Surviving uncertainty during these trying times.

anxiety

Uncertainty.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.

Life is full of uncertainties.

Life always has its uncertainties, but this year everyone has experienced a lot more challenges than usual. The coronavirus and its sudden spread around the world, has been on everyone’s minds. Some people have chosen to ignore the virus, while others have stayed home, hoping they can hide from the virus. The uncertainty isn’t limited to whether you will catch Corvid-19, but also how ill you will become. Death from infections is a very real possibility.

You may be one of the people who has had to work despite the risks. Or possibly you’re one of the people who were laid off. You don’t know when or if you’ll be called back to work, and if you are, what are the risks you are taking. Some people have been able to work from home, which potentially reduces their risk of the disease. But working from home has its uncertainties.

The pandemic has affected most people’s physical health, relationships, finances, and mental health. If they find drugs to treat this illness, or if there’s a vaccine that works, the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus may diminish. But that’s far from certain.

Your attitude towards uncertainty matters.

Life seems more manageable when things move along in a predictable pattern. Everyone needs a certain amount of security. A few unexpected events can be the spice in your life. But too much uncertainty can take you into survival mode. Some people see uncertainty as scary, while other people look to these new times as an opportunity for personal growth and learning new skills.

How can you cope with uncertainty?

Don’t get bogged down in your fear of uncertainty. Look for ways that you can cope with the current challenges.

Accept that uncertainty is a part of life.

What you can’t change, you need to learn to accept. Uncertainty is a part of everyone’s life, and the surest path towards peace and contentment is the one of radical acceptance. Many recovering people have adopted the serenity prayer as a guide to life. The wisdom in life is learning which things you can change and which things you can’t. Those things you can change are where you should apply your efforts. The things that are out of your control, and often that is most everything in your life, those are the things you need to learn to accept. Spending a lot of time insisting that things must be the way you want them takes you away from doing the things you can do.

Learn to manage your worry.

Limit your worrying to the things that may be within your control. Restrict your worry to a limited number of likely possibilities. Do everything you can to prepare for these things. Don’t waste time trying to worry about every possible outcome. The idea that worrying about things can somehow protect you from them is one of the great fallacies of life. Preparation protects you. Stop worrying and start doing the things you need to do.

When uncertain devoid getting into fear.

Fear is not necessarily either a good or bad emotion. It’s how you interpret fear. Fear should tell you there’s a danger, and you need to do something about that danger. Don’t let your fears take control of you. Bravery is feeling the fear but moving forward anyway.

Most fear is based on faulty assumptions. People become afraid that they won’t get something they want. But the reality is that you won’t know whether what you wanted was a good thing until you got it. Another significant cause of fear is the fear of losing something you have. Unfortunately, nothing is permanent, and everything will pass away eventually. Don’t waste the time you have worrying about losing something.

Get into action to overcome uncertainty.

As you move into action, you have less need to worry about things that are out of your control. Take action on the things you can. In times of uncertainty, you need to prepare yourself for what may lie ahead. Learn new skills. Improve your relationships and your social support systems. Work on improving yourself so you will be better prepared for whatever might happen.

Improve your resiliency.

Everyone faces setbacks. Some people seem to get knocked down more often than others. Resiliency is the skill to bounce back from adversity. Don’t lose hope. Cultivate the ability to bounce back regardless of what happens to you. It’s not how many times you are knocked down; it’s how many times you get back up that matters.

How are you coping with uncertainty? Have you discovered any positive coping skills? Please feel free to leave a comment below.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Seven David Joel Miller Books are available now!

My newest book is now available. It was my opportunity to try on a new genre. I’ve been working on this book for several years, but now seem like the right time to publish it.

Story Bureau.

Story Bureau is a thrilling Dystopian Post-Apocalyptic adventure in the Surviving the Apocalypse series.

Baldwin struggles to survive life in a post-apocalyptic world where the government controls everything.

As society collapses and his family gets plunged into poverty, Baldwin takes a job in the capital city, working for a government agency called the Story Bureau. He discovers the Story Bureau is not a benign news outlet but a sinister government plot to manipulate society.

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Dark Family Secrets: Doris wants to get her life back, but small-town prejudice could shatter her dreams.

Casino Robbery Arthur Mitchell escapes the trauma of watching his girlfriend die. But the killers know he’s a witness and want him dead.

Planned Accidents  The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.

Letters from the Dead: The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.

What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead, and you could be next?

Sasquatch. Three things about us, you should know. One, we have seen the past. Two, we’re trapped there. Three, I don’t know if we’ll ever get back to our own time.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

For videos, see: Counselorssoapbox YouTube Video Channel

Is the fear of the unknown ruining your life?

What do you fear

Fear.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.

Under stress, humans may revert to primitive defense mechanisms.

These are undoubtedly stressful, uncertain times. Would it be wonderful if we knew what to do and how to get control of our lives back? Some of the things people do to cope with uncertainty can be helpful. Efforts to control the uncontrollable can hurt you and damage your relationships. Have you moved into any of these unhelpful ways of coping with uncertainty?

When under stress, some people freeze. They’re unable to act. Other people flee or run away from their problems. People who are full of fear become irritable and are more likely to get into both verbal and physical fights. As the fear levels have grown through the recent Covid-19 pandemic, fights both verbal and physical, have increased.

Have you gotten into fear? Is it damaging your life?

Here are some of the ways that fear may be taking over your life, damaging your relationships, and impairing your mental health.

Do you try to control everything people around you do?

Micromanaging, checking every possible thing people around you do, can give you a false sense of security. Trying to control the things your family does can result in damaging relationships. Micromanaging at work can interfere with getting the job done. The more effort you put into controlling other people, the more out of control your own life can become.

Taking over the tasks of others may keep you busy and distracted from your fears, but trying to reestablish a feeling of control by doing everything alienates others and put you at risk of burnout.

Constantly seeking reassurance interferes with taking action.

Continually seeking reassurance from those around you makes you seem needy and helpless. Do you repeatedly ask family and friends what you should do? Do you check and recheck articles online? Is your time on social media crowding out the rest of your life? All this effort to reassure yourself you’re making the right decision will interfere with your ability to ever decide. Don’t let your fears of uncertainty keep you paralyzed with indecision.

Have you become a chronic procrastinator?

Procrastination is a way of not making a choice. If you procrastinate long enough, you’ll never take action. When you’re faced with a decision, do you try to put that off as long as possible? Procrastinating uses up a lot of your time, and there may be penalties for failing to do what you should have done. Don’t let fear rob you of your ability to decide.

Do you recheck everything?

Rechecking some things may be necessary. But if you develop the pattern of chronically rechecking everything, your fears are destroying your self-confidence. If your need to recheck is out of control, you may be developing a mental health problem known as obsessive-compulsive disorder. OCD should not be confused with having the desire to have everything the way you want it. Once you’ve developed OCD, you find you can’t resist checking. If your fear has resulted in rituals, checking everything a particular number of times, it’s time to seek professional help.

Have you become a chronic worrier?

Worry has its place in our lives. Worry in its milder form concern is the habit of re-examining what we are doing to make sure we plan for significant risks. Useful worry is sometimes called “good enough worrying” you worry about high probability events and prepare for them.

Chronic worriers adopt the worry model of worry about every possible outcome. If you choose this model, there’s no end to the worrying. No matter how remote the possibility, you still need to worry about it. Have you stocked up on garlic in case of vampires? Chronic worrier’s take things to extreme lengths in the belief that if they worry about everything, they will prevent bad things from happening. Worrying doesn’t stop them from happening. Taking action and preparing for potential emergencies does help.

How have your fears been ruining your life?

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Seven David Joel Miller Books are available now!

My newest book is now available. It was my opportunity to try on a new genre. I’ve been working on this book for several years, but now seem like the right time to publish it.

Story Bureau.

Story Bureau is a thrilling Dystopian Post-Apocalyptic adventure in the Surviving the Apocalypse series.

Baldwin struggles to survive life in a post-apocalyptic world where the government controls everything.

As society collapses and his family gets plunged into poverty, Baldwin takes a job in the capital city, working for a government agency called the Story Bureau. He discovers the Story Bureau is not a benign news outlet but a sinister government plot to manipulate society.

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Dark Family Secrets: Doris wants to get her life back, but small-town prejudice could shatter her dreams.

Casino Robbery Arthur Mitchell escapes the trauma of watching his girlfriend die. But the killers know he’s a witness and want him dead.

Planned Accidents  The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.

Letters from the Dead: The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.

What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead, and you could be next?

Sasquatch. Three things about us, you should know. One, we have seen the past. Two, we’re trapped there. Three, I don’t know if we’ll ever get back to our own time.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller

Want the latest blog posts as they publish? Subscribe to this blog.

For videos, see: Counselorssoapbox YouTube Video Channel

Uncertain.

Sunday Inspiration.     Post by David Joel Miller.

Uncertain.

Uncertain.
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

Uncertain.

“The good we secure for ourselves is precarious and uncertain until it is secured for all of us and incorporated into our common life.”

― Jane Addams

“The future is no more uncertain than the present.”

― Walt Whitman

“Fear is always triggered by creativity, because creativity asks you to enter into realms of uncertain outcome. This is nothing to be ashamed of. It is, however, something to be dealt with.”

― Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear

Wanted to share some inspirational quotes with you.  Today seemed like a good time to do this. If any of these quotes strike a chord with you, please share them.

Look at these related posts for more on this topic and other feelings.

Emotions and Feelings.

Inspiration