Saturday, January 14, 2012

Predicting the Future

Most of it dabble in it. It’s human nature to want to know what the future will bring. Maybe that’s what really separates us from the animals.

It has survival value. We prepare for hard times and lean years. We look at a poor harvest and know the winter might be tough if something isn’t done.

Predicting the future works pretty good if you follow trends. The more data you can gather, the easier it is to get a handle on what’s going on. The Internet has facilitated access to mountains of data. It takes real talent to separate the wheat from the chaff. Skilled researchers often get a pretty good window into the future.

That works great for all the knowns. As prepared human beings, we do our best to assess the trends and risks and take what actions we can.

Once in a while events come from so far outside our normal experience that we couldn’t see it coming. Brand new things appear that have no back-trail to the past. It’s impossible to see it before it arrives. Investors speak of Black Swan events: unique circumstances that go against every past trend.

When life throws a random wave your way, the best thing you can do is surf it. Stay on top and use the energy for one heck of a ride.

We tend to think of these events in the negative. It’s true our old preparations and responses no longer work. The sooner a person recognizes the rules have changed, the sooner they can respond. The sooner they can surf that wave. The sooner they can find the good in the new situation.

On a day to day level, practice surfing the random wave. Everyday randomness can throw things your way. Recognize those blips and see what you can do with them. Imagine you are taking your wife to your favorite restaurant. Normally, it’s easy to get a table, but for some random reason, today the place is packed. Do you grumble and wait it out, or do you use this opportunity to check out a new place and have a new experience? It might turn to be wonderful.

When a big event comes you’ll have experience in striking out in new directions. There’s a feeling, a rush, when you successfully navigate the new.

Universe favors the bold.

When the unforeseen arrives, don’t panic in fear. See what you can do with the new circumstances. It might be fun. It’s sure to be interesting.


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