Ripples #1119: Calm Within Chaos
Nov 2, 2020
Tomorrow can still be glorious even in the midst of uncertainty.
-Stephanie Chinnart, shared by Heather in Fort Atkinson, WI
Sticking with that uncertainty, getting the knack of relaxing in the midst of chaos, learning not to panic — this is the spiritual path.
-Pema Chödrön, shared by Holly in Phoenix, AZ
Most of us did not need a year as unsettling and unpredictable as 2020 to understand just how uncomfortable we are with uncertainty. The many unanticipated twists and turns have reinforced that we feel safer within our comfort zone. And it is true that we generally *are* safer in our comfort zone even though we tend to do our best learning and growing when we are move beyond our comfort zone.
Our minds are so uncomfortable with uncertainty that in many situations where we aren’t sure what is going to happen, we default to expecting (and dreading) the worst possible outcomes rather than just resting in the place of “Hmmm…I’m not sure how this is going to turn out.” Really sit with *this* for a moment: our mind can trick us into believing we’d rather just have the bad thing happen rather than remain in the uncertainty of not knowing the outcome.
Given the high stakes of the 2020 U.S. election, and given the high likelihood that we won’t immediately know the results, this week is likely to contain more than its share of uncertainty. We can’t control this uncertainty, and yet we can manage how we respond to it. I’m trepidatiously accepting this opportunity to wade into this liminal pond of unknowing. These waters are going to be uncomfortable, especially at first. If you’d like to join me, I’m guessing we’ll learn a thing or two, and maybe even find a way to have some fun. Are you in?
P.S. If you’re seeking a distraction on Tuesday night, I’m tentatively planning to unleash some “Election Night Non-Electiony Shenanigans” by sharing hopeful, helpful content in a series of brief Facebook Live webcasts. Just head over to Team Ripples and look for me there.