Don’t you wish you were in control of everything around you? BUT, it is clear that the world is not operating predictably. Imagine you are visiting your uncle, you have been on the journey for many hours, and you are getting stressed out already. Suddenly, you face a T-junction, and you aren’t sure which way to go. Since you have no means of communicating with him, if you are fortunate, you will get to your uncle’s house; likewise, you might end up starting a journey of no end if you are unlucky. Have you ever been in this kind of situation? Here, you have limited knowledge of the future outcome of a decision you want to take. This is called UNCERTAINTY.
As defined by Collins dictionary, Uncertainty is a state of doubt about the future or the right thing to do. This is a state of doubt, hesitancy, unpredictability, indeterminacy, and indecision.
There are some things that you are very sure of, for example, if today is Tuesday, tomorrow will be Wednesday. At the same time, there are other things that you are not really sure of. For instance, whether it will rain tomorrow or not. I call it a lack of sureness of an event. It might involve important events that will shape your future.
Uncertainty has wide applications, including gambling and selecting your course of study and other examples where there is an inability to foretell consequences or outcomes because there is a lack of knowledge on the right decision to make. It is, however, closely related to RISK, but they are different.
Here is the difference:
From experience, one imagines risk without knowing if it will happen or not. For example, when you drive to work, you know you are at risk of dying, that’s why you’ll be at the alert of the wear of your tires and their pressure, but you don’t know if it’s going to happen. On the other hand, uncertainty is something we do not prepare for. For example, you tuned up your radio, and you hear that a dam has broken or that a 25m high wave is coming into the valley you are facing. Although you might have seen it in a movie, you never anticipated it!
The question remains – Is there a way to cope with Uncertainty?
Well, uncertainty is inherently destabilising and anxiety-inducing. It is, therefore, difficult to cope during this time. I’ve, however, suggested some things to do to be able to cope during these times. Let’s go.
On 15th July 2009, a US Aircraft collided with birds leading to the breakdown of both engines over New York City. Chesley Sullenberger managed to land the aircraft on the Hudson. After 5 minutes without casualties, he explained that he could achieve this because he had imagined the scenario on previous flights and considered what to do in such a situation. Imagining scenarios will allow you to prepare for them mentally, so when they happen, you’d know what to do.
Also, I suggest that you start seeing the world as it is and not as you would like it to be. Don’t waste your time feeling guilty about what you have done. Instead, invest your time developing your ability to deal with the unexpected since you cannot predict the future. Also, consider that anything is possible: the worst and the best!
Learn from your mistakes; consider your failures as an element of success. Have you ever failed in achieving something? It’s because you tried it and that’s fine. Two options are possible for each experience: either your idea was wrong or right, and you gained experience. In any case, you were a winner. It’s also essential that you start with the fact that ideal situations will never present themselves in an obvious way.
It’s also a good practice to take breaks during uncertainty. It is always interesting to give your brain time to reorder your thought and see things more discerningly during a creative process.
Uncertainty, when it becomes heavy, can quickly affect your morale, and it reminds us of the harsh reality that the world itself is uncertain. Using the suggested ways of coping with uncertainty can help reduce its destabilizing power.