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5 Ways to Handle Uncertainty

Five keys to dealing with uncertainty

Five keys to dealing with uncertainty
  1. Recognize that there is only so much you can do right now, and that makes you human, not powerless.
  2. Envision the best, while being realistic. People tend to overestimate the risks and negative consequences and that leads to a lot of anxiety.
  3. You've faced uncertainty before. Take time to think and reflect on what helped you before.
  4. Although dealing with uncertainty is hard, there are consequences for not facing it head-on.
  5. See the Possibility.

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5 Ways to Handle Uncertainty

5 Ways to Handle Uncertainty

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/5-ways-to-handle-uncertai_b_13326476

huffpost.com

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Key Ideas

Change brings uncertainty

When it comes to change, we may not always be able to control the outcome, but we can control our response to it. And that's resilience. It gives you the tools to bounce back from tough situations and thrive in the face of challenges.

Five keys to dealing with uncertainty

  1. Recognize that there is only so much you can do right now, and that makes you human, not powerless.
  2. Envision the best, while being realistic. People tend to overestimate the risks and negative consequences and that leads to a lot of anxiety.
  3. You've faced uncertainty before. Take time to think and reflect on what helped you before.
  4. Although dealing with uncertainty is hard, there are consequences for not facing it head-on.
  5. See the Possibility.

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Emotional intelligence when facing uncertainty
Emotional intelligence when facing uncertainty
As we face uncertainty, our brains push us to overreact in a place where emotions, such as anxiety and fear, are generated. And these inhibit good decisio...
Strategies to improve the quality of your decisions
  • Be wary of fear and spot it as soon as it begins to surface.
  • Stay positive. 
  • Know what you know—and what you don’t.
  • Embrace that which you can’t control. 
  • Focus only on what matters. 
  • Don’t seek perfection - it leaves you lamenting what you failed to accomplish instead of enjoying what you were able to achieve.
  • Don’t dwell on problems. Rather focus on actions to better yourself.
  • Recognize when you are overly influenced by your assumptions and emotions or by another person’s opinion.
  • Have a contingency plan without asking "What if?"
Manage uncertainty and its related risk
Manage uncertainty and its related risk
  • Control the “controllable.” Certainty is vital in business, but also elusive.
  • How people cope starts with their attitude. Where there is change, there is opportunity.&nbs...
Unhealthy Ways to Deal with Uncertainty
  • Throw up your hands and give up. Then risking it all on the next big move for the company. Learn to fail faster - take lots of smaller risks instead of one big one and get feedback quickly.
  • Not wanting to make a decision at all because of fear of failure. Learning from failure is a valuable part of your education. If you make a couple of mistakes but outweigh those blunders with successes, you are okay.
Changing How We Evaluate Success with Decisions

... is critical in uncertaintyWe too often judge people by the outcomes of the decisions instead of on the process that was used to reach them.

However, isn’t it better if people had an unfortunate result and a great process than someone who had a successful outcome but flipped a coin to get there?

Anxiety is rewarding

Each time we worry and nothing bad happens, our mind connects worry with preventing harm:

Worry → nothing bad happens.

And the takeaway is, "It's a good thing I worried."&nbs...

Beliefs about worry
  • If I worry, I'll never have a bad surprise.
  • It's safer if I worry. We believe that the act of worrying itself somehow lowers the likelihood of a dreaded outcome. 
  • I show I care by worrying. We need to distinguish between caring about a situation and worrying needlessly and fruitlessly about it. 
  • Worrying motivates me. We need to differentiate between unproductive worry and productive concern and problem solving.
  • Worrying helps me solve problems. Extreme worry is more likely to interfere with problem-solving. 
Tools to assist us with worry
  • Calm the nervous system with guided muscle relaxation, meditation, and exercise. 
  • Notice when you're worrying and any beliefs that reinforce worry.  Awareness of the process gives us more choice in how we respond.
  • Embrace uncertainty. Most of the things we care about in life involve uncertainty. It takes considerable practice to begin to embrace it.
  • Live in the present. Practice focusing your attention on the present in everyday activities like taking a shower, walking, or talking with a friend, as well as in more formal practices like meditation or yoga.
  • When we face our fears head-on, they tend to diminish. Deliberately accept what you're afraid of: "It's possible I'll miss my flight." 
Today's uncertainties

The technology and the Internet are making the world evolve at a dizzying rate. The time to live quietly, without changes and having everything under control at all times, is over.

You...

Tips for dealing with uncertainty
  • Clarify your goals and objectives, what is really important to you and what is optional. 
  • Create a map.  You need a system that allows you to maneuver when you lose perspective.
  • Go towards uncertainty. Take the first step and you’ll see that the limits of the unknown become narrower.
  • Focus on what you can control in the short term. Do not obsess over what might happen in the future or you will be foolishly paralyzed.
  • Be open to surprises. It will allow you to learn and experience things that you have not even dreamed of.
  • Accept the risks
  • Be curious. Observe, read, question, learn, do not take anything for granted.
  • Be brave. The secret of getting ahead is getting started.
Release the critic

Not only is anxiety painful enough, but we often get hit with a second round of self-critical thoughts.

If your judgments make you more anxious, see if you can interrupt your self-critic by d...

Practice tuning into the senses

In moments of moderate to intense anxiety, the 3×3 practice can come in handy.

Drop into 3 of your senses and name 3 things that you notice about them: the things you’re seeing, smelling, tasting, feeling, or hearing. This can help interrupt the automatic catastrophic thinking that’s fuelling the anxiety.

Channel your anxious energy

If your anxiety isn’t severe, you can actually channel that energy into something productive.

For example, if you’re nervously waiting to hear some news, get active—go for a walk, clean, organize, or garden instead.

How to embrace an uncertain future
How to embrace an uncertain future
  • Replace expectations with plans. You can guide your tomorrow, but you can’t control the exact outcome.
  • Prepare for different possibilities.
  • Become a feeling ob...
Manage uncertainty
Manage uncertainty
  • Focus on the things you can control (and ignore those that you can’t)
  • Shift from External to Internal Locus of Control. It means you perceive yourself to have more ...
Coping in uncertainty
Coping in uncertainty

Whether you are a manager, teacher, or physician, you are a leader in your organization or community. In times of distress, it can be difficult to know how to help others best and motivate them to ...

Coaching with compassion

In the face of uncertainty, it is natural to hold on to the status quo and stick to as-normal-as-possible routines and tasks. This can work when the context is predictable, and the goal is clearly defined.

However, during periods of volatility and stress, a taskmaster mode could be a mistake. The individual can feel pressured or obligated, which will make them negative. It is more important to prioritize your team's needs and create an environment of trust and support. It will unleash positive emotions, and the person is likely to feel more confident, hopeful, and willing to consider new ideas.

How to coach with compassion

We can follow six steps to help others, using the acronym “REACH”:

  • Resonance. Check in with each person without discussing a list of tasks. The goal is to create a supportive and positive relationship.
  • Empathy. Shift your concern from wanting to be understood to understanding others.
  • Awareness. Be aware of your mindset and emotions. Emotions are contagious.
  • Compassion. Try to focus on the needs of others and encourage caring and warmth to help another person in their development.
  • Hope. Spreading positive emotions will uplift others when you help them to picture a brighter and better future.
  • Humor. Stress shuts us down to new ideas and experiences. By keeping things light, you remind others to keep smiling. In turn, it will reduce stress and increase satisfaction, productivity, and performance.
Data and how it frames your thinking
Data and how it frames your thinking

What’s more important than how much data you have is how it frames the way you think.

Some leader when they're under pressure to appear decisive, approach complex situa...

Thomas Bayes'd thought experiment

He wondered how he could predict the probability of a future event if he only knew how many times it had occurred, or not, in the past. Bayes figured out that even when it comes to uncertain outcomes, we can update our knowledge by incorporating new, relevant information as it becomes available.

His theorem describes the probability of an event, based on prior knowledge of conditions that might be related to the event.

Importance of using probabilistic thinking

Data can be imperfect, incomplete, or uncertain. Most of the time, there is more than one explanation for why things happened the way they did; by examining those alternative explanations using probability, you can gain a better understanding of causality and what is really going on.

one more idea

Fuel growth while managing uncertainty
Fuel growth while managing uncertainty
  • Prepare for multiple outcomes that are within your control.
  • Refine your business plan. Adjust your strategies to your business’s current situation so you can u...