Can You Let Go of What You Can’t Control?
Have you ever worn yourself out thinking about or trying to change what’s beyond your control? I have. It’s demoralizing and exhausting. And it doesn’t work. Knowing the difference between what you can and can’t control is critical. Learning to let go of what you can’t control helps you make the best of what’s happening and strengthens your ability to respond and move forward.
What you can’t control:
1. Other people: We cannot control the thoughts, actions, choices, behaviors, or opinions of others. Each person has their own free will and autonomy.
2. The past: We cannot change what has already happened. The past is behind us, and dwelling on it or trying to control it is futile and frustrating. It can also be a form of self-abuse, criticism, and negative judgment. You don’t deserve that. Stop.
3. The media and its scare tactics: The media often uses fear and sensationalism to grab our attention. We cannot control how the media presents information, but we can control how much we consume and the impact it has on us. Try reading a newspaper a few times a week and turning the rest off.
4. Panic-stricken and hysterical people, energy vampires, or mean people: We cannot control how others react or behave.
5. Events outside of your influence, home, family, or business: There are certain events and circumstances that are beyond our control. It is important to focus on what we can control within our own sphere of influence.
6. Politicians and community leaders: While we can vote and participate in the democratic process, we cannot control the actions or decisions of politicians and community leaders. We can only make informed choices based on our own values and beliefs.
7. The daily shifts, surprises, and changes inherent in life: Life is unpredictable, and there will always be unexpected challenges and changes. We cannot control these external circumstances, but we can control how we respond to them and how we navigate through them.
It is important to accept these aspects of life that we cannot control, as it allows us to focus on what we can control and make the most of our own thoughts, actions, and choices. By recognizing our limitations and directing our energy toward what is within our control, we can cultivate resilience and self-awareness.
What you can control:
What we can control refers to the actions, thoughts, and choices we make in our lives. It’s important to recognize that while there are many things beyond our control, there are still aspects within our power to influence. Here are some examples:
1. Your thoughts and actions: We have control over our thoughts and how we choose to respond to them. We can cultivate positive thinking patterns and choose actions that align with our values and goals.
2. Your responses to people and events: While we cannot control how others behave or the circumstances that arise, we have control over our reactions and responses. We can choose to respond with empathy, understanding, and assertiveness.
3. Your confidants: We have control over who we choose to confide in and share our personal or upsetting events with. It’s essential to surround ourselves with supportive and trustworthy individuals who can provide a safe space for us to express ourselves.
4. Your efforts and goals: We have control over the effort we put into achieving our goals and desired outcomes. By setting clear goals and taking consistent action, we can work towards achieving what we want in life.
5. Your attitude and perspective: We have control over our attitude and perspective towards life’s challenges. By choosing to see challenges as opportunities for growth and maintaining a positive outlook, we can navigate difficulties more effectively.
6. Your surroundings and boundaries: We have control over the people we surround ourselves with. It’s important to choose relationships that are healthy and supportive. Additionally, we can set boundaries to protect our mental and emotional well-being.
7. Your mental and physical diet: We have control over our mental diet, which includes what we watch, read, and think about. It’s crucial to be mindful of the information we consume and ensure it is nourishing and positive. Similarly, we have control over our physical diet, activity level, sleep hygiene, and intentional relaxation, which all contribute to our overall well-being.
8. Kindness and compassion: We have control over the kindness, care, love, generosity, and compassion we extend to ourselves and others. These qualities can positively impact our relationships and overall happiness.
By focusing on what we can control, we can empower ourselves to lead more fulfilling and resilient lives.
7 Tips to Help You Let Go of What You Can’t Control:
1. Acceptance: Recognize that life is inherently uncertain and that there are some things you cannot control. Embrace this reality and focus on accepting it rather than resisting it. There may be higher forces at work, and this change is necessary. Trust life.
2. Identify your sphere of influence: Differentiate between what is within your control and what is not. Direct your energy towards the things you can actually influence and let go of trying to control the rest.
3. Shift your focus: Instead of fixating on what you can’t control, redirect your attention and energy towards things that are within your control. This will help you feel more empowered and proactive.
4. Cultivate appreciation: Practice gratitude and focus on what you appreciate about yourself, others, and your life. Shifting your mindset towards appreciation can help you let go of the need to control everything and instead find contentment in the present moment.
5. Redefine perfectionism: Perfectionism is a trap for fools. Understand that perfectionism is an unrealistic and unattainable goal. Instead, strive for excellence and consistent effort. Recognize that making progress is more important than achieving perfection.
6. Curate your social connections. Seek support and connection with others who understand what you’re going through. Surround yourself with people who have experienced similar challenges and can provide guidance and perspective. Frenetic, chaotic, obsessive emotions can spread and make others feel unsteady and afraid. Move away from people who leave you feeling anxious, insecure, drained, or afraid.
7. Practice self-compassion: Be kind to yourself when things don’t go as expected. Treat yourself with compassion, understanding that we all suffer, make mistakes, endure challenges, and experience loss. You are not alone. Practice self-care and prioritize your well-being.
Mantra to Let Go of What You Can’t Control
Repeat the following mantra to yourself as a reminder to let go of what you can’t control:
“I release the need to control what is beyond my power. I embrace acceptance and trust in the flow of life. I focus on what I can control and cultivate gratitude in the present moment. I am kind to myself and prioritize my well-being. I let go and find peace.”
Implement these strategies into your life to develop a greater sense of acceptance and resilience in the face of uncontrollable circumstances. You can learn to let go of what you can’t control and focus on what truly matters – your own thoughts, actions, and choices.