I lean; open the window, to feel the breeze rise up through my chest, and touch my cheeks. Dogs wander; they rule the streets in the darkness below.
As sirens pass, I lay in bed, in arms that once protected me. Now; harbingers. Of pain. Of fear. Of broken promises. They serve as snares that entrap me.
And if you were to ask me why I shake in your arms in the night, I would confess it was the cold of the open window. Convinced you are satisfied with the explanation, I would return to cry myself into sweet slumber.
Uncertainty, it’s a wonderful thing.
It ensures that you live out a fascinating and astonishing life, rather than a mundane one. With every day different, you can be sure you should continue on going because there is so much to see and do.
And yet, it’s so commonly associated with anxiety because anxiety requires it for its very definition. But the two are not interchangeable. Just because you are uncertain of something, does not mean you must be anxious of it.
Uncertainty, refers only to the unknown state or outcome, of future events. Anxiety, refers to the negative feelings most commonly associated with uncertainty. So what happens then, if we remove anxiety, and instead explore uncertainty?
Humans innately strive for the illusion of control; the ability to steer your car down a particular fork in the road, to lead you to pastures new. The problem being that while in theory this seems pleasant, and very deterministic; life is much more chaotic – and while you can choose which road you travel, the problem is your field of vision is foggy at best. So while you may choose the nicer, more well maintained road – you could find that as soon as your on it, there are more obstacles in your way; roadworks or the cars of others that slow you down and bring you to a halt. Perhaps the cars that drove down the nice path did so, because they liked the seaside view next to it. But maybe you don’t like the sea.
So while it’s nice to think you’re in control and making the right decisions, in reality you’re about as likely to predict the correct outcome as the flip of a coin. So why worry about the uncertainty of it all? It’s tension. All of your choices, every single one you have ever made, has been half chance – and so have everyone else’s.
Let’s suppose your loved one is away on travel, and you’re irrationally afraid for their safety. Let’s suppose they are already gone, and so you do not have the option of convincing them not to go or packing a bulletproof vest in their suitcase. Now, whether or not their destination is a safe haven or a war-zone, it does not behoove you or anyone to worry or remain anxious for any length of time. You do not have control over this situation. You are uncertain of the outcome, but that does not mean you have to fear it. The outcome will remain the same, regardless of your fear of it. So why worry?
Apply this to the toxicity of self doubt, in any given situation. How many hours could you justly say that you have wasted thinking about events… which never happened? But you thought they might. And so it felt very real. To you. As real as if it had happened, because just like when a real thing happens and it takes its toll, so too will you be tolled as long as you treat fictitious events as though they are true.
So remove this anxiety from your life. Remain in the moment – and if anything, embrace the fleeting nature of it. Embrace that as you try to hold onto the moment, already it has passed. So do not hold on to it – rather, live it. The universe does not have to adhere to your laws of expectation. Nor does it work on the same reference of time. It can change what it’s doing in an instant, just as you can.
Accept uncertainty. It is merely a synonym, for freedom, when it is not necessarily you who is in control.
Another article you may find helpful regarding this topic of abandoning the illusion of control, and not fearing it, can be found here: