What can you control

“You can Control your actions but not the Reactions to your actions”. A statement a colleague of mine once made and I never forgot those words. I decided to elaborate more on that thought. What are you really controlling in your life? I ask. 

I am not discussing the issue of people trying to control others. Like a husband or wife trying to control each other or a parent controlling their children or even friends controlling each other in some aspect. These types of control issues are valid and real. They do exist in our lives. It has nothing to do with culture or religion, it’s more of a human nature characteristic. We all want to be in control of our lives and sometimes we take it too far and start controlling even the people in our lives; or so we think.

Given; the desire to be in control is a characteristic that we are born with.  Therefore we learn along our journey, that we may think we control everything, but in reality we control nothing. We have this illusion that if we calculate our moves, then the outcome will be exactly what we want. One day you wake up and realize, you were living in a dream and now it’s time to face reality. We are not in control of our lives nor the way others react to us. We control nothing.

If you are aware of the way you speak and the way you act, then that is as far as you can control. You can correct yourself. You can adapt to situations. You are the one who decides whether to change a certain thing you say or do. But no one can make you. It’s your decision. You do it because you want to. How people react to your changes, is up to them. You cannot control that. And you cannot try to make someone understand where you are coming from or how you are feeling or the motivation behind your decisions. No one will ever be in your shoes no matter how hard they try.

You can only control yourself, but you have no control over others’ minds or emotions. People ‘s perception is theirs. People’s understanding is also theirs. And the sooner you grasp that reality, the less stress you will feel. You will stop trying to make so much effort to explain yourself. The more you explain, the more people won’t get you. And the more you feel you need to justify your actions, the more they will criticize you and make you feel bad about who and what you choose to be.

Similarly, you do not have control of the outcomes of your calculated or non-calculated moves.  You can plan all you want, in the end, what will happen will be out of your hands. You can never control a result. You can only try your best and sit back and watch things unfold.  It is better than stressing about every little move you make.  It is good to be prepared and to anticipate, but it is foolish to think you can influence things to magically happen as you wished it. Be realistic for once and you will see the results.  The more you let go of the end result, the more things might work out in your favor. Focus your energy on you and on your part of the equation and the rest, let it be.

So let it go, let go of trying to control people’s reactions to your choices in life. Live your life as you wish. There will always be those who will agree and those who disagree. Are you going to change yourself according to what others expect of you?  Ask yourself: how long will you keep living your life trying to please everyone around you, trying to make them understand you, accept you and agree with you. Haven’t you realized it’s a lost battle? It is so because it was never meant to be this way. You live your life for you. They live their life for themselves. It’s as simple as that. So why are we complicating it unnecessarily? I ask you!!


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