Certainly Uncertain….

A few days ago, mid way through a telephone conversation with one of the lads I used to work with in my UX5 days, the delectable lass who joined a few months before I was due to leave overheard our conversation and asked to speak with me.

Even back then, in those early days of 2008, I was the bloke with a 5 year rolling plan complete with milestones, leading and lagging indicators and a roadmap. Her question had an air of inevitability to it; it had to do with the current iteration of the plan. Sadly, I could not give her the reassurances she was seeking – namely that the plan was still on track, and that an invite – amongst other things – would be winging it’s way to her Nigerian post box in the not too distant future.

The one thing I could not have factored into those – admittedly bullish plans – was the uncertainty around a few of the critical outcomes on which the plan flew or sank. I couldn’t have known that what looked like a door temptingly left ajar was in fact a door on its way to slamming shut with my finger stuck between it and the door frame; or that what felt like nirvana two years later would spontaneously combust over one big thing.  The uncertainties have not somehow dissolved into thin air with time. Au contraire, they in all probability have somehow become greater. More important because the outcomes are now more critical than before, and also because the interdependencies are even more convoluted.

In an ideal world, I suppose one would be able to tell with a reasonable amount of certainty what certain outcomes would be, without having to resort to Bayesian techniques, or applying the relational equivalent of hit and hope. Or maybe,  like my mother insists, I am simply over thinking it – micromanaging my outcomes so much that I end up not doing anything or losing the sense of adventure and unpredictability that not having all those backup plans brings.

Or maybe not…..

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6 thoughts on “Certainly Uncertain….

  1. Gosh, i love your style of writing, when i grow up i want to write like you. I will go with your mother on this one, life is short, play naked and jump off a cliff.

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    • Thanks a bunch…. 🙂 And yes, perhaps I do need to let the shackles off, but the potential consequences are such that even the tiniest possibility of failure can't be entertained.. 😦

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  2. Man, can I relate. At least you have backup plans, which in my personal opinion does not necessarily remove the possibility of adventure. It's YOUR plan, and you can do with it whatever the hell you want to.

    Are you writing a book yet? If not, it should be on one of those plans of yours.

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    • No, not writing a book yet… I've got absolutely no idea of what sort of book to write, although bang in the middle of my 40 things by 40 list is a poetry collection…

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  3. *siigh* you this former version of myself, with a polar opposite mother… when it comes, all your best laid plans will dissolve, despite your greatest efforts. and i can't wait to read your writing when it does. 🙂

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  4. I suppose there is always the possibility that life serves up such a curve ball (positively and/or negatively) that it totally alters everything… But then there is the (perhaps false) security of a plan… 🙂

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