Letting go of control

Ever notice yourself trying to control something or someone? When we control things, we short-change ourselves; we force an experience to be what we are comfortable with. Or we control a person to be less threatening to us. Most times the experience could have been much more rich and beautiful if we would have had the courage to allow it unfold.

Why do we control things? It's how we manage our fears. Control is always fear-based. We try to control the things that we are afraid of. It helps us maintain the illusion of feeling safe (see previous blog: The illusion of control).

The fact that control is fear-based suggests a way to let go of control. Like any behavioral pattern, changing it begins with being aware that you are trying to control something. You have see yourself doing it or about to do it. This gives you the power to change it.

Next time you observe yourself trying to control something or someone- simply ask yourself, "What am I afraid of." I guarantee there is a fear lurking beneath your wanting to control the situation. You are likely trying to control the situation in a way that allows you to avoid the thing you are afraid will happen. (Fear is future-oriented.)

Once you identify the fear, you can address it directly. You can challenge the likelihood that this terrible thing is actually going to happen. This helps take the teeth out of your fear (like the Abominable Snowman). You can take a deep breath, believe in your survivability, and walk through your fear. A natural and easy way to do this is to simply cease controlling the situation you are in and allow it to unfold.

You may find something far more rich and beautiful than you ever could have contrived. It is exciting. It is not limited by your assumptions and preconceptions. And... you feel alive.

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