[Monday Message] Control Issues

The only thing you have control over are your actions and reactions (and really, that level of control is dependent on your level of self awareness). Any time you buy into the illusion that you have control over more than that, you are setting yourself up for frustration and burn out. Control issues are the fast track to overwhelm; no one can juggle all the things. That is not to say you can’t influence other things, but you cannot control them.

During this Mercury Retrograde, remember that you can control the information that you put out, but you are never going to be able to control how people receive that information. It’s amazing what kind of filters people listen through, even when the energy isn’t slowed down. The more consciously and deliberately you communicate, at any time, but especially now, the more likely you are to get at least part of your point across.

It is up to you to voice your needs and your boundaries. As annoying as it might be, no one is under and obligation to honor them. If you conduct yourself in a kind and honorable manner, people are more likely to help you out or not trample your boundaries. Take care to avoid the manipulative characteristic of people pleasing, though – it’s just another form of control issue, and won’t get you nearly the results you think it should.

If you don’t know whether you have control issues or not, here are some questions you can ask yourself:

    Are you concerned with process of how a thing is done rather than the outcome of the action?
    Are you preoccupied with what people think about you?
    Do you think that you can manipulate others into complying with your wishes?
    Do you feel the need to make everyone around you happy with you?

Control issues come from fear, either that you’re not going to get something you want or that you’re going to lose something you have. Fear comes from the negative ego, and is the illusion of the absence of The Divine. The problem is that, the more you try to control your environment and the people around you, the less control you have over anything, including yourself, and those fears grow stronger.

The only thing you have control over are your actions and reactions.

If you’re in fear today, try these steps:

  • Find the actually verifiable information. Where am I? Am I warm or cold? Is it light or dark? What do I smell? What do I see? What do I hear? What am I physically feeling?
  • Get right-sized. What part did I play in setting up the situation that is causing me discomfort? How important is this situation in the grand scheme of things? How invested am I in being right?
  • Redirect the attention. What can I focus on that’s not ego-based? How can I get out of myself for a minute? Where can I be of useful service, not in a way that will feed my ego, but in a way that will actually lighten someone else’s burden?
  • The only thing you have control over are your actions and reactions.

    Eventually, this becomes a comforting truth rather than an agitating fear. Really.

    This post is part of a series called Monday Message, based on that day’s reflection from 365 Days to Enlightenment (authorized versions are currently out of print, working on a new edition). Check back next Monday for another one! You can also sign up for the Daily Message on my mailing list if you’d like to receive a new reflection every day. I also often post them to Instagram, if that’s a medium you enjoy.

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