The Illusion of Control pt.2

In the last post I told you about where trying to regain ALL control led me.

Now, after a long talk with my partner and a lot of thinking, I start to realize the duality in what I’ve been trying to do.

I have been trying to accept that I have made a mistake- hurricane sized mistake- and I am living in the twisted aftermath of trying to fix it and constantly failing. I keep living with that sense that all in my life is consequential of what I do. That the rape wouldn’t have happened if I’d done things differently. That I could have made more money if I just pushed myself a bit more. That I could finish my BA degree in a very small city and at the same time get enough money to pay off my debts. I’ve accepted that I did everything wrong and for 2 years I wrecked my brain trying to fix it.

The truth is, we don’t have full control over everything.

You can’t stop airplane crash, or predict that it will happen. Even if you do everything right, even if you go to self defense classes, never walk alone in the dark and all that, you can’t always prevent an attack. There will always be someone stronger. And even if you are fully certain in a job and take out loans, the economy can crash, you can get fired, and your security is done.

That seemed like a depressing thought.

I thought, that is awful, scary. That means, it makes no difference what you do. Bad things can still happen. It doesn’t matter if you are bigger, stronger, smarter, have more money. Your life can fall apart in a minute.

And it can. But that got me thinking.

While I was trying to have control over everything, I was concentrating on the wrong thing.

For work, I was concentrating on the idea that I have to make certain amount of money. Sure it’s online business, it’s different than a regular job, but it doesn’t matter, I told myself. I have debt, I have to make a living, I have to make that amount if it kills me. I didn’t make the amount by the needed time. Also, by concentrating on this I blocked my creativity, which is a main part of it. And I told myself that was my fault again. And if I pushed myself enough…

But see, realizing I don’t have all the control, or even a lot of control, it’s freeing.

It makes me see that I don’t have control over weather enough people will buy from my store.

What I do have control over, is what I create, what I put out there, how I promote my work. After that I have to let things happen. That is the best I can do.

I can not prevent all bad things that may happen in my life, I may only choose how to react to them.

May be I can’t even control all the mood swings I get, the panic attacks(thankfully now as I am better those are a lot more rare), the breakdowns on the way to being fully recovered. What I can choose is how long I feel bad for having fallen apart. I can choose what I do after. I can choose not to stuff myself with junk food, just because I’m in bad mood again.

I can’t control the universe. But letting go of the idea that I can, I can certainly do better than before. Because for a first time in a while, I have the feeling that I have control over what I do. I get to choose- the small, daily things- and those small things will eventually make a bigger thing, and hopefully one day my life will be better.

It’s freeing, hopeful feeling.

We stop ourselves from doing certain things because we believe we are powerless. But sometimes we stop ourselves because we think that we can do more than we really can, and when we fail, we make ourselves smaller. We think that we have even less control on what we do than on those big things. That our actions don’t always have result.

And may be only by letting go of that notion that we can control everything, we can really have control over the things that can be out choice- how we work, how we love, what we eat, how we interact with others….

 

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