How to Stop Trying to Control Everything Around You

How to Stop Trying to Control Everything Around You

Have you ever asked yourself, ‘why do I feel the need to control everything?’ If yes, then you might know the consequences of trying to control everything. When you try to control everything, you struggle to be in a relaxed frame of mind. It urges you to keep changing things the way they are, destroying your inner peace. Because regardless of your efforts, you can’t control everything. We must stop trying to control everything and let go.

In this article, we’ll see how to stop trying to be in control of everything.

What does it mean to control everything?

Let’s have a look at what it means to control everything.

Most of us have a habit of controlling everything around us, which is not wrong to some extent. Because we all are responsible for making things in our life pleasant, and for that, we need to manage many things.

But what’s wrong is getting sad or anxious about anything against our will. If you’re controlling your bad habits or daily happenings in your life, it’s ok. But if you start fighting destiny or fate, you’re wrong. Because life never goes as planned, and to keep going when the going gets tough, you need to learn to embrace change and let go of the past.

We all face changes in our lives, and it’s a part of life. To stop trying to control everything in your life; just go with the flow. We all have heard that change is uncomfortable but necessary for growth. And you have to adjust anyway.

We try to make things perfect, which triggers us to control everything. But we need to understand that things don’t go our way all the time. It’s better to stop trying to control everything and just let go easily.

Why should you stop trying to control everything?

We must stop trying to control everything because it only emotionally drains us. You can do nothing to change something that’s destined. There are matters in our life that don’t align with our wishes.

Have you ever faced a failure that you tried to avoid by doing everything possible? We must go through certain things in our lives, no matter what we do to prevent them. These failures and losses that we face have lessons for us. Stop trying to control everything and learn the lessons these failures have. You must stop trying to control everything because it’s the only way to avoid attachments from the past and tolerate what’s happening without mentally exhausting yourself. 

When you try to control everything, you may end up controlling nothing

There’s a principle called, ‘Management by exception.’ By this principle, there’s a statement, “An effort to control everything may end up by controlling nothing.” In simple words, only those deviations (discrepancies in performance) will be brought forward in front of top controlling managers that are considerably high and cannot be solved by the lower management. The problems that can be solved by low-level management will not be put forward in front of upper management. This is because the upper management will not be able to control everything; if they do, they may end up controlling nothing.

In the same way, if we start controlling everything in our lives, we might end up controlling nothing. So, stop trying to control everything and eliminate the ‘need to control everything disorder.’

How to stop trying to be in control of everything

Here’s how you can stop trying to control everything;

1. Focus on how you react

Stop trying to control everything except how you react. That’s what you need to be controlling how to respond when things fall apart. In life, there are things that you can’t control. But you can control how you acknowledge these mishaps. Either let these circumstances control you and leave you exhausted or accept these situations and protect your calm.

You always have the option to stop yourself from being the victim of circumstances. If you tried everything to control these and failed, you’ll fall victim to your circumstances and feel vulnerable.

Have a positive outlook on whatever you’re going through, and keep your focus on how you’re reacting to what you’re going through. Your reaction shouldn’t be against yourself. So, whatever you do, remember that it doesn’t affect you or your health.

2. Be realistic

It’s good to be hopeful, but not all the time. Because sometimes, holding on to hope hurts when nothing seems to work in our favor. In these times, being hopeful means trying on our part. But when you keep failing, it leads to disappointment. So, give things time and don’t rush through life.

Come out of daydreaming, and adopt a realistic approach. Think about everything you can do to make things easy for yourself. Instead of controlling and failing, try accepting and changing.

3. Embrace the art of surrender

We have always been taught to fight with our circumstances, but there are times when we have no option but to accept what’s happening. And accepting your situation and practicing patience doesn’t make you weak. As humans, we don’t have the authority to go against our fate. Whether you accept it or not, there are events in our lives that prove that regardless of how much we try, we just can’t avoid a few things. This makes us realize that we need to stop controlling everything and embrace the art of surrender.

4. Just let go

Learn to release what you can’t control because to stop trying to control everything around you, you need to go with the flow. If there’s something you’re trying to achieve in life, and you’ve put in everything to make it happen, and still it doesn’t happen, then it’s time to let go of it. You can’t force life to act according to your desire. So, stop trying to control everything and just let go of what doesn’t serve you.

5. Manage your emotional triggers

Managing your emotional triggers can help determine what causes you to control everything. It could be past trauma, fear, anxiety, childhood abuse, or a personality disorder. Past experiences can cause us to develop controlling behaviors. It could be that you dealt with too much uncertainty in life that now you want to control everything.

Knowing what your fears are can help you stop trying to control everything. Maybe you’ve grown up in a dysfunctional family, and you fear conflicts. And you try to control things whenever you see a start of conflict or misbehavior among family members.

In the same way, to stop trying to control everything, look at what triggers you to adopt controlling behaviors.

6. Ask for help from loved ones

When you see yourself getting into controlling behavior, and you can’t help yourself, ask for help from loved ones. People close to you can identify the root cause of such behavior. When you fear that something wrong will happen, that’s when you can’t let go of control. But talking with a friend or family member about your fears can help you fight your fears. Sometimes when we let our thoughts out, we feel relieved, allowing us to overcome fear and anxiety. So, eventually, it helps you stop trying to control everything.

7. Take care of your well-being

In every situation, you need to take care of yourself first. Remember that your well-being should be your priority. I’m not saying you should become selfish, but stay strong and don’t let anything affect your mental and physical health.

If you are worrying a lot, take a breath and realize that nothing is permanent. Neither the good times nor the bad stay forever! Worrying will only affect your mental health. Just leave the things you can’t control, and stop trying to control everything.

8. Live in the present moment

Start living in the present moment and forget everything that you fear. Why stress over something that hasn’t happened yet? And even if it happened, what will happen? Think of it as if that particular thing happened that you’re afraid of; will it affect your life?

If you really think that if that you fear happened, seek help from an expert or a professional or whatever you think you can do. But stop trying to control everything on your own.

Don’t let the anxiety of the future ruin your today. Live each day positively, and don’t worry about what tomorrow might bring.

The Positive Healer

9.  Trust everything is in order

Whatever you’re going through in life, believe that everything is in order. Just imagine that the things you’re worried about are already in your favor. How would you feel if you got to know that the things you dislike are actually good for you? Good, right?

Believe that even if you stop trying to control everything, if something wrong happens (according to you), it will be good for you, only if you know. I love this verse from the Holy Quran; it helps me believe that whatever is happening is good for me. It keeps me going in the bad times knowing that this is the best for me in the meantime.

“But perhaps you hate a thing, and it’s good for you, and perhaps you love a thing, and it’s bad for you.”

Al-Quran (2:216)

How do you stop controlling behavior?

People with personality disorders or extreme anxiety cannot stop trying to control everything around them. It could be due to the fear that other people might spoil things if they don’t do it. It causes them to stress and find difficulty trusting others.

Now let’s see how you stop controlling behaviors;

  • Stop thinking about when a particular thing will happen. We often give ourselves timelines to do things, but it won’t work when it comes to events in your life. Stop trying to control everything by thinking about when or how something happens in your life. Because what’s meant for you will find its way.
  • Start trusting people again, don’t think of everyone as untrustworthy. Just because you can’t trust people doesn’t mean people aren’t reliable. If you need help, you can trust your close friends and family.
  • If there’s a change in your life, then instead of avoiding it, accept it. I know people with controlling behaviors find it difficult to embrace change in their life, but adjusting to changes in life can help you stop trying to control everything.
  • Stop ruling over others. When you don’t trust people, you start dominating others. To stop trying to control everything, take it easy. Just because you don’t feel good right now doesn’t mean you have the right to oppress others.
  • To stop controlling behavior, know there is always more than one way to do something. If you think you are right, know that others can be right too.
  • Be patient when things don’t go your way. We find it challenging to stop trying to control everything when we hope everything will go as we wish. If things don’t go as planned, practice patience instead of adopting controlling behavior.

The Final Word

In life, there are moments when everything goes against you. Sometimes we don’t understand what’s happening and try to control everything. In such times, try to relax and don’t panic. Maintain your inner peace and let go of things you can’t control. Manage your emotional triggers to avoid declining your mental health. Because when your mental health gets affected, everything in your life starts to get disturbed. If you’re frustrated, you can get in touch with your trustworthy friends or family members. Remember that sometimes calamities come into our life as a blessing as they teach us valuable lessons. Stop trying to control everything and go with the flow.

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