Are You Lost? Read This
"Not all those who wander are lost." - J.R.R. Tolkien
Do you know where you are? Where you're going? Even better, do you remember where you've been? At times, life feels like a labyrinth, full of wrong turns, dead-ends, and even a few minotaurs.
The emotional experience of "lost" is uncomfortable. I once lost my grandmother in a K-mart when I was very young (pre-cellphone days) and still remember the "roller-coaster feeling" in my stomach. Eventually, I had to page her over the store intercom. It worked, but it wasn't the shopping trip either of us had in mind.
Not knowing where you're headed is scary because it's human nature to be "prepared". It's the same reason we're afraid of the dark. E.g. your basement steps--you might've walked down them thousands of times, yet when the light's off, suddenly they're totally different and the chances of being ambushed by a monster increase significantly. We love new experiences (exotic vacations, new restaurants, etc.) but we appreciate time to mentally prepare prior to engagement.
Uncertainty is a source of stress if you allow it to influence your thinking and behavior. When you expect the worst, you're "resisting". Rather than spin yourself in circles trying to control the uncontrollable, consider Bruce Lee's famous advice, "be like water." When water encounters obstacles, it bends, flows, splashes, and finds another way around. It doesn't stay the same--if you want consistency, forget about it. Life is perpetual change. The more you resist, the more turbulent your journey.
I'm not suggesting you live like a leaf floating down a stream--quite the opposite in fact. I follow my passions where they take me, I work persistently to live a life I'm proud of and that represents some form of my aspirations. But if and when you feel "lost", it's life's cue to (not freak out) take time to pause, ask questions, and breathe. If you can't imagine where you want to go, think about where you've been. The "trail" will find itself in time.