Thursday, March 13, 2008

Friday's Post - Gaining Control Over What We Can

Gaining Control Over What We Can. This post is about control. What we can control.

As an aside, have you ever wondered was the show "Get Smart" a parody on 12 steps and therapy? Get it, "Chaos" and "Control?" The bad guys called their group "Chaos" and the good guys were "Control?"

Am I the only one?

This "control" subject is a notorious one, because we have been told we are "control freaks" and have "controlling behaviors."

I first want to say this about those two quotes above.

First off, don't accept the critique that your "controlling behaviors" make you the evil one. You are not. You only tried to control a situation because it was chaotic and crazy. It was pure pandemonium. It still might be chaos and crazy right now in. However, don't beat yourself up about your trying to fix things by being controlling. Your reaction of using controlling behaviors when things that were out of control are normal. However . . .

You did not know that the control you tried to exert was only reinforcing the chaos.

What we have learned through Al-Anon and therapy, is that letting go and not engaging the crazy person in our lives and not trying to control, may be the only way you can gain sanity and actually restore peace. The power of addiction is strong. And we have found that whatever force and influence you could muster only feeds the alcoholism's power and ability to cause more chaos.

In fact, you become frustrated and then you engage and may lash out - due to the frustration.

As Murphy's Law says, "When you argue with a crazy person, people might not know who is the crazy person." In this case, the alcoholic is the crazy person. You cannot argue with a crazy person - especially when they are under the influence.

This is straight from Al-Anon and other studies. You have to do the opposite of your natural inclination. Just like swimming; "You have to swim with the current to get out of the rip tide." Remember that one? Or when in a car in icey conditions; "You turn into the skid to gain control of the vehicle."

My Message this Morning:
My message to you is, first, don't beat yourself up by allowing past labels to cause you to think you are not a good person. These past labels put a regulator on who you are as a good and healthy person. Do we make mistakes? You bet. Are you your mistakes? No.

Second, and this is the more important of the two, realize that you control nothing outside yourself. And realize it is only human nature and that we all react negatively to anyone attempting to control who we are and what we do. You do it and I do it.

Realize that the only control you really have is just over yourself. Period. And it starts with your thinking and ends with your actions. If you understand this, then you have gained the power of control as it could be used in its highest form. And in its best form.

When you gain control over yourself, and your thinking, you have gained an incedible amount of power - and you are in alignement with your higher power. When you do this, you will find yourself on the path to freedom. You will no longer be subject to the whims and opinions of others.


PS - I need a volunteer. If you want to host the On-Line Al-Anon Meeting - please don't be shy! Just let me know in the comments below.

Last - the votes are in. People voted for long and short posts. If you would like to enter a survey question, please submit a question and I will poll the readers.


Syd said...

I'm grateful to know that I can't control anyone today. Control is pure ego. It means that I know what's best for everyone else. Glad that I realize what an impossible task that is. And that I'm not God.

Laurie said...

Your Murphy's Law analogy struck me. I don't know how many times I have turned into a screaming lunatic while fighting with my drunk husband. Then I have this out of body experience and look at myself and think who is that crazy woman? I beat myself up for it for days because I don't behave that way under normal conditions (of course these aren't normal conditions). What really gets my goat is he doesn't remember any of it and I've got this image of myself as a woman gone mad. This is when it's important to realize I can only control myself and obviously I needed to get a grip!

Maresie said...

I try to practice picking up the 4lb weight rather than the 300 lb weight first off. I practice with my roommates who are irrational, hyper reactive and judgemental. I practice and practice and practice. I have regularly lost it, allowed other people to ruin my day and more. I am not willing to give my power away anymore.