Our attitude towards life:
As humans, we’re fascinated with the unknown but are also deathly afraid of it. We even jump into life changing activities like parenthood without so much as a guarantee of anything. But, is there any way we can really fool proof our lives?
Everything in life comes with uncertainty. We don’t know anything for sure, isn’t it? For us to live a happy life though, we crave a good mix of novelty and certainty. Also, as humans, we have this inherent curiosity that’s born out of our dislike for “not knowing”. That motivation to find out anything unknown to us leads to exploration.
Why do we like taking risks?
Taking a risk is acting inspite of knowing the outcomes and the probabilities of a favorable outcome. It’s like gambling in the casino. Whereas uncertainty is knowing the outcomes but NOT knowing the probabilities of a favorable outcome.
We don’t like taking risks, because we are afraid to be labeled irresponsible. We don’t like taking risks because of three main factors – we don’t have the knowhow; we don’t feel in control and there’s just too much at stake. And, we still go ahead and do things that come with uncertainty because we feel prepared and know that we can do our best. Like parenting, which is the biggest roll of dice.
Stress and uncertainty:
Not all uncertainty leads to undesirable outcomes. And a lot of it depends on our attitude and interpretation of events unfolding around us.
The mere perception of lack of control and predictability can significantly change a small event into an unbearable stressor for life.
How to prepare for the unknown:
From a little help from an essential skill called adaptability, we can navigate change and uncertainty. It’s our determination to build a broad database of knowledge and backup plans. It’s our planning that helps us visualize all possible scenarios and outcomes. And, it’s our understanding that we can use other people’s experience as a foundation for our knowledge.
Adaptability is a mindset because we can choose to tell ourselves that it’s okay to:
- Get started without knowing everything
- Not practice for all possible scenarios
- Not know what’s next
- Slow down
- Change course
- Seek help
- Say no
- Redefine success
- Change our mind
Embracing change to overcome fear:
So many of us as adults fear change, don’t we? We’re so comfortable in knowing, in the status quo comfort that life offers. But what if we reprogram our minds to think of change as an essential part of growth?
We can bring strength into any climate of change through hope and by giving ourselves a chance to adapt. Change starts in our minds, in our ability to see change as a necessary hurdle to overcome.
Whether to change our mind, or change our course, we must first start believing in ourselves. And, here’s the bottom line. If we don’t change, life will bulldoze changes onto us.