When I was in college, in the PA program, they told us “If you aren’t type A personality now, you will be by the time we get through with you”.
It’s true. Not so much that they brain washed us, but it was a valid acknowledgement that those of us who chose the profession have a tendency toward control freakiness. My sister called it bossy. I told her it was leadership ability.
She didn’t buy it either.
Truth is, it seems humans like a little structure and a sense of control…even if it is false one, like pushing the elevator button a bunch of times just to make sure the signal got through or (even more laughably) to make it go faster. For some of us, we like the driver’s seat more than others. But even the most laid-back of us like to have some degree of control.
Luckily we do. The problem is that sometimes the driver’s seat is located in weird places. The trick is to find it. The trick to finding it is, in my experience, a big picture look at things and some good old Buddhist-style detachment.
That isn’t to say you don’t give a rip about anything. It just means that you are less attached to how things turn out. You might have to give up a little control in some places to gain a lot in others.
Emotions are what they are. You don’t necessarily choose them…they happen at the speed of light. But you can control where they go and turn down the volume after a minute or two. You don’t control the genuine emotion…but you can control what you do with it. You may not be able to dictate the condition of traffic or the road…but you have the steering wheel, you control how the car reacts to all the chaos out there. You control the temperature inside the car, no matter what nasty weather is outside…metaphorically speaking, anyway.
We can’t control what other people think, do, say, or feel…but you can control how you nurse the wounds or celebrate the joy other people bring into our lives.
A little control can go a long way toward relieving stress. You might not be able to brow-beat reality into meeting your exact expectations…but there is still a lot of controlling you can do – from the inside out.
May your steering wheel turn easy on this merry monday 😀