The Future is Scary

Sometimes the future is scary. I become paralyzed wishing for it not to come. When there is so much happening, it is easier just to wish it away. To wish to wake up months from now and just know that you survived it. It’s when you have so much to do, but you don’t even know how to tackle it. When your personal fears are going to come real, and you just don’t want to face them. It’s easy to want to pause time and not want to deal with the future. To pretend that maybe the future won’t happen, because you can’t seem to understand how you are going to be able to survive it.

Then it comes. The time you have been dreading. And you know what, you survive. You may not understand how you survive, but you do. You somehow meet the deadlines. Your worst personal fears don’t happen, or they do, but you are still okay. Maybe you realize, that you survived all the bad, awful days thus far, so you can survive this too.

When I was in graduate school, I was in a group that had to do a guided meditation for our class. We talked about stress and being overwhelmed by work. I don’t remember the words of it exactly, but it said to imagine all the work and everything as if it’s cake. You cannot eat the cake at once because then you will get sick. You have to eat it piece by piece and take your time. It might be a weird metaphor, but I think it works.

From now until August, I have a lot of things coming up. I started wishing summer away. I’m terrified of everything that is coming for me. I found that when I wish something away or dread its arrival, it makes everything worse. I’m no longer able to be present. It turns my anxieties and tasks into enormous obstacles that I can no longer undertake. I become overwhelmed, and that’s when I decide that it may be best to just disappear instead of even trying.

I’m terrified I’m not going to be able to graduate.
I’m terrified that I won’t be able to do everything I need to do.
I’m terrified that I can’t keep up with people around me.
I’m terrified that I’m not going to make enough money.
I’m terrified of being able to find a job.
I’m terrified that I’m not a good writer.
I’m just constantly scared and dreading for what is coming.

Being terrified is no way to live. I’m self-aware of that. I know I need to start living in the present and not worrying about the future. I know things will work out the way they are supposed to. Even knowing all that, it doesn’t make me not terrified, and that’s hard. Letting go of that fear and trusting the process – it’s strange. So taking it a step at a time is the only thing we can do.

The future is going to come, whether we like or not, but it’s not here yet, only the present is, and that is why we should live in it. Though it may take some time, and that’s okay too.

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