Through a Jungian Lens

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Anxiety and the Unknown

with 2 comments

A Portrait of a Canadian Winter

A Portrait of a Canadian Winter

Yes, this is the temperature as I am writing this blog post. The sun has come out and it has warmed up from the -25 C that was the norm for the past few days. A look at the long term forecast tells me that we can expect more of this more moderate winter conditions until our departure for Latin America.

Preparing for a change of climate and change of culture is time consuming as well as being filled with some anxiety. Having booked our accommodations on-line in places we have never before visited, we are left with more unknowns than known conditions. Will the various apartments and cottages meet our basic expectations? Will we have good access to local stores so that we can live as if we are at home, cooking our own meals? Will there be enough local diversions to stave off boredom that would come from too much sitting around? Have we packed enough stuff to meet our needs? Have we packed too much stuff that will just weigh us down as we travel from one locale to another? Will I be able to navigate the country of Belize satisfactorily while we are weighed down with our backpacks? Will my knowledge of Spanish be sufficient for interacting with local people? Will there be good enough access to Internet to allow me to connect with you here? Questions, questions, questions.

Of course, I have done my homework in hopes of making this journey of three months a fairly stress-free journey. At the time, the most anxiety comes from a different question, “Will my camera arrive back in Canada before we leave?” While visiting my grandchildren in America, I left my camera in their home when we left to return to our home. The camera has been packaged up and sent to us by one of the major carriers. It is supposed to be here by January 4th, a good thing since we leave our home on January 7th. But of course, the gods and goddesses have to be willing to allow the camera to get here without incident. If fate decided differently, I at least have another camera I can use, the one I used to take today’s photo. It isn’t a DSLR, but it is a decent camera for a point-and-shoot model.


Written by Robert G. Longpré

December 29, 2012 at 9:39 am

2 Responses

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  1. Dear Robert,
    Thank you for this Post in which you highlighted anxiety that we humans are faced with and with I am also very familiar.

    In a way I have come to terms with this sort of anxiety and boxed it under my reminder of “What If” – and that’s why “maybe” I can try to offer you my helping hand in the issue by writing how I deal with the issue.
    Of course I have to become aware of the issue, but that is not so hard.

    Let’s say that I did my home work for a trip, I booked my accommodations, and made the Post send me my Camera – so it is settled, it is definite and I can’t change it.

    After this, when starting to allow the “What If” questions bothering me, I consider this a waste of time that distracts me from the present.

    Suppose, when I have arrived and find my accommodations not as I expected them to be – well, then I am offered an opportunity to use my inventivity, creativity and imagination to cope with the problem.
    And so I can cope with problems that arise after I have made final decisions.
    I think another important thing is that when I discover that things are not as I expected in my planning – the worse thing that can overcome me is to get angry.
    The other option to accept things as they are but stay annoyed is not a good one either, because it eats you.

    So in these situations I try to direct my feelings and thinking in the direction of adventure, of new expectations as a challenge to deal with the possibilities that are connected with my creativity – in short, I try to be in command of my “mood”, to be aware of the circumstances that I am confronted with.
    Some people address this as a way of practicing positive thinking – I for myself keep it simple and address it as an exciting mood to experience new ways to discover.

    Or as Jung use to say, question myself, what is the sense/meaning of things.

    Opa Bear

    December 30, 2012 at 6:04 am

    • I have to admit that the anxiety came more from not meeting the needs and expectations of my good wife, of disappointing. I know that I am responsible for my own feelings of anxiety, but as a mate, I do take seriously, my responsibility for my partner who would not venture so far from “home” without some sort of guarantee of the unknown being easier to navigate with someone trusted taking care of the details. For me, personally, there is no fear in being in a strange place, floating with ambiguity and the unknown.


      January 11, 2013 at 5:57 pm

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