In our lives, we spend so much energy wrestling for control. What do you really have control over? You don’t have control over the family you’re born into. You don’t have control over what other people do or say to you. You don’t have control over other peoples perception of messages you send.
As an educator, this is a difficult concept. I find myself wanting to maintain control of things I have no control over. Of course we can influence many of these things, particularly as we refine our delivery; but we really don’t have control. What do you have control over? Well, you may have guessed. You do have complete control over the way you respond to what happens to you.
This can feel limiting, but in another sense, it’s liberating. Imagine the stress you can avoid when you give up wasting energy on things you have no control over. If all you have to manage is your own reaction, not only will you act with more sobriety, but your stress level is immediately reduced. It’s a good way to stay present and in-the-moment.
You can build your tolerance for negative stimulus with practice and with being a quiet observer in the moment as you react. Building that awareness of your current patterns is key if you are to recognize your triggers and patterns of response, then you will begin to choose new ways to respond to similar stimulus in the future.
Although you don’t have control over what happens to you, you do have control over your reaction.