“If you want real control, drop the illusion of control; let life have you. It does anyway.” – Byron Katie
I have come to realise I have complete control over three things, what I think, what I say and how I act. Some things can be planned or managed, but here are four and a half things (you’ll get the half when you see it) that I have found I absolutely can NOT control and life is just lived better letting go of them…
No matter what, no matter how hard you rain dance or how well you salute the sun, you can not control the weather, and you know what? I love that! It reminds me how much bigger the world is then my own personal problems are, it reminds me to live in the moment and not wait for sunny weather to go outside or “a rainy day” to start a project, because you can be at the beach in scorching hot sun and the next minute you’re gathering your towels in a rapid hurry from the tropical thunderstorm that’s just surprised you! It’s about having the mindset when people ask me when I think it might stop raining so we can go for a run and me replying “well, that’s up to the weather, but hey, we’re going to be sweating anyway, may as well have a cool off from the rain!” Because I have NO IDEA when it’s going to stop raining or what time the sun will shine, but I do know, I’m not going to stop living in order to wait for it!
2. Someone else.
I read a fantastic quote once, “The way someone treats you is a reflection of them, not of you.” This is so important to remember in life! You can influence someones opinion or perspective, you can challenge someone to a healthy debate, you can ask someone to do things for you, and sometimes they will, but sometimes they wont, and that’s a-o-k! You can not attempt to control a person, nor should you want to, because you yourself would want to feel like you always have your own choices and freedom, right? Sometimes a situation will arise and someones actions or reactions aren’t what you wanted and often in that situation it can turn into a negative action and both of you are left feeling misunderstood and invalidated. I try to approach life with the mentality “All I can control is myself and my actions and if I focus on being the person that I want to be, the universe will flow naturally around me.” That’s not saying, everything’s always going to be honky dory, but it’s saying even when it’s not, all I can do about it is just continue working on being a better me and whatever will be will be. Master that mentality and you’re already a thousand steps ahead of the person having a road rage attack at you on the highway, let them be, you’ll sleep better!
3. What the Heart Wants.
Oh, heart, you little thumper you! You’re like your own separate entity in my body unlike any other organ and as much as I’ve tried to deny you, you ultimately win, each and every time! Have you ever heard someone say “Be careful with my lungs?”, “Don’t break my brain?” or “I feel it with every inch of my liver?” No, you haven’t, that’s just silly, because no other organ is thought of the way the heart is, the symbol of love, flipping your world upside down at any given moment. I don’t just mean love for another person either, it could be love for what you do too, the cliche case of someone suggesting you spend the next ten years in a successful-something-degree but you’re like, but I really, really just want to bake cupcakes the rest of my life, I’m going to open my shop, sorry guys! Or take the Gap Year for instance, that’s your heart telling you that you need to go out and find what you’re going to love the rest of your life. You can fight it, you can deny to yourself, you can even try to convince yourself you don’t love something or someone, but ultimately, the heart uncontrollably wants what it wants.
My mantra this year “I will not let time hinder me.” I spent the first years of my twenties feeling uncomfortable about my age because I thought I had to have it all figured out and since I hadn’t yet I didn’t want to get any older until I had, but do you think that stopped my birthday rolling around each year? Nope! We as human beings put a time limit on things, you have to have a career idea by 25, you should be married by 30, you can only retire when you’re 60, quick, do this before you run out of time! Do you see time “running out” cause I sure don’t. You are as young as you feel! You can’t control time but you can plan what you do with it. It’s not going anywhere, sure, you’re going to get older but that’s the beauty of life! You don’t want to live the same day twice and that’s what stopping time would do, who cares about the wrinkles, they’re a story! You can change your career path from being a CEO at 40 to avid Game Developer at 41 or 52 or 78!! Life is up to you, time is just what makes it spin around, so enjoy it and stop trying to control it, you can have your cake and eat it too, you can plan while still going with the flow, you don’t want to look back and think “I wish…”
So here’s my half, and I’ve called it a half because people will argue with me and say of course you can control it, make-ups, surgery etc etc but is that really “controlling” it, sometimes if it’s not applied right it’s not even enhancing it. I’m definitely not anti-surgery or make-up or any beauty enhancers really, but I AM anti-overdosing it. It goes with time above, you’re going to get older and your looks will change, not fade, because there’s beauty to the wisdom, but change, and that is a good thing too otherwise you spend your life obsessing over turning back the clock. This isn’t just aimed at women too because I know a lot of men that struggle with beauty as well. The other reason I called it a half because I will be completely unbiased and say that you can control it, certain aspects of it, like the beauty within, I know it sounds cheesy but oh-so-overlooked! Remember Audrey Hepburn saying “Happy girls are the prettiest” or a quote from Annie “You’re never fully dressed without a smile” both of these are referring to your interior having an effect of your exterior. Have you ever met someone somewhat average looking at first, but after spending just a mere 30minutes with them have found them to be so darn attractive, just radiating with beauty because their personality enhances them SO much? Well, that’s the part you CAN control. You don’t have to put down the magazine or let yourself “go” but just make sure you are focusing on the interior beauty just as much as the exterior because at the very end of it all, that’s the beauty that will remain, you can’t control the exterior and if you spend your 30’s, 40’s and 50’s trying to you will end up wrinkle and grey-hair obsessed with low self-esteem and you are better then that! Love yourself, live your life and lead the way for a more positive outlook for the young people in your life that you will leave a lasting impression with.
So there you have it! Hope this helps your perspective like it has mine and I look forward to sharing more personal growth lessons like this one, have an amazing day, you deserve it!
*the photos in this post are not my own*