Courage comes from embracing uncertainty. None of us can control every aspect of our existence, and yet each day we continue to try and achieve this sense of ultimate control. It is impossible to control everything, and so if we cannot embrace uncertainty, we are bound to feel anxious or depressed at certain points in our lives.
Counselling offers the opportunity to explore this uncertainty in a safe and confidential setting. Your counsellor should listen without judging you, and with an open heart and mind, making every attempt to try and understand how you are experiencing the world. He or she will work with you to try and achieve the change that you would like. And if things cannot be changed, you can work together to try and accept this.
Once we loosen the reins a little, once we embrace uncertainty, we can learn to live more freely. One example might be to look at your 'safety behaviour'. In what ways do you keep yourself safe? It might be that you are keeping yourself safe from disappointment, or hurt, or some other perceived danger. At what cost are you keeping yourself 'safe'? Weigh up the cost of that safety behaviour compared with the benefit it affords you. Is it worth the cost? If not, is there some way you could take a risk and see what happens?
Another way to embrace uncertainty is to challenge the assumptions you make about yourself and the world you live in. You might, for example, have unrealistic assumptions that you, and others, can never make a mistake. Why not? And what is the worst that could happen?
Have a go, start small, and see how it goes.
Chris Warren-Dickins BACP Registered Counsellor
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