Why Clarity Matters More Than Certainty

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The COVID-19 pandemic helps me to see the distinction between Clarity and Certainty. 

It strips down the illusion of certainty we’ve been living in. Nowadays, most people aren’t sure if they will still have their job next month. If they are going to be healthy or sick, live or die tomorrow. The paradox becomes more apparent – the more we look for certainty, the more we realize how uncertain is the world we live in.

Why is it not uncertain? There is a reason why uncertainty exists, and the future is unknown. It provides a fertile ground for potentiality and possibilities. It has to exist when we are given the freedom to choose and create our own destiny. When everything is defined, we have no choice. When everything is fixed, there is no possibility. Would you rather live in a world like that for the sake of certainty?

If we can’t get the certainty we need to feel secure, how then we best navigate this time of crisis? 

Borrowing E.L Doctorow’s advice about writing, our journey through the pandemic is like driving at night in the fog. We can only see as far as our headlights, but we can make the whole trip that way

Clarity is our headlights; it is also built-in in us. We have a choice to use them when we need them. It is easy to take it for granted if the only thing that we fear and focus on is the weather outside. Sometimes we forget we are the driver and our car follows the direction to where we look.

Clarity arises when we focus on:

  • What is my purpose.
  • What matters the most.
  • What I can control.
  • What I can contribute.
  • What I am committing to.
  • Who I can serve.
  • What I am grateful for.
  • What available in the present moment.

The pandemic teaches us another way of living our lives. With clarity comes simplicity. Perhaps it isn’t much about arriving at a destination but learning to embrace uncertainty, choosing to always turn on our headlights and keep moving forward.

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