“We are always in transition. If you can just relax with that, you’ll have no problem.”
I’ve been training in uncertainty for a few years now.
I realized that the people I coach and teach are just like me: we feel shaky, scared, anxious, uncomfortable when we are faced with massive uncertainty, when the ground is pulled out from under our feet.
This shakiness is the cause of our procrastination, hiding from overwhelming projects, running from discomfort, and putting off exercise, healthy eating, meditation, writing, reading and all the other things we want in our lives.
And so, if we can train in uncertainty, we can get good at life. We no longer need to fear groundlessness.
What does it mean to train in uncertainty?
It means to constantly yank the rug out from under your feet.
When you get comfortable with something, you have to give it up. When you think you know something, you have to toss it out. When you walk through life with concepts, you have to let those concepts go and see things with fresh eyes.
Most of us walk around thinking we know things — think about how often we think we know how everyone else should act. Training in uncertainty is letting go of the certainty that we know how everyone else should behave, and having no concepts.
Most of us walk around thinking we know what things around us are. We barely glance at the things we pass. Training in uncertainty is tossing all that out, and seeing things for the first time, full of curiosity.
Training in uncertainty is pushing into discomfort when you want to run to comfort. It’s going to an event that scares the crap out of you. It’s setting aside time to write every day even when you want to run like crazy from the writing.
And then when you think you know something about training in uncertainty … you throw that out too. You keep throwing everything away, and know nothing.
What you’re left with is just impermanence — constant flux. Groundlessness. A deeply interconnected world, without separation.
THE BEAUTY OF UNCERTAINTY / LEARN HOW TO USE UNCERTAINTY TO FIND LASTING LOVE
We’ve figured out how to control most things in our lives — our bodies, our weight, our work. But relationships? That’s something different altogether. We can’t control someone else’s heart, and because of that, there’s always a certain amount of uncertainty in any relationship.
And, sadly, it is this uncertainty that causes many of us to put up walls and push others away. Rather than face living with uncertainty in relationships, many people shut down completely. Because at its core, our need for certainty is a survival mechanism, and in uncertain states, we do what is necessary to protect ourselves — or our hearts in this case. But the beauty of the uncertainty in relationships is that it is in this space that our ultimate spiritual growth evolves, and where we can find more joy and more happiness than anywhere.
So just how do we overcome the innate urge to self-protect during periods of uncertainty? How do we learn how to surrender control to trust and faith? What’s the best way for dealing with uncertainty in relationships?
Through understanding, practicing and mastering the skills that are critical to your success in finding, nurturing and creating an outstanding relationship. There is a lot to learn and appreciate about the needs, feelings and behaviors of yourself as well as your partner — and, most importantly, how to use these understandings to best support your partner and your relationship.
SHARE YOUR FEARS
How do you protect yourself from feeling pain? Do you give your partner the cold shoulder? Do you hold back love?
Becoming aware of your behavioral patterns makes it easier to recognize them when they arise, and helps you achieve more objective viewpoint when emotions take hold. Recognizing your triggers and patterns is just the first step — next, you must share this information with your partner.
Open up to your partner about what you need in order to release your inner withholding and connect. Let your partner play a supportive role in helping you work through your fears and finding a new approach to any destructive patterns. You may be surprised just how much more trust this can create. Communicating openly, and not just talking but really communicating with your partner, can erode much of the uncertainty in relationships.
GIVE WITHOUT GETTING
Learn to give without the promise of getting. As Tony Robbins says, “The secret to living is giving.” Learn to receive your greatest joy from seeing your partner fulfilled. Find out what drives your partner, what they are hungry for, what their goals are. Find out what their pains are. Don’t be in a relationship just asking what you can get from your partner. Open up and give this person your love and honesty.
For example, try looking your partner in the eyes and asking them to explain what makes them feel loved. Honor and accept their answer as the truth and not try to change their needs to match yours.
Learn to choose trust and faith in your relationship, even when it doesn’t seem possible – stay, even when everything in you wants to run. No matter what, believe that your partner has only positive intent.
For example, when you feel yourself reacting to your partner as if they are doing something “to you,” observe your reaction and trust their intention. Rather than reacting, open up and see what they need at that moment to feel loved.
Lastly, treat your partner as you yourself would like to be treated. Be the example of what you want in a partner. Step back and feel what your partner is feeling and be present for his or her pain. At the same time, recognize their unique needs.
For example, instead of demanding from your partner, decide to go first in giving what he or she needs. Discover what you need to do for them to feel vulnerable and loved in your relationship. And when your partner is in distress, commit to listening with absolute compassion, with the sole goal of helping alleviate their suffering.
Remember, the only thing we can control is ourselves: our actions, our reactions, the choices that we make in our relationships every day. Embrace the power you do have to shape the dynamic of your relationship, and you will get one step closer to creating true peace in your relationship