Control Freak

Welcome to The Dish where Drew DeMaree & guests serve up a healthy dose of reality each month.  This blog is about keeping it real ~ real challenges, real distractions, real life getting in the way of, well…virtually everything.  How we view our realities depends on individual mindset, and we want to discuss WHY MINDSET MATTERS.

We always keep it real in this blog, so here is an absolute truth – I HAVE BEEN EXTREMELY FRUSTRATED – After a lot of self-examination and reflection, guess what I realized, brace for it…

I AM NOT IN CONTROL – of really anything lately – not what goes on in my family, community and certainly the world.  On the surface, I seem fine, but within me, emotions are constantly brewing.  My wife, Kim, likens me to a volcano than can erupt at any time without warning.

Lack of control seems to be common theme with my coaching clients who experience frustration.  For me, this has been a lifelong struggle.  When I was a child, I would literally pray for patience.  I have worked very hard to find it, yet it is elusive. The reality is that I have OCD; I am a control freak, and guess what – I am still impatient at times.

Why do we seek control?  For me there are two outcomes I find favorable when I am in control:

  1. Things get done when and how I like them, the outcome is not disappointing
  2. My ego is satisfied because in my perfectionist mind, it has been done the best way possible.

Has it really? Because when we control situations, these are the realities:

  • OUTCOMES are limited
  • CREATIVITY is stifled
  • RESULTS are minimized

Being a leader does not mean you HAVE to be in control of very situation; quite to the contrary, placing trust in your inner circle to use the skills they possess, might just reveal that your way was not the ceiling of achievement, but actually the floor.  That’s right, I said it!  We should shift our focus from control to growth and watch our environment and opportunities EXPAND. Coordination of creative thought and idea sharing results in unimaginable outcomes

I have come up with 3 actionable ways to loosen the reins of control, and I would like you to try them:

  1. Ask yourself – Is this worth controlling, and if so, will controlling it potentially limit the outcome?
  2. Sleep on it – give yourself time to calm down and think about it rationally; do you still feel the same?
  3. Check your ego – why is control so important? Do I crave the spotlight?

How many times have you had “the best idea EVER”, I mean right up there with sliced bread and paper clips? You are so confident of its success that you are practicing your repertoire with the darlings of the talk show circuit…THEN you share it with a spouse, co-worker or even a child, who suggests an addition or tweak that truly takes your idea to THE NEXT LEVEL!

I strive to live in a space surrounded by people who collaborate, contributing to my ideas, expanding my thoughts and helping me solve problems I didn’t even realize existed.  In this world, anything is possible…if we just LET GO.  Keep your eyes wide open, be receptive to feedback, and watch creativity soar. When you try to control everything, you enjoy nothing.  Opening your mind to other ideas and perspectives shifts your focus, facilitates growth and reveals that MINDSET MATTERS.