This question can be taken in many different ways. If you are anything like me, your first knee-jerk response to this is, “Nothing!” Of course, this is never true. We can look at this from a standpoint of authority as in “Who rules over me?” However, that’s not what I want to focus on here. We can also look at this from the standpoint of “What guides me?”, as in a moral code for example. This, also, is not what I want to discuss.
Instead, I want to focus on this question from the standpoint of, “What controls me?” Often times, the things that control us are hard to identify. They become blind spots to us. This can be damaging because often, what has control over us can change our behavior and keep us from being who we want to be. This is especially true when someone else tries to break the control on our behalf.
One of my wife’s favorite TV shows to watch is My 600-Lb. Life on TLC. When viewing a problem from the outside, seeing what the problem is and how it controls another person can seem obvious. The solution to remove the control can seem obvious as well. What we don’t always realize is how difficult it can be to remove the control that something has over us. In My 600-Lb. Life for example, food is only the vice that controls them, but it is often caused by a much deeper-rooted issue. Until the core issue is dealt with, real change is almost impossible.
Instead of focusing on what controls others, we should take a deep hard look at ourselves. It’s important because we could also have hidden, deep-rooted issues as well. Does anger rule you? Does watching TV? Does exercise rule your day? How about what others think of you? Does what you wear or how you look control you? What about your need for empathy or love? How about your fears? Or what of your feelings?
The areas that can control our lives seem almost endless. And when we realize how much control different things have over our lives, change can sometimes seem hopeless. But change is not hopeless when we are willing to accept help. Of course, sometimes we realize what controls us, but we don’t care enough to do anything about it. We chalk it up to being “Not a big deal.” And sometimes, that’s true. But, we will never know until we start asking this question and then asking, “What kind of impact is this having on me or those around me?”