3 Questions for Dealing with Uncertainty


As the pandemic takes us in new directions – mostly positive – I’ve noticed a growing sense of uncertainty in myself and in others.

Some of the questions I’ve heard, from myself and from others:

*Will I be able to pivot – again! – to meet new challenges with my work, family, education, society, and more?
*Will I have to give up the pandemic silver linings I discovered or developed?
*What things will stay the same?  What changes should I anticipate?
*Will things turn out better or worse?

Predictive questions like these can be helpful in assessing risk and noticing what we’re afraid of.

But predictive questions often leave us feeling less resourceful, overwhelmed, and they leave out one of our most powerful leverage points:

        The present moment.

Paradoxically, healthy planning for the future begins with an assessment of the present moment.

Here are three questions that are helping me to do that.  Grab your journal or open your computer notes, copy the questions down, and try out writing on all three questions for 5-30 minutes.  You may want to choose a particular part of your life where you’re meeting uncertainty right now – maybe business, a certain habit that might change soon, or something else entirely.  I’m curious how these three questions change your perspective and your relationship with the future, even when you only take a few minutes to write about your answers.

1) What’s wrong?

I know this isn’t the typical place we start in the world of personal and professional development!

And when I truthfully answer what I think is wrong or not working in this moment, I take a step towards a future that’s grounded in the now.

2) What’s right?

Take some time to write about what you like, appreciate, and want to continue.  

You could think about this question in relation to gratitude.  You could also brainstorm a list of everything – in this moment – that’s working or generating the results you want.

3) What do I want?

This question – grounded in the NLP Well Formed Outcome Frame – is meant to inspire possibility as well as focus.  

Give what’s right and what’s wrong, if anything were possible, what would I like to have happen?

I know these three questions are simple and may or may not be breathtakingly new.  And I’m also curious to find out what new insights or reflections come to you as you try out this attention experiment.

Here’s to your contentment, happiness, and success,