Many of you have heard me say it: I am a recovering perfectionist… and hand in hand with that….goes my very strong desire to be in control. On the plus side.. I get a lot of shit done. On the minus side… it can really keep me out of the flow when I need it most.
This is why I keep a reminder on my desk… it surfaces from time to time when I need to be reminded of it… The piece of paper simply says.. CONTROL is an ILLUSION. Ahh… Insto- Presto- where is my magic wand when I need it?
Those of us who like the illusion of control– You know who you are… no need for us to point… we depend on it like a crutch. Take away your sense of control and what you are left with is well… scary some days…
We like to think we are evolved enough to be in the flow of limitless possibilities and we are open to all things. To a point.
During the toughest of life's situations… we grab for a shred of control. But it slips through our fingers as we are reminded that we cannot control anyone or anything out there. Sure you may put every ounce of your energy in it for a while… but in the end… partners still go, people still die, loved ones get sick and may not get better, jobs disappear, accidents happen, family disappoints, people judge and shame us……. and then what? We are left trying to put the pieces of our shattered brokenness back together again….and make sense of it all- when there is no sense to be made at all-at least on a human level. We can easily get stuck on one or two notes we play over and over again. For those of you who are old enough to remember, that is the proverbial broken record. The more we play the notes, the deeper that groove gets.. until it is a canyon from which it seems impossible to dig out.
Life can be hard…or as Scott Peck, the author of The Road Less Traveled, so simply, yet profoundly began his bestseller: Life is difficult. Ok some days it just plain sucks, Scott. And no matter what you believe, EVERYONE has these days. You have not been singled out.
What is to be done? What do you do? Do we revert to our habits: the sugar, the overeating, the no- self care, the self hatred, the overwork, the smoking, the victimhood, the anger, the sleeping, the shopping, the numbing out of the day? You pick it.
Today I cleaned out piles… for all the wrong reasons. I see myself in my meta-view.. looking down… she is trying to get super-organized again.. Who knew that making binders… was a sign of such imbalance. But I caught it today… hmmm the old "trying-to-feel-like-I-am-in- control-of-something-for-which-I-have absolutely-no-control-by-trying-to-control-everything-else-in-my-life" trick. Classic.
As a child, I had hoped that life came in nice little boxes like I saw on TV… but I learned soon enough that it did not.. What "should be" often wasn't. I learned a lot of bad coping skills along the way… and have spent probably 40 years trying to unravel them… but they are always there… they are old friends… and when life is really hard it is so easy to go back there like an old bad neighborhood … and even though we all think ourselves more evolved than that and we may in fact be… these shadows and self- sabotages are here to remind us… we are human. We mess up.
When you are "doing your work"… or you are "on the light path".. there are still dark days.. and the way out is never control… never taking the helm in anger… but using instead your inner guidance system to steer yourself back into the flow. Yes, of course, sometimes being angry can get you really focused and give you back a sense of control… illusion, remember? It is only love that puts you back into the Flow and into the light.
What scares us about the dark is the unknown… But there can ultimately be no light if there is no darkness. To be in the flow is to be as my dear friend Angela, says.. in the friggin' unknown.. we know it is where we need to be.. it is the source of life and growth.. and yet we have been taught to fear this place… to lead instead of being led.. to control our destinies and shape our lives… when in fact.. life shapes us. How it shapes us has to do with where we sit. Are we from love.. and loving ourselves? That will make all the difference.
To be in the flow is to know, to trust & to have faith that all things are unfolding as they should. Hard for a self- professed control freak to feel the sands shifting under foot…But, if this is true-what does that leave for me "TO DO"? The only yin for that yang is "TO BE." My only choice is to be my own first beloved. To give to myself the utmost care and respect and love without expecting ONE DROP from anyone else. Then everything else is a joyful bonus. This is your job one. That is it… You can be president, make it on whatever the latest thing Oprah is doing, have your name in lights.. but to live until you love yourself… this gives you an A+ in life… which should make all our overachievers happy.
Control and Being in the Flow are entirely incompatible. One cancels out the other. Control is an Illusion. Love is not.
With my Love and Gratitude
and Going Quantum with You