Fighting Fears: The Fear of the Unplanned

There are many fears that a person can have. There is one fear I call “the fear of the unplanned”. “Unplanned what?”, you may ask. Well, unplanned life. Unplanned life events. Unplanned anything and everything. Let me explain.

For example, I started university with a specific career plan in mind: I wanted to be a lawyer. Fast forward 3 years of studying just to realize the extend of the work, effort and financial investment required to become a lawyer. The future no longer looked so bright. Here it was: the fear of the unplanned.

Here is another example: I was really scared of financial instability. To the point that I did not want to move out and live by myself unless I had a permanent full-time job. Not just a job, it had to be a permanent position. So I was delaying this until it was about 2 months before my wedding. It was time to move. I just spoke with my director few weeks before that and was promised my contract to be extended, possibly promotion and to be moving to permanent staff. Things looked great. So even though technically I was not permanent yet, I faced my fear and signed papers to get a rental appartment for a year. The rent was all my income assuming my fiance kept earning his. Guess what happens when you trust the universe and try to follow the plan? Things do not go as planned. At all. Because as soon as I signed papers for a year, a week later I learned that my contract that was ending in a month will not be extended. Like, at all.

Life is what happens while you are making other plans. Life will never go as planned. Even when you do have a plan. Even if a plan is based on facts, interviews and promises. You can certainly live in fear of the unknown, unplanned and keep low and stay home and try not to be found, but even then there is no guarantee that the house where you are hiding will not get reposessed and you will be asked to leave. No one is safe from change. So instead of hiding and hoping the change will not come, step forward and face it! Sooner or later life will find you, and the more and harder you were hiding to avoid it, the greater the change will be. What you need to do is to be brave, be willing to work, to take risks and to live through it, because it is possible. You can and you will be able to live past this.

Back to my stories: when I was in third year, barely making it to B+ average, I learned that becoming a lawyer required me to be at least A student for the whole 4 years, it was also very costly (and of course I did not have that kind of money to attend the law school). However, I kept pushing and researching and realized that if I study smarter, there was a good profession, requiring only masters degree that was offered by my university, and only for a year (law school is 3 years). Guess what – I studied harder and got into this masters program. Where I met my now-husband, who also wanted to be a lawyer but did not get in into the lawschool so he went into my masters program to “kill time”. We both got jobs before we graduated and the rest is history.

To end the second story about the rental appartment: it was true that right after signing a contract to rent appartment for a year I learned that in a month I will not have a job at all. I remember how it was a dark rainy day, my fiance drove me to the area where Toronto supposed to have a beach. It was very gloomy and cold, after work, and we were walking in the not very safe area, seeing many street people and barely surviving pizza places. I was crushed, heartbroken and cried like there is no tomorrow. My now-husband helped me to see past that day, past that trouble. The next day I got to the office and started applying to jobs like crazy. And guess what, when you push back and show the universe what you’ve got, the situation improves. Because I did not just find any job, I found a better job, in a government, that paid 20k more per year, and I started there in a month, 2 days after my wedding. Things get better when you get better so keep pushing and fight past your fears!

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