Being in Control Means Letting Go!

spirit Nov 30, 2013

You’ve made plans to accomplish a goal. It could be an event that you are planning or the meeting you are preparing for. Perhaps you have given advice to a friend and are awaiting the outcome of their decision. Whatever it is, you have invested time, effort, and perhaps some emotion into the planned outcome and it is causing you a lot of stress. Why?

Because it is our natural inclination to want everything to go well; whether it’s for our benefit or for the benefit of someone that we care about or love, we desire the outcome to be a positive one.  It is our need to be in control of the things that impact (directly or indirectly) our lives.

Sometimes just a positive outcome is not enough if it is not the one that we planned or anticipated and then we become dissatisfied, disappointed, or angry. All of our hard work seems to be for nothing and our stress or concern may seem unappreciated. But is that really the case?

Are we so caught up sometimes in our own personal perception of what the right result should be that we miss out on what we may have learned along the way? Were there positive lessons to be learned on the journey to accomplishing our goal that can benefit us in the future? For example, learning a new skill or making new business contacts? Was there a new understanding to be gained in the relationship we have with a loved one? Did we listen to what they really wanted and how they felt? In other words, did we offer advice based on how they felt or based on our own perception of what they need?

Letting go of the expectation of what the outcome should help to alleviate the stress when something does not go according to plan. When you are able to say: I’ve done my best and that’s all I can do; you allow yourself room to breathe. Trying so desperately to stay in control of everything that happens in your life actually forces you to lose control of something. Holding on too tightly to all aspects of life means that there is something that will fight for freedom from your grasp and it might just be the thing that is most important to you. Whether it is your career, your financial status, or your personal relationships; unwavering focus and need for control over these things can sometimes be to our detriment.

Even when the result is not a positive one, there is still a lesson to be learned. 

The blessing/miracle comes from the awareness that you have an opportunity to learn something.

We cannot always control the outcome of our life and that of those we love. But while we are still able to share in their lives, we are blessed. There will be disappointing moments in our professional lives that set us back, but while we may be knocked down, we can still get up.

Letting go of the outcome does not mean that we have relinquished our control; it is actually the opposite in many cases. It allows us to be more in control of our emotions. We can avoid the stress and anger and sometimes emotional outbursts that come with being too invested in the outcome of a situation. We are able to step back from the issue or event and look objectively at the results. Sometimes we will see where although the outcome was not what we planned it is still a good one or if it has turned out poorly, we are able to assess where things went wrong and how to correct it or how to do things differently the next time. But when we fight so vigorously for control over situations in our personal and professional lives, we cause ourselves and the people closely associated with us undue emotional hardship and when all is said and done, we have gained nothing and may have caused more stress than the effort was worth.

So as a result, no matter what the outcome is, we are more in control of ourselves, which is really the only thing that we truly can control. 

So ask yourselves this…

Are you willing to let go of your expectations in order to have more control of your life? Let us know in the comment section below.

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