April 2, 2021

WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW WILL ALWAYS BE BIGGER THAN WHAT YOU DO KNOW...

By Oliver Armstrong
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A lot of people strive to stay within their comfort zone and they shape their lives so that they live within the boundaries of certainty.
A lot of this comes down to a person lacking self-trust.
What does self-trust have to do with certainty?

Think of it this way:
If you completely trust yourself, you are more likely to be willing to step into uncertainty where you will not know the outcome. And because you trust in yourself (and your abilities) you know that you will make the best decisions in the moment of truth.
However, someone lacking self-trust, is more likely to stay protected within an environment of certainty, where it’s safe and comfortable and where they never have to test themselves.
The paradox here, is that the more they stay within the boundaries of certainly the more they reinforce that they don’t trust themselves.
Then when they do encounter uncertainty, it often hits them hard in some way and doesn’t go well because they didn’t trust their self to cope or make good decisions in that uncertain time.


A few years ago I made a decision to start living as much in uncertainty as I could.

Why?

Because I wanted to grow mentally and emotionally and the certainty of my life (the mortgage, where I lived, driving the same roads, going to the same shops, eating the same foods, worrying about house maintenance, cars etc.) had all become normal and comfortable…

But I wasn’t living how I wanted to. I wanted more from life, but I knew I wasn’t mentally strong enough to make the changes I desired.
So I pushed myself to live just outside of my comfort zone everyday. And beyond changing my life in many ways I didn’t expect, I also became more “mentally tough”.

I began to notice the changes when I was able to remain calm and in control in situations which used to always cause me to get very stressed, panicky, or angry.

Fast forward a few years and I now live and work on the road in a caravan with my Wife and two children; uncertain of where we will stay beyond the days or weeks we have booked in at a camping spot, uncertain of where I will find internet or phone signal, uncertain of how challenging it’s going to be to park the caravan, uncertain of what to do or where to go with the kids when it rains…

But here’s the thing…

It doesn’t bother me, (or my wife) because we trust ourselves enough to solve and figure it out. (Whatever the ‘it’ is).
I REALLY enjoy uncertainty now (so does my wife) and we both feel a lot more alive living in uncertainty than we ever did within our boundaries of certainty.


My advice to you if you live in certainty and you want to make big changes in your life…

Start small.

Like taking a cold shower every day, driving different roads, taking a different bus route, trying different food, singing in public, talking to a stranger - basically anything that puts you just outside of your comfort zone, into uncertainty.

When you are comfortable with being uncomfortable (or certain about being uncertain), then resolve any big psychological problems from your past which limit you.

THEN build trust in yourself, so that you too can be certain that you will be fine in uncertain times.

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