How many times in life have you heard the expression, “ready or not, here I come”? This is such a common saying yet no one ever questions the big “or not”. Society puts such pressure on us to constantly be ready for everything this crazy life throws our way. However, this is simply unrealistic. The truth is, we are never completely ready for anything, which used to terrify me. Until my best friend changed the way I posed the question. We are never completely ready for anything; we just have to be ready enough. This does not come naturally. It is a mindset we must train our brains to do. Life is scary, this is undeniable. Every day we make decisions both big and small that we can never be completely sure of or predict all the possible outcomes of. So what do we do? Run? Panic? No. Just accept that being ready enough IS okay. By simply changing your mindset and answer to this common question, you can eliminate unrealistic expectations, fears of failure, and finally accept life’s unpredictability.

I am sure that many of you are guilty of setting unrealistic expectations for yourself. I find this to be especially true at the beginning of a new school year. Last September I signed up for seven clubs and am now only in one. This is by no means a failure; I was simply unrealistic with how many commitments I could take on at once. We frequently take on too much assuming we are “ready” and “if not” we view ourselves as failures. By being strictly “ready” one can easily fall into two traps. Taking on too much at once then feeling like a failure when you can’t do everything or never trying anything and setting the bar too low. Either way, you will be disappointed by the outcome because being 100% ready comes with unnecessary stress.

Fears of failure result from a deep seeded sense of perfection our society instills. We are extremists who want to appear as strong and never weak. We must be ready for anything we say we are and never have any setbacks right? Wrong! Perfection is the enemy of good. Stop asking yourself if you are ready then beating yourself up when the results are less than perfect. Be ready enough and see what comes of it. Try your best because that’s all anyone can do. Don’t be perfect just be ready.

The unpredictability of life is something most perfectionists hate. The truth behind expecting the unexpected means there really is no ready. How can anyone be ready when life isn’t always in our hands directly. This goes along with a fear of failure and desire for perfection. By acknowledging that the future is uncertain, the need to always be ready lessens. How can even the most perfect of people (or so they appear) be fully braced for every inconsistency. We may not always be ready for a storm but we can at least bring an umbrella. Go into life prepared, excited, and ready enough. It is true that whether you are ready or not, life will go on. This is a positive and necessary part of all journeys. Ready or not enough, here you come.