I have been thinking a lot about anticipating the future. About how a single decision today may greatly affect everything I do from that point on. I have been thinking about it in the context of job searching. A good or bad interview can radically change where I work, who I work with, when I work and where I might look for motivation and purpose. I want to rein in the future and take control of it so that I can determine how it will unfold.

And then I had an interesting realization. On several occasions I have spontaneously decided to start folding something or other and then presented a sheet of paper and began folding. Half way through someone inevitably asks what it is that I am trying to fold. Then they look carefully at what I have done so far and try to anticipate the final product. They say it will be a duck, or a lion or a spider or a chair. They make wild assertions about what the different flaps represent. They are legs, ears, arms and wings all at the same time.

I think that the observer making wild predictions regarding my folding is like me trying to make wild predictions regarding my future.

Now, in some ways, there is no parallel here since an experienced folder can look even more carefully and likely anticipate far better than an inexperienced one. The paper is bound by certain mathematical laws and someone who is well versed in those laws can accurately predict how they can combine. But in life there is no clear guide telling me what happens if I fold my career diagonally. Or squash fold my friendships. Or pedal fold my responsibilities. It occurs to me now (as it has to many people at many points in their lives) that the future is mystery. It is outside our grasp.

What rules are there when they are often broken? A friend of mine regularly notes that if he had not flown across the country to interview for a job that he believed himself unqualified for, he would not have met any of the friends he has today. I radically different future. And one that cannot be efficiently unfolded if it turns out to be a mistake.

So I guess I may as well not try and anticipate too much. There are some large folds that are clearer. Like, do I stay in Minnesota for now? Well, that's the only one I can think of at the moment. The smaller folds will work themselves out. I'll have to address them as I meet them.

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