Honestly, this is a tricky topic. Because no single person on planet Earth has the answer. I’m not a time traveler. We are not born to travel into time. With this limited range, we are stuck in the present. And at certain times, we find ourselves getting anxious about the future or regrets about the past.
And all these originates from a place. A place of fear.
So we are starting with the first ‘F word’ on the title.
WHAT ARE YOUR FEARS?
– I hope I won’t lose my job during this period?
– I have just lost my job. How will I survive?
– I have not gotten something to do at all. Where will I start from?
– My business is not making profits. I hope I am not wasting my time?
– Another rejection mail. Will this thing ever work out?
– I’m learning a skill no one is paying for. Why am I doing it in the first place?
– Everybody is already doing what I plan to do. I’m scared already.
– I am single and already getting old. Will I ever meet the love of my life?
– I’ve started creating content and only two people commented in a month Why is life not balanced at all?
Feel to add your current fears too if it’s not on the list.
But one thing is already evident. As long as we live in this uncertain unpredictable world, there will always be something to be afraid of. There is always something to feel anxious about. But this should never be your case. Because there’s a way around this.
It’s necessary to define fear first. The simplest definition of FEAR is False Evidence Appearing Real. This inevitably means one thing. It’s all in your mind.
The falsehood. The worry. The anxiety. It’s all in your head and your reactions towards your thoughts.
I understand this emotion can be caused by both actual and perceived threats. But still, fear is an emotion. And emotions can be managed, controlled and even replaced.
This leads us to the second part:
WHERE DO YOUR FANTASIES LIE?
All actions start from a single thought. You move because your mind tells you to move. Words come out from your mouth because your brain translates your thought patterns into actual words. And you make and unmake plans after mapping out the steps in your head.
This means all thoughts originate from the image making power of your mind. Your imagination. Hence, your actions so far have been done in your fantasies before.
Personally, I believe this to be true. Thinking lowly of yourself leads to external low self-esteem. Thoughts of you failing leads to the actual failure itself.
Your beliefs become your thoughts,Ghandi
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny
And this brings us to the most powerful F word of them all. Faith.
WHO IS YOUR FAITH ON?
There’s a short story that protrays the importance of faith over fear:
An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy. “It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.”
He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.”
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”
The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
This fable shows that it’s important to keep replacing our thoughts of fear with that of faith.
Living a fear-based lifestyle simply leads to constant worry, anxiety and eventual despair. But having a faith based life leads to contentment, freedom and peace of mind while achieving your goals. This eventually leads to striving to be the best version of yourself on a daily basis.
The fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It’s our handle on what we can’t see.Hebrews 11:1-2 MSG
After learning the fundamentals behind your fear, fantasies and faith; what are the steps to take in order to have a positive future?
1. BELIEVE IN GOD
Having total trust and confidence on the ways, thoughts and opinions of God is definitely the first step on the path of having a certain future in an uncertain world.
The reason is because the universe was created and designed in tandem with His Will for you and I. So, who better to collaborate when making your plans than the Master Planner Himself.
Believe in God by developing a personal relationship with Him through prayer, reading his Word and communicating with people who truly worship Him.
Practice this belief by showering love to yourself and everyone you come in contact with.
2. MAKE PLANS FOR TOMORROW BUT DO THEM TODAY
Alice Morse Earle once said, “Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That’s why it is called the present.” ( I first heard this quote from Master Oogway in Kung Fu Panda)
You are young at heart and in body with boundless mental and physical energy but you only have the power to change today.
You can achieve this step by setting long term goals with daily steps and monthly milestones. For instance, a goal of reading twelve books a year means you must finish book every month and reviewing your new found knowledge on a quarterly basis.
3. VISUALISE YOUR HIGHEST SELF
Visualisation is a powerful way of mentally breaking yourself from the uncertainties of today’s world.
Build strong mental images of how you want to be in the future. Stephen Covey put this as, “Begin with the end in mind.”
So, imagine yourself in a big beautiful mansion with lovely kinds and the perfect partner. Imagine your books being sold and read by millions of readers worldwide. Visualise yourself being the head of a successful and thriving Fortune 500 company. Make these visualisations as personalised and clear as possible. The clearer and more vivid these images are in your head. The better.
After this mental exercise, show up with that aura and energy every day.
And this brings us to the last step on building a certain future in an uncertain world:
3. READ GOD’S WORD REGULARLY
Try to study God’s Word every day ( I use the word, “try” because I still struggle to maintain a daily streak) This is extremely important because it is easy to get swayed and fearful with the news headlines from both traditional and social media platforms.
Yet, God’s Word has already foretold these perilous times, and studying it every day is a gentle reminder that you are loved and meant to last forever. There are also timeless principles and success stories of men who excelled in their own era. And you won’t be an exception.
Yeah. That’s it. Based, here is a quick checklist of what you need to do to have a positive future:
- Learn to replace your fears with faith.
- Establish the right fantasies.
- Place your faith on God by believing in Him.
- Believe in God by praying and studying his Word.
- Make plans for tomorrow but execute them today.
- Visualise your highest self and start showing up as him.
- Try to study God’s Word every day.
Writing this has made me realise I have had misplaced faith on several occasions and that’s why there are still fears hovering in my head. I learned a lot from this and I hope you feel the same after reading it too.
Cheers to a certain future and an unshakeable faith.
(This post is dedicated to Otache Ochefio for the writing prompt. Thank you Fred for the extra push.)