Motivation Monday: Uncertainty

In the world of science, there is no definite measurement.  In any quantity, there is what we call an uncertainty.  In a simple example, let’s say you were using a ruler to measure the length of a rope.  You line up the rope along the ruler, and take a reading.  But how sure are you that the rope was perfectly lined up with the end of the ruler? How certain are you that your reading was correct? There is always uncertainty.  It extends more broadly in life.

I’m at a point in my life where I’ve been in the working world for almost a decade.  In that time I’ve done business, administration, performing, creative work, and a thousand other small things.  I’ve had a lot of variability in what I’ve done, which to me is a good thing, because one of my driving principles is to experience new situations. But as I get to this point in my career, I wonder if the time I’ve put into things was wasted.  Would it have been better to start in one career track and stick with it? Or is it better to be a jack of all trades? I’m happy with the skill set I’ve built, and with the job I have, but how do I know where I’m heading?

The answer is that I don’t have an answer.  I am full of uncertainty about my life.  In one year, 5 years, 10 years, I may be somewhere very different.  But is not knowing a bad thing? I wonder if it would be worse to know exactly where you are headed, exactly what is coming next, every year for the next 30.  I think that would drive me crazy. It seems uncertainty is the only option.

I imagine everyone feels this way. We all have dreams, goals, aspirations, and an idea of where we want our life to go.  But there are times where you feel like you have no control, or you don’t exactly know where you’re going to end up.   The uncertainty can be scary, but also exhilarating.  It gives a sense of adventure, knowing that you have to face the world with just your head and your own two hands. Even though the floor could fall out from under you any second, and it often will, what’s important is trusting in yourself to get back up and keep going.

The uncertainty is a fact of life, and it’s easy to let it bother you and make you worry about the future.  For the things I’ll have to face, will I be good enough? Smart enough? Strong enough? But I guess there comes a point where you realize that you’ve been through enough that you know you’ll land on your feet no matter what life throws at you.

It’s okay to be uncertain, everyone else is.  But don’t let it stop you from growing, changing, and taking risks.  The real tragedy is giving up, or trying to keep your life from changing just because you want certainty.  Ten years ago, I never would have guessed where I would end up, or how I would get here, but I know that right now, I’m happy.

I’m sure I’ll feel the same ten years from now.



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