Learning to Take Control

How much control do you believe you have over what happens to you in life? Today, let’s talk about how our feelings, about who is in control, affect our end-results.

Some people believe they have very little control over what happens to them. When good things occur, they believe it’s mostly a matter of luck or circumstance. They don’t set goals or plan very far ahead because they think that how things turn out is beyond their control.

Their tension and stress levels are generally very high, as you might expect, and they often feel overwhelmed, helpless and hopeless. Strangely enough, when bad things happen, instead of blaming circumstances or luck, they tend to blame themselves.

Now, the bad news is that how much control we believe we have over our lives is generally a direct result of the way we were treated when we were very young. The good news is that this condition, which has been called “learned helplessness” doesn’t have to be permanent.

You can learn to take charge of your life and look at things differently. The fact is, when your attitude changes, the results you get change, too. Yes, that is a fact, not just opinion. The research is there to back it up: Your attitude is learned and the results you get depend as much – or more – on your attitude, as your skills and abilities.

If you’re interested in putting an end to feeling like a victim, pick up Martin Seligman’s book “Learned Optimism” as a start or get involved in a reputable personal growth program. If you have children, how about Seligman’s book “The Optimistic Child” to benefit them? What are you waiting for? There is no time like the present to begin to take control of your life.