A control freak? Me? No way! I never thought I would be described as a control freak. I never thought I’d describe myself as a control freak. I don’t feel controlling in that mean, I’m all powerful and you better do what I say type of way. However, I recently figured out that controlling doesn’t always present itself that way. Sometimes it presents itself as this anxiousness and need to control every single outcome in my life before the details even have a chance to play themselves out. I’ve learned that I’m really good at predicting the future; or at least I think I am. See here’s the thing I try to control everything, but only in my head. I will go through every possible scenario of what could happen, combine it with what has happened in the past and think I have some formula of what might happen in the present. Makes total sense, right? There’s just one problem and it’s a big one. I miss out on enjoying the present when all my energy is placed into what has happened and/or what will happen. I need to start appreciating what is happening right now.
There is a big reason why many people do this and it’s primarily based on fear. Fear is the reason we try to control how everything will play out before we give it a chance to actually play out. We are afraid of what will happen that we can’t even pause enough to realize that what we are afraid of is not actually happening at that moment. There are a couple of different ways that I attempt to conquer this issue and I hope you’ll find them helpful below.
Gratitude Journal: One of the Let’s Get Mentally Fit contributors, LD Juarez, and someone who I consider a friend, sent me a beautiful journal. When I received it, I immediately knew what I wanted to use it for; a gratitude journal. I think expressing gratitude is something that many take for granted, and therefore need to be intentional about expressing. Starting and ending my day with writing at least 5 things that happened that I’m grateful for does wonders for my mood and mindset.
Mindfulness: I work really hard at practicing mindfulness on a daily basis. If my mind wanders too far in the past or future, I ground myself my describing what is happening at that moment. It really does help to bring me back to the present.
Talk it Out: Sometimes I just have to call a friend or close relative or talk out my fears with my husband. Getting a different perspective helps to keep things in perspective. It also helps to calm my fears and reminds me to live in the moment.
Get Moving: Good old fashioned movement helps to drown out rumination about what has happened, will happen or might happen. If you can’t get to the gym, go outside for a walk. If it’s too cold to go out for a walk and you still can’t get to the gym, clean out a closet in your house or something. Whatever you do, don’t just sit there thinking about something you probably have no control (there’s that word) over.
Pray: As I’m doing the above or in between doing them, I pray. If everything seems out of my control, I try really hard to just pray about it. It helps to have faith when I feel like things are out of my control.