Maintain a flexible mindset in an uncertain world

A First Steps NZ Resource by Umbrella Thinking

The human mind is unique, and can do things that no other animal can do. It can construct futures and reconstruct the past. This ability to construct expectations of the future, along with the drive to enact them, has been the secret of our success as a species.

It is also the cause of much of our distress. We can react to these imagined futures, or the loss of them, as if they are happening for real right now. This might be a sense of disappointment that a move to Level 3 is unlikely to see me being able to visit family, and grieve for the loss of that future, or fixating on the worst-case scenario for our business.

In a world that is increasingly uncertain and volatile, and is driven by factors outside our control, we can find ourselves stuck on a roller coaster of emotions as we react to each of the futures our mind constructs. For some of us, this might begin to lead to a sense of overwhelm, exhaustion, grief and despair.

Man with glasses outdoors in the evening with a positive expression on his face

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