Being a control-freak or wanting to impose a form of control is definitely an underlying pattern that I played out in the previous situation I shared on ‘hissy-fit’ and transcending it. In essence a cool question that comes up is ‘what am I fearing?’ when seeing that we try and control something. Example, when thinking or being scheming what someone should say, how a situation should develop, how others must behave, what the weather should be like, what someone can/can’t eat or drink, what ‘must’ be done and what ‘must not’ be done… all of these points seem quite exhausting to deal with on a constant basis, and the thing is that it exists as a point of control ‘outside of ourselves’ without realizing it’s in fact first a point of control within ourselves as the mind that is dictating what we are supposed to want/look out for or be careful with. Every time I see this pattern unfolding, it reminds me of certain family members again, wanting to keep a certain image in an almost political way where there is constant PR processes going on, where one would want to control situations and events to what one considers is appropriate and generates no disturbance to our status quo – all entirely fear based.
This point of control is definitely rooted in fear, where we want to keep a certain idea, state or condition of something to please – again – certain idea or belief of oneself, or what others should become to please oneself, how an environment should be to please oneself. I faced a lot of these patterns when living with roommates in a house and having quite a lot of ongoing irritation, anger and frustration for things simply being out of my control at all times, which means: me not being able to impose my will and how I thought things should look like and function around in all ways. I am aware I tend to be dominant, and there is no point in now going into feeling bad about it. There can be constructive ways to use this ability to be in a constant ‘overseeing’ mode of reality in order to be more present, more aware of what’s going on, yet without wanting to control the environment or a situation. Though in this also realizing that me trying to have things work entirely ‘my way’ or have little to no inconveniences is definitely not a possibility in this world where multiple variables are constantly interacting with each other. Hell, not even a ‘god’ could have ultimate control on reality.
So, what word have I been using and practicing to letting go of or managing this pattern of wanting to control? Flexibility and consideration. Flexibility is being able to adapt to whichever outcome emerges that is unforeseen, unpredictable or ‘out of the plans’ and so being able to adapt, move, change in order to integrate such situations while being directive. Otherwise, when fixating to how something ‘must’ go, we are prone to constantly be fighting against reality, constantly creating the most unnecessary frictions and conflicts. So it is better to rather make it a point to make peace with it anyways, with whatever ‘out of the plan’ conditions emerge instead of fighting it or trying to have something or someone work in a particular way. So for example yesterday I said I would not complain for how hot the day was. In the end I was able to do this for the most part, except for the very end when I said that it was a very damn hot day, and started scheming the ways to avoid going out at the same time of the day under the same heat.
Is that the way to go through life? It’s like a constant fighting. Also I see that when others do this ‘PR’ process or ‘damage control’ in a way of ‘everything is fine’ it has bothered me, because I see the flaws behind that but it happens to be that I have done exactly the same, it is another form of control instead of facing the music for what it is and work with it bit by bit. The question is then what is there to ‘save’ or ‘rescue’ from a mind that thrives of judgments, superiority and inferiority traits, delusional beliefs….? Nothing really.
Whenever I then see myself wanting to control something within an environment or toward another, I rather ask myself what do I fear losing or experimenting or exposing and why? Is it really relevant?
It is true that not everyone in this world is ready to be fully honest and have this marvelous openness right away, but if one does the little bit of enabling things to unfold as they usually do, without trying to control, we will realize that this is where the actual ‘self-test’ emerges, where we can act and live according to what we face in the moment, challenging or not = it is our reality, we can only arm ourselves with the tools of self-support to develop self-trust over time, realizing that no matter ‘what’ or ‘who’ comes my way, I know I can support me to walk through it and get to a resolution or create solutions that can be supportive in both or more ways.
Sometimes instead of wanting to immediately ‘control’ someone as in preventing them from doing something, it’s a matter of rather communicating the potential outflows or consequential development of something, sometimes even finding third party accounts or stories that can assist a person to consider the same point and so, open up the conversation in common sense to that everyone is aware of the points of responsibility to it all. This is then turning the point of control based on fear – just like parents do with their children when preventing them to do something out of fear, instead of explaining to them how things work, the consequences and so having the child decide and go through it all to learn from it – that’s how you build a sense of responsibility. There the point of control as in preventing others sometimes from ‘fuck ups’ is then turned into a learning process for everyone involved, where even if ‘mistakes’ are made, at least each person would know ‘I did it to myself’ or ‘I created this and I knew what the outcomes would be.’ This way one is instead of controlling, providing certain perspectives or input into something, so that each one can still make their own decisions while one can remain ‘at peace’ because of having explained the reasoning behind one’s attempt to control – or if already prevented – to explain or give a perspective as to why one would or would not do a certain thing with arguments that can be understandable in practical reality terms.
I consider that it is best to make some choices being aware of the uncertainty they entail – we cannot predict or control what is going to happen in something – rather than preventing oneself from moving at all because of wanting to control reality, to wait for a better moment to act, to have the perfect conditions for something –that possibly won’t ever arrive by the way – one can instead embrace the unpredictability, while remaining aware of the developments, potential consequences and make decisions based on common sense – considering what is best for all involved – that can lead to the most supportive and potentially effective outcome.
Being flexible there implies not trying to impose oneself onto others, not trying to control their lives, but rather making sure that I can instead share my perspective
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