Dealing with Unknowns

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I’ve been racking my brain deciding over which personal finance topic I am going to tackle this week. The past week has been one full of surprises and uncertainty and I’m not even talking about the US Presidential election result, although many would put that in the above categories. As an aside, before Brexit I would have been surprised but there were just too many similarities as things election process progressed. So this week’s post is something a little different, a post about dealing with the uncertainty that life throws at us.

I’ll leave the debate on the US Presidential for the mainstream media outlets (I expect it will be dominating for some time). Instead I’ll look at some current uncertainty in my life (consider this post therapy for me and hopefully someone else).

Job Uncertainty

What do you do when your threatened as the company undergoes its latest round of restructuring? Word in the office is that a number of locations are expected to close resulting in significant job losses. They say it’s not a case of if, but when. Having never faced such a threat in my years of post-university working life I find myself with mixed emotions:

  1. Happy as this could be an opportunity to try something new.
  2. Fearful due to a potential lack of stability, especially with other big changes happening in my life.
  3. Sad as it may mean some plans need to be put on hold.
  4. Glad that I discovered the world of Personal Finance blogs, resulting in upping my savings game.
  5. Eager to take my side-hustle game to the next level.
  6. Grateful that job loss wouldn’t leave hubby and I destitute for some time yet!

This appears to be in contrast to some of colleagues who are in full scale panic mode, despite no confirmation of what is going to happen. My mind says what’s the point in getting stressed?? I mean don’t get me wrong I understand that potential job loss can invoke worry when you have bills to pay, BUT will worrying change the outcome? Digging a little deeper I find that the most stressed colleague is concerned as all their savings have gone towards their wedding next year.

So why am I not stressed/worrying? Refer to feeling 4 and 6 above. It definitely helps reduce stressful feelings knowing that you have planned (in the form of an emergency fund) for times such as this. That and having done said panicking in the past I’ve learned that there is absolutely ZERO point in worrying about things you can’t control. 

I wasted many an hour/day/week worrying about whether I’d find another job after taking some time out to travel and what did it do for me? Absolutely nothing! If anything it sapped my energy and prevented me from making the most of this time. Add to this the aforementioned big life change and it really puts things into perspective – worrying does not help.

Instead, I’m focusing on what I can control, whether that be:

  1. Topping up the emergency fund.
  2. Continuing to maintain relationships with contacts and agents – great source for opportunities.
  3. Not making any rash decisions based on speculation/ but getting the facts.
  4. Preparing for possible outcomes, where I can’t establish the facts.
  5. Assessing how I could use this in pursuit of my life goals (e.g. if you were in a job you absolutely hated, the above scenario could be considered an opportunity to change).

I accept the fact that life can be a roller coaster with good points, bad points and everything in between. Although I can’t control those points I can control how I respond to them. In the mean time I’ll be keeping the negative thoughts and people at bay and taking positive action to keep moving forwards.

If you are experiencing something similar, keep your head up and keep it moving. The uncertainty will pass, so make the most of your journey.


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