Sitting Space: Facing the Discomfort of Uncertainty

Sitting Space Banner
The Sitting Space is a feature I’m starting to share what I’m learning from the things that I’m “sitting with” in my life.

So often we run–to alcohol, food, sex–from the feelings of our lives. I have decided to sit with mine.  This feature is an expression of self-generosity that provides a space for me to be present.

Feeling Lost

It was over. No denying that. The door was shut.

All the dreams. All the hopes. All the plans.

All of it, irrelevant now.

I needed to find myself again. I needed to reconnect to Source. I needed to feel what it felt like to be me.

Uncertainty terrifies, but can also serve as a powerful teacher.

Uncertainty as Teacher

When my relationship ended, I stumbled, adrift.

Who am I, really?

I felt as if I had lost myself in the other.  And so, I decided that I would spend a portion of each day sitting.

Sometimes I read. Sometimes I meditated or whispered a prayer. Sometimes I just sat and felt the warmth of the sun on my face as it set over the horizon.

I did whatever felt good. No agenda. No expectation. No preconceived notions.

Just me with myself. Being me.  Decadent, luxurious and sacred–a holy hour.

Uncertainty as Friend

The quality of your life depends on the amount
of uncertainty you can live comfortably with.
 -Tony Robbins


Today, I am sitting with anxiety. Months after relocating to a new city, work is intermittent.

After years of searching, I have found something I love to do. Something that lights me up. Something that feeds my soul. But it doesn’t yet fully support me.

So I wonder and I doubt.

Will I make it?

Am I going to always feel like I’ve missed the mark?

What is next?

What I Know

Courage is presence in the face of uncertainty. Facing fear with composure. I don’t have the answers.

do know that I am loved.

I do know that I am supported.

do know that I live in a benevolent world.

And so I trust my highest wisdom. I lean on my unwavering faith in goodness. I leap into uncertainty’s open arms–again and again.

The Most Important Thing…

This moment–this Sitting Space–is transitory. Like everything in life, uncertainty fades. It is an early morning mist hovering across the surface of still waters, and it evaporates at the first ray of sunlight.

Today I sit with uncertainty, and I know that in a moment I shall stand up under the full light of the noonday sun.

So what is fear but an unreal expectation? Fear means believing that things never change. It means believing that life is not kind. It means believing that I am not enough.

Fear is a ridiculous thing.

I can sit with uncertainty and refuse fear a place at my table. So can you.

What Are You Sitting With Today?

What are you sitting with in your Sitting Space?  What are you willing to sit with? What are you no longer willing to sit with?

I invite you to share your wisdom in the comments below.  If you would like more insight in facing uncertainty, I invite you to download my free eBookNo Doubt, which has a whole section on facing uncertainty.

About Steve

Hi, I'm Steve Rice and my goal is to transform simple philosophical truths into practical fuel to revolutionize your life. It's not about self-help, it's about self-reliance. I show you how. Connect with me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter and let me know how I can help you.

  • Steve, Oh there’s a whole big “who knows??” transition sitting before me, but like you, I plan to look forward to it and investigate and just see what shows up. Just being is enough. We work on not being scared and remembering the universe has our back, but sometimes when it’s a huge uncertainty we have to keep reminding ourselves 🙂

    • You’re absolutely right, @JulieAClearSign:disqus . It’s interesting you mention investigation. I’ve been reading (and watching) a lot of Byron Katie this past week. I definitely realize that my best teachers have come forward in impeccable timing to allow me to question the thoughts i have about certainty, uncertainty, career, finances, etc.

      I trust the process because I’ve been through it before, but I also am learning to challenge the beliefs that I’m doing it “wrong” (or right). It’s ultimately a great place to be…in this “sitting space”

  • Ah, Steve.
    I haven’t been over here in a long long while, I am sorry. Uncertainty can make you pause when you should move ~ fast. I loved what you said in the face of the insidious snake (fear) ~ “Fear is a ridiculous thing.” It is! (Not always, I know, I know….but mostly!) I love the whole concept of the “Sitting Space” too… I am going to think about that one. It seems I never have that space any more and I feel more and more often I HAVE to find it. Hang in there, my friend.

    • Hi there @girlygrizzly:disqus! Thanks for swinging back in! 🙂 I’m working to be more consistent and reliable with putting out content…hence the different “features” I’m creating…such as the Sitting Space.

      I have been reading Byron Katie lately, so doing alot of work. Life is good. It’s all about awakening, isn’t it?

      So glad you’ve reconnected here. Thanks again for stopping in.

  • Ahhh I SO needed to read this today! Especially the “uncertainty as friend” section. “But it doesn’t yet fully support me” — that financial bit is one that comes up again and again for me. Thanks for writing this. I’m going to be sitting with a whole lot this weekend! Can’t wait! 🙂

    • Hang in there. The chief lesson I’ve learned when I’m sitting with something like uncertainty is not to fight it. It is what it is. I am gentle with myself and don’t try to change my feelings about it. That creates more suffering and stress for me.

      Circumstances and life shift…that’s what they do. Byron Katie says “Life lives us, if we are at peace with it.”

      My big challenge is trusting it. 🙂

  • Lori Gosselin

    Is sitting with it like bringing it to meditation Steve, because I love to do that. I do confess, though, to not being very good at sitting with uncertainty. I write down questions sometimes, at other times I escape until I feel up to it.

    Right now I’m excited about bringing my business to the next level. I’m not sure how I will get there but I know what the destination looks like so I’ll get there. Now to enjoy the process, the journey. 🙂

    • Yes, @lorigosselin:disqus, I think it is my way of saying that. If not formal meditation (because I couldn’t even meditate the other day, I was so blocked), it’s just engaging non-resistance. It’s kind of setting it to the side…as you indicated, until I’m up to it.

      In other words, uncertainty is my reality right now, so I’m not going to fight it. I’m not going to distract or medicate it or avoid it. I’m just going to “sit” with it and let it be what it will be.

      This is what I know. Life and circumstances change…life flows. So no matter whether i live at harmony with the uncertainty or not, eventually it will change and new (and better) circumstances will enter my awareness.

      You’re right, though. Uncertainty is not my strong suit, either. 🙂

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