I saw this image on my brother’s Facebook page two years ago, and it has always stuck in my mind. My brother and I are not people who post on FB frequently. I’d say we’re highly selective – we limit what we post to things that are fairly important to us. Less is more. No need to post constantly. But more than that, I think we are simply not spending much time on FB. Personally, I feel that there are so many other books, blogs, podcasts, etc. that are a better fit for my time and energy than browsing through Facebook. But nonetheless, I’m not anti-Facebook. Often I’m very grateful to see updates from FB friends and organizations I follow. And sometimes, I see things that really resonate with me, like this image and quote.
What is going on in this picture? Where are these people? How did they get there? Did they have to hike for miles and miles? Did a helicopter drop them down out of the sky? What is it like there? Is that an iceberg? Or a stone cliff? Is it hot or cold? The people are dressed like it’s warm… What does the surface they’re sitting on feel like? Is it smooth? What do they see as they look out? Are they going to jump? Where are they going?
Being comfortable with uncertainty is not a natural instinct for most people, myself included. There’s a need to know where we are going. We want to control nearly everything, to plan out all the details, and to be able to count on what’s going to happen. In reality, that’s just not possible. And when things don’t go as planned, it can create a vast range of emotions, from disappointed to sad, from frustrated to “lost,” like the quote says. Don’t get me wrong, I believe in setting goals and getting clear about what you want – I regularly set goals, write them down, and think about the one-step-at-a-time paths that will lead me to my goals. But you also have to accept uncertainty. Be open to opportunities. Just because things don’t turn out the way you thought they would or the way you wanted them to, doesn’t mean that nothing good came of it. I’m sure many of us can think about things that once meant so much to us that didn’t work out, and we’re really glad they didn’t. Or, think about the things that did work out the way you wanted them to, but the journey to get you there was drastically different than you thought it would be.
It’s about faith, about believing that things will work out, knowing that what is meant to be will be. But this doesn’t mean that you have to settle for things because apparently “that’s what was meant to be.” One of my favorite authors Jen Sincero makes a great point when she says, “It's meant to be if you desire it.” You don’t necessarily need to know how what you desire will come to be, but have faith that if you desire it, and you’re working toward it, it will come. Jen encourages her readers to get really comfortable with uncertainty, be open to possibilities, and do something scary. Taking action that scares you means you are committed to the success of what you desire.
Over the last few years, I have gotten a lot better about not needing to control everything and accepting uncertainty, although it doesn’t always come natural to me. Following my senses helps me be comfortable with uncertainty. I think about the present, what is around me right now. I am ok today. At this moment, I have everything I need right now, there is so much good in my life that I am experiencing right now, and I know that more good things are coming my way.