Saturday, February 5, 2011

The Problem of Control

Control has always been a big issue for me. When I was a small child, I was very bold, popular and friendly. This often led to taking control of the situation, sometimes at the expense of others. When I was around twelve, I learned that I was indeed quite controlling and that others often resented it. Since that time, my desire has been to control myself and let others come to their own conclustions. Still, even with years of practice, there are times when I falter in big ways. The thing is, control is a huge problem. Seeking to control others not only blocks some of their energy, but it also blocks your own.

I recently encountered a situation with a person I consider a really good friend. He pointed out to me there were times he felt I was subtly trying to teach him a lesson, and he resented it as he really didn't see me as a teacher or mentor. As I thought about it, I realized he was right. I value him so much I want him to have the benefit of alternative perspectives. The thing is, his life is not about me anymore than my life is about him. He is learning the things he needs to learn in this lifetime, and these lessons are in no way dependent on me or my help. I decided that I did need to give him his space to learn what he came here to learn, so I let go of that friendship for a while. There was too much tension between us (which should have been an obvious sign to me in the first place). I am not hurt or angry or upset in any way, and I wish him well on his journey.

The interesting part for me has been the result of this action. As I let go of my control, I feel the release of energy and emotions--one of those breathing a sigh of relief sort of moments. As I let go of the tension, better emotions fill me. I've also discovered I have been attracting some really amazing, uplifting friends who are refilling this void. Giving up trying to control this friend has been incredibly transforming for me.

It is said that everyone who comes into your life is a teacher. Lesson learned. Thank you, my friend.

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