Seeking To Be In Control Is A Weak Goal

Is being in control over-rated?  If control is required, is it your personal responsibility to impose order for others?

In my personal view, the answers are yes it is over-rated and it is usually not my responsibility to impose order. I usually don’t know enough about others to be able to impose control.

I came on this recently on Pinterest, and it sums up my view nicely.

relax no control

But that seems wrong, I hear.  Control is good.

Not true.  You never have control. Life is too complex. The illusion of control limits your life. 

You learn very little when nothing goes wrong.  New things are automatically beyond easy control.  You cannot grow and be fully in control at the same time.

Winning requires risk, personal commitment and the development of coping skills. Coping skills is what you wish to develop not control.

Consider this thought from enormously successful race car driver Mario Andretti.

“If you think you have everything under control, you are not going fast enough.”

Fear more often causes underachievement than does over-reaching.


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Don Shaughnessy is a retired partner in an international public accounting firm and is presently with The Protectors Group, a large personal insurance, employee benefits and investment agency in Peterborough Ontario. Contact:

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