When was the last time you heard a story about someone getting amazing, unexpected results while over-controlling a situation? Chances are good that anytime you’ve experienced extraordinary results, control has taken a backseat in the situation.
- To reduce or prevent the spread of
- To hold in restraint
- To verify or regulate
“To regulate” or make regular
By definition, control, or making things regular, makes “amazing” impossible.
There’s no room for excellence when you’ve choked out uncontrollable possibilities. When we control the latest endeavor in our lives, we constrict our own potential. But
controlling constricting situations to reduce the chance for failure also constricts our chances for unexpected results.
When you’re not controlling the situation, life is able to sneak in.
Our fear of looking bad keeps us from being amazing. So we settle for becoming “the best, worst me I can be.” Afraid of taking chances that could catapult us into that upper bracket of our best selves, we stay in the lower quadrant where we feel safe, most of the time at our own demise. Sometimes we dumb ourselves down to avoid showing up someone else, rescuing them and enabling them – and us – to be ok being mediocre.
The scariest part is that most of the time, we do this without thinking about it.
We do it out of fear.
We convince ourselves that our fear protects us, but in actuality, it is the very thing that perpetually harms us. We are so busy worrying about government control, we’ve forgotten that we have the power to break through the greatest stronghold on our society. We need to stop feeding our own self-destruction. We need to stop buying into fear as a protector; and see it for what it is. Our greatest source of destruction.
Fear destroys confidence in ourselves, our support of others, and our connectedness with the world.
In today’s society of blame and shame, we have allowed our fear to reduce ourselves to the best of our worst self. Dumbing-down our own potential so that we fit in and, well, be regular.
What most of us have neglected to realize is that when we over-plan, or control situations, we constrict the chances for unexpected failure … and unexpected success.
For most of my adult life, I have been what I like to call a “planner.” Friends and family may have their own description for my need to make sure things don’t go wrong. But that’s another blog post. So keep your eyes peeled for topics like, “I’m not neurotic, I just think a lot.”
I’ve noticed that when I am not fixated on a specific result, great things happen … effortlessly. I have also noticed that when I am fixated on a specific result, great things *never* happen. I knew control had something to do with it, but only after watching Brene Brown’s Tec Talk did I put all of the millions of pieces together from the past 40+ years of my life. In 8 minutes, she articulated her years of research, her control that led her to learn (and teach) that the true value is in our vulnerability and willingness to be imperfect.
I have always valued vulnerability – moreso than others at times. But we’ve all learned that vulnerability can hurt at times, and we’ve learned to “toughen up.” Well, yay us. We’re tough. We did it! We have toughened ourselves into a society of disconnected human spirits who are so afraid of being wrong, we are afraid of being real with each other.
My plan is killing me.
My plan that was created to protect me from undesirable harm has separated me from life. Ultimately causing more harm than in-the-moment rejection or pain.
My plan needs to go.