be a fantastic opportunity for personal, professional and creative growth. Living in the unknown provides me with the opportunity to examine what is most important to me and help me explore my situation from a different perspective.
Here are some thoughts on how you can open yourself up to living in the unknown:
- Practice gratitude; a daily gratitude practice can shift your mood faster than anything else.
- Define what happiness really means to you.
- Identify what anchors you have and what you really need to nourish yourself.
- Tap into your reflective side: step back and take time to explore your fears and barriers to what you want to achieve.
- Pause and examine how you see things: Are you a glass half full or a glass half empty person?
- Build a support network: get comfortable asking for and receiving help.
- Imagine the possibilities: are you open to expanding into an even better life/job/relationship than you thought possible?
- Serve others. Nothing pulls us out outside of ourselves faster that working in a place like a soup kitchen.
Try to include people with different ways of seeing the world in your life. They will open your eyes to new possibilities. Try doing doing things without a plan. Speak up in that meeting without overthinking your idea. Go for a walk in a new environment without a map. Visit shops, museums and galleries you would not normally go to.
If you can find the enjoyment in these new activities, then it is easier to start letting go of control in some of the more tightly managed parts of your life.
Remember the words of Margaret Attwood:
“If I waited for perfection, I would never write a word.”