One of the most difficult times in the lives of many leaders is the time of uncertainty. This period is always associated with a high level of either of the following: financial dryness, emotional coldness, lack of great ideas, blankness, lack of creative energy, lethargy, depression etc. During this period, it is common to find many young leaders questioning their chosen paths because of the many irregularities and hardships they face. And the quitting tendency is also high during these periods.
Leaders who lack the stability to endure hardships on their journey are forced by life to quit. Many organizational leaders I have talked to confirmed that they have gone through these stages on their path to growth. They also testified that those periods were important in making them who they are.
While these times of uncertainty leaves a leader out and dry, they are very important for him on his path to growth. This period of uncertainty is what gives him the patience to absolve the pains of life and the staying power needed to grow and become the best version of himself. The lessons learned during these periods, if utilized effectively, will become the building blocks of his journey through finding purpose and actualizing his gifts.
Below are four ways a leader can effectively break through the walls of uncertainty.
1. Embrace your uncertainty.
This is the most important and effective way of breaking through the walls of uncertainty. While this is the most difficult thing to do, it is very significant on your life’s journey. You must do all you can to walk through your period of challenges with utmost grace, serenity and calmness of the soul. Life is not all rosy and sweet; it has its fair share of troubles. And you must understand that many others are also on their own journey. Your troubles, pains, depressions and rejections on your way to success are supposed to motivate you to do more and achieve more; they will also make great stories that will give impetus to your success when you finally arrive.
You can cry all you want, but after crying, clean your eyes and begin again. Don’t shy away from your challenges; embrace them, wear them as a badge of honor. You are your story and your story is you.
We will always increase our chances of success if we have the wisdom and humility to embrace our own ignorance, celebrate ambiguity on our paths and befriend uncertainty.
2. Trust in your abilities
One of the hardest things during the periods of uncertainty is that it robs us of our self confidence and sense of worthiness. Because our plans and leadership styles aren’t working in our favor, we are prone to lose confidence in ourselves and abilities. This is where depression and suicidal thoughts are at their peak. Young leaders who lack mastery over their emotions have been known to fall into a high level of depression at this stage because their sense of identity, worthiness and confidence has been stolen. They also have lost their reference point to their realities.
To gain your ground, you have to trust in your abilities and judgments. You must understand that these times shall pass and you are in good hands with yourself. Nothing is more astounding at this period than in believing yourself. Speak to yourself and live in the consciousness that life will eventually give beautiful winds to your sail, all you need is time.
3. Take small positive steps
Taking small steps is important at this stage. You must find our energy and keep doing your works. Life’s vagueness has a way of putting us down and killing our desires to work. You must avoid this at all cost. Keep taking small steps even when you feel you cannot. When you do this, you will bring in small surges of energy that will propel you to do even bigger things.
4. Build a network
Get out of you way and network with friends who share the same worldview as you. Talk about your challenges to trusted friends. Make an ego-free admission that things are not good at the moment. You will find that talking about what you are passing though will reveal, with increasing accuracy, that you are not alone. Misery loves company. Find company with people who are also passing through your journey and form a support group. Doing this will push you out of any depressive state you have been into.
One more thing…
5. Take a trip, if you can afford it.
This is very important. Travelling out of your zone has proven to be always effective. Get out of your zone and see life from new perspectives. During your trip, don’t force yourself to work or do anything that will force creativity. You will find that your emotions and intelligence will surge and make you buoyant. This will also make you feel good about yourself.
Life is always happening to every one of us. Tough times don’t always last; but tough people do.