31 July 2022

Navigating Uncertainty 

Tyler Barnett

Anxiety is fear, plain and simple, and uncertainty is fear of the unknown. Fear stems from a lack of clarity, or being unable to identify the cause of uncertainty. While anxiety arises out of a feeling of helplessness. This is due to a belief that we lack the resources to effect change. Moreover, it points to a lack of faith in ourselves, our abilities, and our self-worth. But it also points to something deeper; a lack of faith in a higher order. And that is, consciousness. Consciousness is pure potential. What we are at our core is consciousness suspended in a state of potentiality. But it is beyond our conscious perception of reality. Thus, the root cause of our fear is a lack of understanding who we are. So the problem is that we identify with a false identity. That is to say, a false sense of reality and who we are.

For the most part we are responsible for our own fate through the choices we make. Our choices, in turn, reflect our state of awareness. Although there is a grandeur scheme at play. And that is consciousness. What we mean by this is that there is a Universal Intelligence that runs through all things. Another word for it is Source Energy. This is consciousness, and this is who we are at our core. It is the potential itself. So our aim is to align with this Source. To flow with it. Because we are potential, suspended in a potentiated state. But in order for us to tap into this Source we must first surrender to it. To do so, we must relinquish control over a false identification. That is a false reality of what is and who we are.

Our perception of who we are is dependent on our awareness. Our awareness is our state of consciousness. Thus, our perception has a direct correlation with our sense of reality. Which affects how we respond to situations. So how can we navigate uncertainty? How can we move through confusion to find clarity, resolution, and peace? To navigate uncertainty we need to acknowledge that we are consciousness itself. Thus, all potentialities that exist are available to us. It is only a matter of perception that separates us from it. As uncertainty is fear, it stems from a perception of lack. Or, division. That’s the metaphysical explanation. On a practical level we must learn how to differentiate between fact and fiction.

At this point, we understand that we are consciousness encapsulated   within potential itself. But how do we access this Unlimited Source? How do we break through fear and uncertainty? We do so by acknowledging Truth. For Truth is the source of consciousness. But one of the biggest barriers to our evolution lies in our inability to separate fact from fiction. As a starting point, we must get to the root cause of our fear in any given circumstance. What is the underlying fear that surrounds this uncertainty? Anxiety exists because there is an underlying fear perpetuating it. Why do I fear uncertainty? On what level does this fear exist for me? Is it a security need? Is it an ego need? Is it a spiritual need? By recognising the origin of fear itself we minimise the intensity of it. Thus, it is important that we understand what fear is.

Most fears are nothing more than fictitious stories we create about the fear itself. Rarely is one in actual danger which would warrant legitimate fear. Life and death situations warrant fear. Whereas anticipating what may or may not happen in the future does not warrant fear. This is where fear turns into anxiety, because there is uncertainty. Fear is a security mechanism that’s purpose is to alert us to danger. But the problem is our mind is ego identified. Meaning, it feeds on drama, and so conceives fictitious fears. So we must be conscious of this fact. That, for the most part, fear is an illusion. Its purpose is to protect us, to make us feel safe. But because this perception has no basis in Truth, it has the opposite effect. The solution is to dispel the myth.

To dispel the myth we need clarity. Clarity gives us Truth but also the confidence to make effective decisions. Thereby eliminating uncertainty. A practical way to go about this is to determine our values and our needs. This is important on two levels. The first is that it gives us a process for prioritisation and helps us to see Truth. The second is that it gives us a focus. Without focus, fear exists as an abstract anxiety that lingers in the unconscious. It will continue to loop and intensify until we acknowledge it on a conscious level.

This affects us on a psychological, emotional, and physical level also. So the purpose of fear, in this context, is actually to bring our attention to something. That is to say, to make us more aware. If we remain unaware of our unconscious fears they manifest as external problems in our life. Our fears wreak havoc and cause chaos because the aim is to disrupt our unconsciousness. To make us more conscious. Thus, fear facilitates our awareness, which gives us a focus, and this is the greatest agent for change.

Change represents evolution. Our evolution depends on our awareness of Truth so that we can fulfil our potential. That is to say, evolve into a higher level of consciousness. Which is also to have a higher duty so to speak, to make a contribution or leave a legacy that benefits the greater good. Without a strong value system we are aimless. Moreover we succumb to confusion and we become uncertain. Then fear sets in. We perceive lack because we’re entrenched in separateness. Thus, the lesson of uncertainty is to realise the illusion of fear. That is, to understand that it is nothing more than a defence mechanism intended to protect us. Our purpose then is to Truth. Even so, we need a practical means to navigate fear when it arises.

Strategies For Navigating Uncertainty 

Pinpoint something specific to focus on. Direct your focus toward a small achievable task. For instance, you are uncertain about your purpose in life. Here is a guide to help navigate uncertainty.

1. Acceptance | Accept your situation as it is. Acknowledge that this is a time of transition, discovery, and opportunity. 

2. Discovery | What do you like doing? If you had no restrictions what would you choose to do and why? Write out a list of these things and then look for recurring themes, clues, or hints. What do you value most and why? What do you want to experience and why? 

3. Opportunity | What opportunities exist for you to experience what you desire? How can you create/cultivate more opportunities to do the things you want to do? Start with small practical steps as these form the building blocks of life. For example, you desire to experience more nature. But you live in the city. So, prioritise daily walks in the park or visit gardens or national parks at the weekend.

This is another useful strategy to use when you feel anxiety or fear creeping in. Stop, and acknowledge the thought. Ask yourself: What is the lesson or opportunity here?

Read and contemplate the following statements until you understand them.

I acknowledge these feelings of anxiety and fear within me. I accept this as the result of a thought- in-motion that is creating these emotions within me.  

Fear is not my enemy, but my teacher. It offers the means for clarity and transformation.

I have the necessary tools to navigate uncertainty. I know that every experience is an opportunity to evolve and change.

In times of uncertainty, the Values Audit is an efficient way to clarify your values and needs. It’s a quick way to reset your focus, get back on track, and stay grounded on what matters in life.

Values Audit

Answer the following questions:

  • What is most important to you?
  • What inspires you the most?
  • What do you spend most of your time doing?
  • Your greatest asset?
  • Your greatest liability?
  • Your greatest fear?
  • Best outcome?
  • Most pressing need right now?
  • Biggest obstacle now?
  • Best resource or skill to leverage?
  • Highest vision you see for yourself?
  • Where am I?
  • Where am I heading?
  • Where do I want to be?
  • Are my actions inline with the direction I want to go?
  • How am I going to get there?
  • What do I need?
  • Who or what does this involve?

From these answers write out a Purpose Plan and create an Execution Map of what you need to do to get to where you want to be. Keep this short and simple. Define long-term intentions for the Best outcome and Where am I heading questions. But for all other questions work within a three month range for your intentions and actions.

 

EXAMPLE: 

Answer the following questions:

What is most important to you? Freedom. Autonomy.

What inspires you the most? Integrity. Individuality. 

What do you spend most of your time doing? Reading & writing.

Your greatest asset? Honesty.

Your greatest liability? Impulsiveness.

Your greatest fear? Not being self-sufficient and needing to rely on others.

Best outcome? Being self-sufficient and having the skills/resources/courage to self-actualise. 

Most pressing need right now? Money. 

Biggest obstacle now? Living arrangement. Less than ideal, needing to be in a particular place to earn the money needed for autonomy. 

Best resource or skill to leverage? Living arrangement. Lowest cost of living affording the means to save funds for autonomy. 

Highest vision you see for yourself? Independent artist.

Where am I? In a situation where I need to learn acceptance, patience, gratitude, and priorities. To see a project through to completion. Establishing a solid foundation for the future. Gathering funds for the next step.

Where am I heading? A position of autonomy, self-sufficiency, and freedom to be able to honour and live by my values.

Where do I want to be? Living in nature.

Are my actions inline with the direction I want to go? Yes. My actions reflect my values of freedom and autonomy.

How am I going to get there? Prioritise. Be open and flexible to other opportunities. 

What do I need? Commitment. Willpower. Organisation. Ingenuity. Planning. Money.

Who or what does this involve? Partner. Institutions. 

Purpose Plan – 

Statement of Purpose | It is my intention to remain focused and steadfast in my plan to gather x amount of funds. I will do so in a manner that is efficient and ethical. For self-sufficiency, autonomy and freedom. I accept my current situation. I acknowledge that this is a transition period. In which I accept my part in creating. I also acknowledge this as a time to gather the necessary skills and resources to move beyond it. I further acknowledge that every situation is an opportunity for growth. Every choice I make moves me closer or further away from my intended purpose. I am committed to changing my situation for the better. While clarity and planning lend focus, I remain open to greater opportunities. To accelerate my evolutionary path to autonomy and freedom.

Execution Map – 

  • When feelings of uncertainty arise. Consult the Values Audit, Purpose Plan, and Execution Map.
  • Most important things to remember. Acceptance, commitment, and flexibility are assets. Every moment is an opportunity to learn and grow.
  • Most useful thoughts to keep in mind: gratitude. Faith, awareness, and diligence create the circumstances for opportunities to arise.
  • Most important action. Conserving money while remaining faithful to my values.
  • Current estimated timeframe for next stage: two to three months.
  • Greatest pitfalls to be aware of: overspending. Complacency.  
  • Greatest opportunity to be aware of. Other income streams and resources to leverage.
  • What is the key lesson from this situation? Live within your means for the sake of freedom and autonomy. Every action has consequences. Every decision is a choice. We must accept responsibility.
  • Most important values to remember: autonomy is freedom which is the ultimate commodity.   
  • Last thought: sacrifice is necessary for redemption.

Create an outline for your specific situation. For instance, if you’re planning on changing jobs or moving to another place to live. List out the specific steps so that you are clear on what you need to do, when, and why.

Revisit the Values Audit, Purpose Plan, and the Execution Map whenever fear arises. Or when you need a clear road map to stay focused.