The Gift of Uncertainty: Making Friends with Maybe
Personal Empowerment / 327 Views
Written by Allison Carmen. Narrated by Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf.com.
“Uncertainty is the refuge of hope.” —Henri Frederic Amiel
When I think back to the beginning of my separation from my husband, I can’t decide which was harder: his actually leaving me or being in counseling together for seven weeks. Sitting in counseling with someone whom I’d had to beg to stay was overwhelmingly painful. There was something so awful about someone who had been my best friend the month before who was now so cold and distant, who was only sitting through therapy, it seemed, as a concession to me.
In therapy, we “explored” why he wanted to leave. But the reason was simple. He wanted to date other people. I watched him struggle to come up with a better explanation, but this, in the end, was what it came down to. What were the chances counseling could shift that? In counseling, one of the hardest parts was living with the uncertainty of whether the marriage could be saved.
One night, as I lay in bed crying while my husband slept next to me, I noticed my book The Gift of Maybe on my nightstand. I picked it up and went into the bathroom, where I sat on the cold tile floor. I opened up the book and started to read. I had begun writing the book in 2011, and it was now seven years later.
As I read through the first chapter, which explored the kinds of fears I'd been living with for years, to my surprise, I found that I had listed "Would my husband always love me?" as one of my fears. The words hit me hard. It was as if I had been writing to my future self, reminding her to embrace this mindset of maybe when the time came, and I'd really need it.
The Need for Certainty
The premise of The Gift of Maybeis that being addicted to certainty creates fear and limits what is possible in our lives. It was born from my experience that if I didn't know what would happen next in my life, I projected things would be bad and not work out. I was unable to sit in the uncertainty of life and be open to all the possible outcomes, especially the good ones...
Allison Carmen holds a B.A. in accounting, a J.D. of Law, and a Master's of Law in taxation. After working for a large law firm in Manhattan, she founded her own law firm and built a successful practice focusing on real estate, corporate, mergers and acquisitions, and taxation. After 15 years of practicing law, Allison transitioned her practice into business consulting, business coaching, and life coaching. Allison is also the part-time CFO of The Motherhood Center, a mission-driven female-run day hospital for women with perinatal mood and anxiety disorders.
Allison is the author of The Gift of Maybe: Offering Hope and Possibility in Uncertain Times, and A Year Without Men, A Twelve Point Guide to Inspire and Empower Women. Allison's podcast, 10 Minutes To Less Suffering, focuses on helping people alleviate daily stress and worry. She also writes for several large online publications, including Psychology Today, and is sought after guest on radio and other online media platforms. She is also a certified health coach and Reiki master.