You are not alone if you want more control in your life. Our society today moves so quickly that very hard for you to feel any sense of control.
The world feels “bigger” because we are so connected and information comes so readily and in such large amounts at us.
It is true that much of what we experience on a daily basis is out of our control. We have little say in politics and the antics of our leaders. We can’t control the weather that is becoming more intense and unpredictable with every week that goes by. We can’t even control our own budget with prices rising but income flat-lining.
So what do you do when you crave more control in your life but feel like every day you lose a bit more?
Here are a few tips to increase your sense of self-control and thus increase your sense of happiness and well-being at the same time.
Stop Trying to Please Everyone
You know everyone’s reality is personal right? You know that 5 people experiencing the same event will come away with 5 different descriptions of that event, right?
So why are you trying to mold yourself to fit the reality of everyone around you? You have no idea what will please another person because you can’t see reality through their eyes.
Let it go. Stop trying to “get it right” by pleasing everyone. At the end of the day, all you wind up doing is running yourself ragged and second-guessing your actions.
Act according to your values and your sense of what is right and wrong. Be ok and even be expecting others to not agree or be pleased with your actions. If you know going into any given situation that some will just not be happy, then you get a little more freedom and little more confidence to do things “your way.”
You gain more control over the situation by acting the way you want to.
This goes hand in hand with your people-pleasing nature – stop overthinking. When you try to please your friends, family and co-workers, your mind goes into overdrive thinking of all the possible outcomes of your actions.
Give it a rest. The more you think, the more stress and the less clarity you will have. Thus, the less control you will feel.
Stop the thinking and check in with your gut. Deep down you know how you want to react in a given situation. Do what your gut tells you is right and stop thinking 7-steps down the road as to what COULD happen.
If you spend more time in action and less time overthinking, you will get more done and you will feel more in control.
Get Comfortable with Change
The world is changing rapidly and will continue to do so. The more you can get comfortable with this aspect, the more control you will gain back in your life.
If you accept change is as natural as breathing, then you don’t have to fear it. You don’t have to cling to the way things “used to be.” Embrace new things and new ways of doing activities. View life as an adventure full of surprises.
Here’s your control factor – you get to control how you embrace the change and how you incorporate new aspects into your life. Instead of fighting and pushing against the change, flow with it.
I know this sounds a bit too “woo-woo” but really, if you want more control in your life, you have to increase your ability to be flexible. Rigid control won’t work any more.
Flexibility is in – rigidness is out.
Let Go of the Past
Again, this pairs right up with getting comfortable with change. Let go of things that are no longer relevant or no longer work. Just because you always did things a certain way, doesn’t mean that is the best way to do them today.
Just because you had certain responsibilities yesterday, doesn’t mean the same ones apply today.
Free yourself from the past as you embrace change. You get to reinvent your processes, your activities and your lifestyle on a regular basis. Decide to have fun with it and you will get control back.
Lastly, don’t expect perfection from yourself or others. We all screw up. It’s part of the human experience. Learn to give yourself some leeway to make mistakes.
I have always said you learn more from your mistakes than from getting it right. If you can lighten up and accept ahead of time that you will do something incorrectly, then you don’t have to fear it and you can keep moving forward.
Progress always puts you back into control. The more progress you make, the more control you gain. It’s when you stand still, afraid to make a mistake that you lose control. Staying still allows the world to pass you by and move without you. Where’s the control in that?
To sum it up, forgive yourself for your imperfections, flow with change, let go of the past, act instead of thinking and when you act, act according to what your gut says.
If you can do these things you can enjoy more control in your life. You will feel like you are the creator of your life instead of a helpless bystander.
You will never be able to control about 60% of what happens around you but that precious 40% is all yours.