How To Give Up Control
In today's fast-moving society, we can find ourselves in a complete scramble, just trying to keep ends tied.
Before our life takes over, we do everything in our power to keep it in check. Or in more realistic terms, we try to keep our shit under control.
Don't get me wrong; control has its place. However, it is far too easy for it to become a means of stripping away the beauty of spontaneity.
This life we have – this one life we all have been given – is meant for us to enjoy. If you want to know what your life mission is, here it is: joy.
It's really that simple.
But let's get back to this idea of control: I would be lying if I told you I wasn't guilty of it myself.
I spend days on end trying to predict or manipulate a meaningless event. But even after numerous checklists and timelines, as well as informing all relevant parties of my meticulous plans, things still don't go my way.
So, why do I continue to do this? I do it because the idea of something going wrong seems far more difficult to reconcile than the incessant scramble I put myself through before the event even occurs.
What I have uncovered is this need for control is common for those of us who have felt out of control at some point in our lives. I believe this is due to suffering a traumatic experience, such as a parents' divorce, some varying type of abuse, or even childhood bullying.
These types of traumatic experiences leave us feeling helpless. So, our first attempt to cope is to gain control of the uncontrollable.
Thus, the beginning of childhood trauma defines our current patterns and ways of being.
Luckily, the person you are now does not have to define who you become. We can tackle the issues now and learn to give up some of the control.
And when we do... oh, what freedom! The freedom to feel that whatever happens is OK because we've found healthier ways to cope with it.
Life is all about the unknown, and allowing ourselves to truly surrender in the moment.
Now, I have a question I believe is important to ask you: Have you ever found yourself in a place in time that you may have waited forever for?
For example, say you finally met your dream guy. You're walking down the city streets, and he takes your hand and guides you to your all-time favorite restaurant.
You feel a huge chill go through you, as if the universe has finally answered your prayers.
Then, that thought comes in. It's a dreadful thought. It says, "I don't deserve this."
So now, your thoughts start running downhill, and you worry about everything that could go wrong. You start looking over the menu, scanning for foods you think won't make you look like a pig.
You make frequent trips to the bathroom to re-apply your makeup, so he doesn't notice any blemishes. He's asking you questions, and you're so concerned with what he thinks of you, you're embellishing stories just to impress him.
Now, let's fast forward to three hours later: You're at home, and the date is over.
You think back in your mind about the events of the night and ask yourself, "Why am I not happy? I've been waiting for this moment for years, but now I can't comprehend why I don't feel good."
The reason being is because you didn't allow yourself to give up control. The only way to enjoy life fully is to surrender yourself to the moment.
Now, re-imagine the date with a completely different frame of mind. You choose to think, "I am who I am. If he doesn't like me, fine. But I'm going to be true to myself, and in the end, I don't want someone who doesn't truly appreciate me."
I guarantee that even if the date didn't go well, you'd go home feeling happy because you chose to be true to yourself, regardless of the outcome.
This is called relinquishing control.
Stop believing you need to have everything figured out. Stop thinking you have all the answers: You don't.
Too many of us believe life is an uphill battle, but it doesn't have to be.
Trust you are being guided. Give up the control and see what blessings the universe provides you with when you choose to do so.