Do you focus on what you can control?
We all do it. Without even noticing it most of the time. We find ourselves aggravated, annoyed or frustrated. Then, after some time, we come to the conclusion that we spent a lot of time focusing on something over which we had no control.
You may say, “well Carole in accounting is annoying”, “my sister can’t stop talking about her kids, even though I asked her not to right now”, or, “I wish I could have started trying to build a family sooner”. These things may all be true. And they all may be upsetting. And you may have a lot of feelings about these upsets.
You are entitled to have your feelings, but you are also entitled to have your life back. If you get stuck in the deep, dark well of despair over these things, what will happen? You can get more frustrated or even depressed and it could affect your sleep, self-care and relationships. If it continues, you will hear yourself talking about it over and over with your friends or partner. Before you know it, you are not only upset, but feeling powerless as well.
Focusing on the things we can control is easier said than done. But just like many things, practicing does make it better. You can start with the most obvious. Find as many ways as possible to not see Carole, when your sister talks about her kids change the subject, or better yet, start every conversation with a topic you were “dying” to discuss. Then, every time thoughts of regret for not trying to start your family sooner pop into your head, make a pledge to focus on one small thing that you are doing to help yourself. Or do one small thing to improve your health, like getting rid of plastic containers.
Listen for the quieter frustrations that bubble under the surface. Sometimes we don’t notice that we focus on things we can’t change until we hear ourselves vent about them for the tenth time. What if we listened more, and tried to identify those moments when we are upset that we pressed send on that email we didn’t finish, or ate chips and salsa at dinner instead of a salad? We have all done it. The question is, can we identify the feelings, but then move on to something we can control?
Quite a challenge…and a good challenge to take on if you want a project that you have some control over.
Speaking of control, education is a great way to take more control, and we have lots of ways you can educate yourself on our site. Feel free to check it out http://familybuilding.net/products/.
And, as always, we are here for you.