Emerge and Spread Your Wings

Sitting With Uncertainty

Have you found yourself in that uncomfortable in-between place recently? It may be due to an imminent change ahead, or waiting on news, or a decision. Something outside your control. I find it an difficult place to be. I notice my anxiety building, feelings of frustration rising and angst at the next step ahead being out of my control. Sitting with uncertainty can be a challenge. A number of my supervisees have raised this situation recently and we explored how to manage this in-between space.

Here are a few strategies that work when I am sitting with uncertainty;

Voicing my frustration, naming it, acknowledging it either aloud to myself or an empathetic listener

Working out where I can create movement. Often I experience body tension resulting from forced inaction. I find that moving my body through walking, yoga, swimming or other activity helps with this tension.

Making space to brainstorm – down-loading my brain

Decluttering spaces – along with the brain declutter, I find sorting out cupboards or desks helps me clear my thoughts

Distracting myself with other things, for instance catching up with friends, getting fresh perspectives

Treating myself kindly – putting in place more self care, exercise, better nutrition

Take action where I can – I find one small project/task I can move ahead on and completing this helps me feel less helpless

[Important Note: While a short wait for a decision can be stressful, sometimes we find ourselves in a place of ongoing uncertainty, for instance in a situation of chronic illness, or caring for a loved one who is unwell. If you are in a situation like this it is really important to acknowledge the toll of ongoing stress. For the sake of your health ongoing uncertainty cannot be managed with a “business as usual” approach. This is the time to gather your support systems, reduce your expectations and where necessary seek specialist help through counselling, your GP or EAP scheme.]

However, if you are currently in a short term holding pattern allow for the potential.  Often times, dwelling with the discomfort forces us to develop more insight into what really matters. An enforced pause has its own value. We can’t always develop this clarity if we are constantly moving forward.

If you are facing changes in your work place these blogs might be of interest: Moving Right Along and  Managing Transitions. Feeling overwhelmed in this busy end of the year? Have a look at my Emerge From Overwhelm e-course for a step-by-step process for getting unstuck.