If only that car in front of you would hurry up so you can get to work on time.
If only your spouse would do a better job parenting the children.
If only your employees would quit taking advantage.
How many times have you felt your blood pressure rise, how many times have you repeated yourself? Nicely… and then less than nice? Perhaps even displayed unbridled anger?
If you make statements like the above, you probably have control issues. Most of us do. When something isn’t going the way we think it should, we look outside ourselves and try to make others change in order to make our lives easier.
- Intimidate that person in front of us to drive faster by riding their bumper.
- Tell your spouse how to parent the children.
- Feel your blood pressure rise every time you have to interact with THAT employee.
The reality is you are actually giving away your control AND your happiness.
It isn’t until we take responsibility for ourselves and give up trying to change the behavior of others that we are truly in control of our daily lives and our destiny.
Consider thinking about the above statements from this viewpoint:
I will leave the house earlier so I can arrive to work relaxed.
I will discuss positive parenting techniques with my spouse, we’ll agree to each parent our children to the best of our individual abilities.
I will create clear measurable expectations for my employees so that I can evaluate their performance effectively.
You can only control
- what you are willing to accept from others
Once you take responsibility for your part in the interaction, you can clearly communicate your expectations and/or needs. If your expectations and needs are not being met, accept their position or move on. As long as you allow others to affect your mood or your day, they have the control – not you.