It’s amazing how quickly things can sometimes spiral out of control. You say you’re just going to do one more thing and six more pop up that really need to be done that day. Or you mis-speak about something or someone mis-hears you and someone feels offended and it gets blown completely out of proportion. Or one person struggles with slick roads and it turns into a 5 car pile up. Or the weather is completely unseasonal and your family reunion plans are ruined. Or you use one wrong ingredient and the whole dish is ruined. Some of these things we have an easier time avoiding or fixing or dealing with, but for many of them we have to give recovery our best effort.
The thing about control is that you can try and be in control, and you can in fact be in control, but if someone else gets out of control you can’t do much about that except try to react or respond in the best way. In the example of communication I used earlier, it’s so easy to get caught up in a conversation and think you hear something and react instead of pausing and thinking about if you really heard what you heard and asking for clarification before forming an opinion or reacting negatively. So when it comes down to it, the better control you have, the easier it will be to stop a situation before it does spiral out of control.
It’s not about trying to be in control all of the time, if you try for that you’ll end up crazy and live such a regimented life that you miss out on a lot of adventures that the world has to offer, not to mention you won’t meet some of the cool people out there if you only focus on controlling yourself. So the question is, how good is your control? Can you stop yourself from watching another TV episode if you know you really should to do something else? Are you able to get focused on something when you really need to? Are you able to say both no and yes depending on which a situation calls for? Are you able to let go of that control and be free and fun as the occasion calls for? Is control a tool you use or is it controlling you?