| Peter Cook
Why do we feel like we feel?
If there is one thing to be said for this year, then it is the fact that everything is ‘uncertain.'
Of course, uncertainty was always present in everyday life, but this year it is as if a bright light is shining right on it: Nobody knows what will happen next.
In these times, we feel uncertain about our job, finances, economy, relationships with others, and our physical health.
We don’t want to feel this way!
It is much better when things are tidy, secure, and predictable. There is an underlying fear underneath everything we do, and it makes us feel stressed and anxious.
How to cope with uncertainty and underlying fear
- ‘There are things that I can control.’
You can’t control the spread of the virus or even your job security, but you can manage your own actions.
You can still network your contacts to search for new opportunities or take the necessary precautions to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.
The keywords here are ‘active problem-solving,’ not worrying and pondering over everything that can possibly go wrong.
Even if you can do absolutely nothing, you can still allow yourself to experience uncertainty and face up to how you feel. It is possible to control your attitude and your emotional responses to your circumstances.
- It is not to say outcomes of uncertainty will always be bad.
Yes, of course, there are adverse outcomes for every situation, but what if this uncertainty is a catalyst for a new period in your life?
Another way to cope, therefore, is to shift your focus. Let go of negative behaviors and free up your time for more practical purposes. Ask yourself: ‘What if something great lies around the bend? What can I do to prepare?’
- Have a plan!
Life is uncertain. It is likely to stay that way, even after the COVID pandemic is over.
Uncertainty does not mean you should be robbed of having a plan.
Save for a rainy day, prepare a kit if you live in a hurricane area, or have a health plan. One can’t plan for every possible scenario, but it won’t hurt to think now and then of what you can put in place for the future.
- Today is a gift
Avoid worrying about the future by focusing on the present!
Instead of saying 'This or that might happen,' rather say, 'This is happening right now!' If you are connected to the present, you can interrupt all those negative assumptions and feelings.
Christians, of course, have another surety in uncertain times. We know that Jesus is always sure and certain. He hasn’t changed in thousands of years.
Charles Spurgeon wrote in a commentary on Habakkuk 2:1-4 that we have to stay on the watch-tower and wait on Him to speak to us. He states it beautifully:
'Wrestle with the angel at the brook Jabbok, go to the top of your mount, Carmel! Cry unto the Lord … until the thirsty earth is refreshed with rain.'
Contact us at Largest Heart if you’ve got uncertainty on your mind, and you don't know how to cope. We can put you in contact with people that can help.