I alluded to this in my post about my Christmas miracle, but when it comes to relinquishing control, I’m not winning any awards anytime soon.
I mean, I’m not a control freak in a full-blown Paris Geller sort-of-a-way (props to you if you get that reference), but more so just in the way that when I don’t see things going how I visualized them going, I start to panic a little.
I think this comes from having an overly active imagination.
Even as a kid, whenever there was an exciting trip or big event coming up in my life, I would get so excited about it, to the point where I started visualizing every detail down to what I would say, what I would wear, and how I would feel. I would even start making up scenarios, creating storylines in my head about how I would react to possible situations.
And, when my little scenarios started playing out very differently than I expected, well, I always became some combination of disappointed, frustrated, anxious, and just plain sad at times.
Clearly, this is not a healthy way to live.
And so, to start relinquishing control, it’s become very obvious to me that I need to stop setting expectations about events, or at least, not setting such a high expectations where I leave no room for flexibility.
Because, you see, I think flexibility is key to striking a balance between being reasonably excited about something, but also not being let down when it doesn’t happen the exact way you planned.
Let me give you another example:
I’m planing on booking a vacation with some friends in the new year. It will likely be an all inclusive trip at some Caribbean resort.
Originally, the plan had been Jamaica, with a fairly large group of us.
Today, I found out that we’re now looking at Punta Cana, and the group has dropped in numbers.
Almost immediately, I found myself retreating.
This wasn’t the trip I planned! This wasn’t what I envisioned!
In fact, I was having a hard time envisioning the trip at all now. I didn’t know what to expect with this new location and new group.
And so, in my signature fashion, I went into “control mode.” I hopped on the computer and started researching, seeing if I could find a better deal or a different resort.
It wasn’t until I had done about 5 different searches that I stopped myself…
In what world would I ever not enjoy an all-inclusive vacation, with my good friends, at a beautiful resort in the Caribbean? How could I even be considering not going? Was I only going into this resistance mode because my need to control had been taken away from me?
Wow, talk about a wake up call!
It took me about another 30 minutes to fully convince myself that this was the right choice, and to give the go-ahead to book.
The morale of my story here: I don’t always need to have control of every situation. I don’t always need to be able to perfectly envision every detail. And, without a doubt, I don’t always need to overthink things to such an extent that I end up wasting precious time in my own head, worrying about things that don’t need to be a concern.
I know that this need to control situations is engrained somewhere deep into who I am, and while I certainly think this controlling nature has benefitted me in some scenarios, it’s also probably hurt me others.
And so, I end Day 10 of my Daily Blogging Challenge with a declaration and promise to myself to be more flexible, to relinquish control, and to not be so married to my ideas of how things should be.
Sometimes it’s okay to go with the flow.
Sometimes it’s okay to let other people grab hold of the reins.
And yes, sometimes not knowing what’s going to happen in your day can really be the sweetest part about living life.
It’s time to live life a little more organically!
Who’s with me?
If you’re interested, here are some of my favorite posts from my Daily Blogging Challenge:
1) How Fainting On A Plane Changed My Life (this is all about my struggle with anxiety. I hope it can help you if you also struggle)
2) Break A PromiseTo Yourself And Face The Consequences (probably the most important article of the bunch)