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Through the Maze: Embracing Uncertainty and Drawing One's Path

by Lauren Fallat, LPC LPAT ATR-BC

It's the journey, not the destination. These words of wisdom can be applied to many facets of life, but arguably none more so than when it comes to defining our path in life.

There are times in our lives when we might find ourselves faced with the task of navigating various choices that could potentially open up new doors and opportunities for us as well as close others momentarily. When we consider the infinite number of choices we might face in a day, in a week, a year, it can almost seem as though the process of making a decision in our own lives parallels that of navigating a maze. The twists and turns, rabbit holes and dead end paths become part of our own stories. It becomes important to focus in on how we manage these ‘unknowns’ in our life, how we encounter our discomfort or exhilaration with trying a new way and how we learn from where we have explored and experienced in our travels through life’s many paths.

For most of us, uncertainty is one of the biggest fears we face. We're scared of making the wrong decision, of not living up to our potential, or of simply not knowing what lies ahead. It is inevitable that in life we will encounter these ‘unknowns’. We will be faced with forks in the road, challenging decisions to be made, and may be unsure of which path to take. We may even doubt our abilities and our decisions depending on the nature of the decision and perceptions and attitudes we hold while making the decision. At times, it may even feel like we are lost in a maze with no exit. The fear of uncertainty can paralyze us and keep us from moving forward.

But what if we embraced uncertainty instead? What if we saw it as an opportunity to grow and learn, to experience new things and explore new possibilities? Some of us can learn to find the ambiguous landscapes and routes in our lives as exciting and thrilling experiences. To be able to try something new, explore and seek new experiences and hold certain that even in the uncertainty of what is new, there will be something to learn about ourselves and the world. It is not that we should fear what we do not know, but that we should fear not having tried, not having given ourselves an opportunity to make known what we may not have experienced already. As we know in the ana

For instance, whether you're just starting out in your career or you've been at it for years, the journey to finding your passion and defining your path can be a long and difficult one. Along the way, you'll face countless challenges and uncertainties, that is to be accepted and expected. It is the attitude and way in which you perceive these challenges that can lead you not in the ‘right’ direction, but to the right opportunity for growth.

To translate these ideas into an art directive, we can simply gather a piece of drawing paper. If you will be using colored pencils or thin-tipped markers, then 9x12” paper should be an appropriate size, but feel free to make the surface smaller or larger for your needs. Take a moment to breathe in and out as you decide where to begin your maze drawing. You might start from the center, the bottom left, the middle right, off-center, whatever you feel is best for your path. Create a maze in whatever pattern, shape and direction you choose. Feel free to look at images for inspiration and consider what it might be like to navigate through the twists, turns, dead ends and loops.

Take your time in creating the maze and allow it to be a meditative process of adding lines and changing directions as you go. Think about how it is to create a maze-to contemplate ahead of time the areas and pathways that will lead to a successful journey and ones that will try to steer you off path. In addition to creating this maze, you might find it helpful to journal thoughts on the image that you created and reflect on your own personal connection to this type of learning and navigating through unknowns.

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