The Year of Uncertainty and Change
Image source: John Forson, Unsplash
2020.The year which we won’t forget. But what especially to remember from it?
It is that time of the year again. As the New Year approaches, people usually reflect on what they have achieved and what should be remembered from the soon-ending year. Even this year of 2020 was something none of us asked for, there is a lot to learn from it. During many of our lifetimes, there has not been any other year in which so many people around the world shared something so much in common. One of the most challenging new aspects with which we have needed to cope (especially people from developed countries) has been that for the first time in our adult life the freedom of choice was taken so radically away from us.
Whereas this freedom of choice and spontaneity was deprived from us, another very fundamental part of our lives changed at the same time. The level of control. On one hand, we needed to adjust our life based on limitations and restrictions and take them as given. This way, the level of control increased in our lives, superficially. On the other hand, the level of control decreased more profoundly. Some of us experienced a tremendous loss; many people lost a loved one, a job, or their health, which kicked off a personal crisis within us. This kind of experience makes us feel that we lose control of our life, at least momentarily. This year, many of us have felt that the fundamental building blocks have crumbled at some level. But is there anything positive in all of this, that we should actually bolster to become an even more significant part of our next year?
Embrace the unknown to face the full spectrum that your own life has to offer
Let’s take a jump 365 days back in time. Even though there was no clue about what kind of year we all will be facing soon, the very same aspects; freedom and control were both very present in all of our lives. However, we all have very different, personal relationships with these two. Some of us find tremendous comfort and safety from certainty and control as prime guidelines through the days of our lives. If life has always been guided by the same very specific routines and strong control over things, breaking habits might feel like a jump into deep dark waters. Something that you want to avoid at all costs.
This year has thrown a curveball to break many of these routines and limitations on how to live our daily lives, which we have created unconsciously over time. But why those routines have become so dear to most of us? The answer is the fear of the unknown. People start to control their life based on their beliefs on how it is safe and comfortable to live. However, this is not the way to face the full spectrum that the world and your own personal life has to offer.
The only way to become fully alive and become introduced to your own full potential and best version of yourself is to face your fears and embrace the unknown.
The year 2020 has been a constant survival battle for many. But for those who are so priviledged that they have had a chance also to reflect on what could be learned from all of this, the year could have served as an eye-opening experience. While you are forced to face loss, change, and uncertainty, you can also face your biggest fears and overcome them. If you are curious to explore your real potential and how to take full advantage of the unknown and turn your fears into your source of power, it is advisable to start exploring things that operate currently as fences and limitations in your life.
‘’Be honest with yourself: In which part of your life the control plays the most determinant part, and challenge exactly that part of yourself.’’
Strengthen your self-awareness to grow through your fears
Those who consider themselves perfectionists, should ask themselves if, in fact, they are afraid of their own imperfections? That kind of person can face their fear by learning to mess things up intentionally and face the consequences, and finally realizing that the world does not end there. If, in turn, you follow some strict lifestyle, ask yourself why it gives you safety and comfort to stick with it? Live one month by doing the exact opposite, and explore how it feels like to face the unknown and give up on the control and safety that your strict lifestyle has offered to you.
Gravitate intentionally towards situations where you need to learn to laugh at yourself and give up control. If you have always stuck with a certain professional area and relied on your knowledge in that specific field, join a group discussion focused on the topic you know nothing about. This way you cannot hide behind your expertise, but you have to expose your lack of knowledge and this way, lack of control.
If you have always thought that you are not brave or capable enough to do something, that is exactly what you should go after. Be aware of what kind of story you tell about yourself to the most important audience; to yourself.
Use the crisis as a fast-track to your dreams
This kind of process of personal growth is more natural result of a certain life crisis into which you were thrown involuntarily. In the midst of it, it might feel like your world is crashing down, but afterwards, the very same people usually express how thankful they now are as the crisis made them change a perspective on ‘’what really matters in life’’. The crisis often serves as a push to pursue something they had always dreamed of but were too afraid to try.
Many people prefer to live every year like the previous one, because of fear of unknown. But if you are brave enough, start looking for an answer to the questions of: What else life could be, What else I could be?
We should not wait around for some horrible crisis to hit us before we start living our lives as fullest as it can be. We can start gravitating little by little towards our fears by just starting to challenge ourselves intentionally. As we are scared of things that we feel we cannot fully predict or control, the only way of actually feeling profound peace and balance can be achieved by giving up on control.
As the year 2020 soon comes to an end, we should not try to forget all about it. Instead, let’s embrace the unknown and the change even more by turning them into fuel for our next year’s endeavors. Giving up on control in things we want to keep the most, is the best thing we can do to ourselves in 2021!