I Have No F*cking Idea! (The Freedom of Not Knowing)
“Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what’s going to happen next.”
― Gilda Radner
We have seen many dramatic events this year. 2020 has been a historic turning point. So, after all we have witnessed, what could possibly happen next?
The answer: I have no idea. We are living in a time of profound uncertainty. It is human to deeply fear uncertainty more than anything else. We have an election and holidays coming and then 2020 will come to an end, and all I know is that I don’t know what to expect. While this not knowing may have made me crazy a few months back, I am surprisingly OK with it today.
Here are a few benefits of not knowing:
- We’re off the hook.
We simply can’t know what is coming, so there is no reason to stress out or trip out about the future. What is coming next will arrive no matter how we react.
- We can make better use of our time.
Since we can’t know what is next, why obsess over it? You can spend time doing things you enjoy. It’s spinning your wheels to predict the unpredictable! That is all the news is doing most of the time–speculating about the unknown! Stay informed, but use the time you have on something that serves you and makes you happy.
- We will learn more about what it takes to adapt.
We learn and grow from adversity. We can become stronger, improve the quality of our lives, relationships, and increase our self-esteem. Often, we don’t recognize how valuable an experience is until we are beyond it.
- For many things, they are not ours to choose.
Let’s face it, we are on a wild ride and not knowing is the current state of things. When we want to know things that we can’t know, all we create is frustration for ourselves. This ride requires courage that does not mean having the answers, that’s simply not possible. However, when we relinquish the illusion of control, we can spend more of our energy on how we respond and what we learn.
What will happen to the world? What will happen to us? These questions, at the moment, are unanswerable. It is perhaps more important than ever for us to live bravely, by learning what we can, being humble, and not knowing. Being OK with that can bring a new sense of ease.
“You do not need to know precisely what is happening, or exactly where it is all going. What you need is to recognize the possibilities and challenges offered by the present moment, and to embrace them with courage, faith and hope.”
― Thomas Merton