We're all a little bit of a control freak deep down inside. We spend hours worrying, stressing out, obsessing over details, weighing pro’s and con’s and wishing we could see the future so we can know that we are on the right path.
Sometimes we forget that many factors are simply out of our control. When we work hard to control everything- even the unpredictable, it is a sign that we’re relying too much on ourselves and not enough on the bigger picture, or our destiny. Every failure, every wrong turn, every moment of stagnation- counts towards something that’s already in motion. Unfortunately we continue to make detailed 10 year plans and stressing over tiny details, setting extremely rigid expectations for our lives. When we do this, we leave no room for humanness or grace to intervene.
After beating an eating disorder, failing my first company, experiencing multiple heartbreaks and even by just being a matchmaker- I can say I’ve learned a lot about what people can and cannot control. If you’re worried, stressed or just plain unhappy, there’s a chance you’re trying to control too much in your life. Here's a reminder of the things you cannot control, and what you can focus on instead.
Timing- As a matchmaker I spoke to so many people who were trying to control the timeline of their life. These people thought they’d be married by now. Heck, they thought they’d be married with kids yesterday. There is no sense in living life in this state of “missing out” or “feeling behind.” It’s not productive nor present and it will cause a lot of unnecessary pain.
Here’s what you can control: Focus on increasing your patience and faith that the right person, or whatever you’re waiting for, will arrive. Your timeline is already perfectly designed. Expect the good things to arrive when they're meant to.
People- While you might be able to influence a person to think or act a certain way, you will never be able to control or know exactly what they think, feel, or act. Some of these things include: their conscious and unconscious thoughts, their past, their upbringing, their emotional trauma, their timeline, their health and their family. You will also never know for sure how someone will react to different experiences or how they will react to you.
Here’s what you can control: Focus on controlling or managing how you react to people and what they do. Perhaps you get very defensive when criticized. Maybe you can build awareness of this and broaden your perspective to help you feel more peaceful during those situations.
Your body- For my readers who struggle with eating and body image, this one’s for you. When I had my eating disorder, I was in denial of my natural body structure . I wanted my hips bones to be 1 inch more narrow, I wanted my shoulders to be petite and I wanted my feet to be a size 9 instead of a 10.5. I was starving myself to change the things that I couldn't change. No diet will ever change your height, your facial structure, the setting of your hips, the curve of your spine, the length of your legs, the size of your feet, the broadness of your shoulders, etc. Your body’s natural state can only vary within a certain realm of biology. Be kind and forgiving with yourself and allow for flexibility within that biological realm. It is unhealthy to push the limits or deny your genetic reality.
Here’s what you can control: You can control your thoughts. Focus on changing your mindset towards one that is more kind to yourself, forgiving and healing.