In an ideal world, it would be great to know that there are things one can actually be sure about. The feeling we love to have that reminds of the person (or people) we could rely on, when we were children. In the complicated world of emotions and feelings that we have created for ourselves, it becomes apparent eventually that it is unrealistic to have such hopes or expectations. Someone or an occurrence always crops up to disrupt things. Does this mean it is best to be cynical in one’s worldview? The answer to that question would have to depend on each individual and his or her coping mechanisms.
Self reliance is a healthy way to face the world. It might not be as exhilarating as having the feeling that other people have one’s back in moments of adversity, but it is probably one of the few ways that folks can get close to feeling sure about the way matters could turn out.
But even when we rely on ourselves, there are times when we run out of the energy needed to overcome difficulties or solve problems. When we look back on those moments, we can choose to beat ourselves up emotionally or we can simply accept that doing our best wasn’t enough on that occasion.
Is the need to be sure about things connected to perfectionism? Obviously, the world would be a very different place if we didn’t have terms of reference such as clocks, calendars and timetables, for example.
Perhaps there is a middle way, between the preferences of those who would like to “obey the breeze” and of those who feel happiest when they function within a tightly structured set of conventions. Has anyone identified examples of best practice in this regard?