Managing ambiguity: When responses are unclear Have you ever been presented with a choice between two or more pathways, each of which was completely distinct from the others?
These situations frequently cause us to fear because we feel under pressure to choose a course that we will have to follow forever without turning back. You start to consider the advantages and disadvantages of each choice, worry about what might happen if you make the “wrong” decision, and have trouble sleeping because tomorrow is just one day away from the time when you must decide.
Speaking of tough.
Managing uncertainty is never simple, especially when it involves making a significant life decision like choosing a college, a career, or the location of your next move.
We often wish that we could simply stop time in these circumstances so that we would be better prepared to respond and start moving in one direction or the other.
Unfortunately, the clock keeps going and our minds start to get distracted by ifs, ands, or buts. We start to perceive managing uncertainty as a burden that has been placed on us and from which we are powerless to free ourselves.
CONTENT IN THE MOMENT TO MANAGE UNCERTAINTY I’m aware that this part sounds a little absurd. When you have choices in front of you, how can I possibly expect you to be pleased in the present? There’s a good chance that at least one of these choices has a due date, and you genuinely have no idea what you’re going to do. Maybe I’ll just wing it and make a decision at the last minute, you’ve thought. Some of you say, “I don’t have enough time to effectively arrange my ideas and weigh all of my options.”
If there’s one thing I’ve discovered, it’s that humans find it difficult to deal with ambiguity. I’d even venture to say that the vast majority of us probably don’t handle it very well. Because of how preoccupied with all the potential outcomes our minds have become, we lose sleep over it, our appetites alter, and we change as people.
Breathe, my friend.
I’m also chatting to myself.
I’m seeing that being satisfied with where I am right now is one of the best ways to deal with uncertainty. I’m not referring to the previous ten seconds or the upcoming ten seconds. I’m referring to this exact moment.
Our world moves so quickly that we frequently lose sight of the moment. We become disoriented while dealing with uncertainty because we are disoriented in time. When the solutions aren’t evident to us, we become agitated and start to worry about choosing the appropriate choice.
DOES THERE REALLY EXIST A RIGHT ANSWER? Do you really believe there is a correct response to the uncertainty you are presently experiencing? The response might be yes in various circumstances. However, there might not be a correct response because you might be content with any choice.
The latter scenario tends to cause individuals greater anxiety since it implies that all of your life may depend on a single choice. That’s frightful!
Can I be really open with you for a moment?
I used to find it quite difficult to deal with uncertainty since I was only ever presented with two options: the right and the wrong. I would blame myself for making the incorrect decision if anything didn’t work out. Why did you select this choice if it was the incorrect response, I would ask myself. I started looking for ways I may have known the correct response. I reasoned that if I could figure out where I erred, perhaps it wouldn’t occur again.
I had to learn that having two decent options was OK, even if I could never decide which course to take. Maybe that’s why I ultimately decided to switch schools, degrees, and refocus my efforts.
How to Manage Uncertainty
I want to encourage you to do the following if you are having trouble dealing with uncertainty in your own life right now:
Be mindful of the time you are presently experiencing. Don’t think that there is only one positive course for your life. Own your decisions. If you believe lists to be useful, make some (not stressful) Talk to a trusted person about your choice. Get to a point where you can accept the results. Even if there is no foolproof way to deal with uncertainty in life, there are steps you may take to make yourself feel better. Have faith in the process, have faith in yourself, and be at peace with whatever transpires.
You can do this.