Embracing the unknown: How accepting uncertainty puts you back in control

Alex Mathers


Humans have had an uncomfortable relationship with uncertainty since we were knocking stones together to create sparks.


Not knowing.

We don’t know what will happen next.

Doesn’t sound like too much of a big deal, right?

But uncertainty has brought with it untold struggles for humans.

It’s made us nervous, avoidant and unwilling to try new things and explore our potential.

If you’ve ever been nervous about a seemingly important decision, you’ll know uncertainty’s power over us.

Uncertainty has made me especially fearful, worrying about upcoming meetings, events and interviews. If I didn’t know what I was going to say in the moment to sound clever and funny and wise, how could I feel in control of my life?

This made me either avoid the thing entirely or tighten up and feel more anxious.

It’s also held me back creatively. I didn’t write that book I wanted to write because I didn’t know what it would look like, and I didn’t know whether it would be a success or not.

I didn’t know.

Incomplete information.

And that stopped me.

And it stops many of us.

Obviously, it’s essential to have some reserve about the choices we make to save us from doing something stupid.

That’s why this fear appears in the first place.

But often, it gets in the way more than it helps. It’s overkill.

It’s a funny phenomenon, really — one that goes hand in hand with our ability to be aware.

We do this funny thing where we fabricate the illusion of a past and a future.

It really is a fabrication, just like we create so many other things with our minds.

These things exist in theory but not in reality.

There’s a disconnect.

It’s like we have this idea in our heads of what the future could look like, but never receive the confirmation we’re looking for. Because as soon…