Ever Have That Moment You Realize You are Being a Control Freak?

I had it the other day in yoga. Me, in tree, teeth gritted: I WILL NOT FALL. What? I thought I left that perfectionist bitch behind. Sigh.

I like to pretend I’m not trying to control outcomes all the time, but when I feel myself freaking out in yoga, I know something is up. My old tendencies of trying to control and go insane perfectionist always show me something.


Usually, what it shows me is I am totally attached, i.e. I am scared of failing.

What am I attached to, you ask? Everything. To other people answering my emails on my timeline so I don't fail at my business. To my dog NOT eating the random, moldy bread in the grass so I don't fail at being a good dog mom. To not falling out of tree pose so I don't fail at one thing I feel competent in.


You name it, I’m attached.  NEWSFLASH: Control is an illusion. Do you try to control work projects/kid schedules/daily life by creating to-do lists up the wazoo? Like, you literally have a book that is all to-do lists, and to-do lists for the to-do lists? Are you carrying every burden on the planet and then some? Take a deep breath. Put the list away. Try this instead. Step 1. Zoom in. Am I being a wee bit perfectionist? What can I release right now? Here’s a few prime ones: - I will screw that project up. - I am a screw up.

- I am a failure. - I’m not good at anything I do. - Other people will judge me. - I will judge me.  Step 2. Be super kind and gentle to yourself about the fact you have been trying to control things to begin with. Oh, you funny human, there you go again. Step 3. Take a deep breath and detach. Wanna be a real goalgetter? It requires mega detachment. - Detach from the idea that you are gonna get everything from that to-do list done. - Detach from the outcome of your work project. - Detach from thinking you know all the answers. - Detach from thinking you’ll get it right. (Why? Because you won't!) Step 4. Go with a lil’ dose of patience, and if you’re really feeling it, add in a big dash of faith. Remember that when things don’t go according to (your) plan, there is still a plan. If you go in with the attitude that there is something to learn, and a bigger plan to understand, you can shift into a higher place. Tune up and ask for some answers. What can you learn when your inner control freak shows up? What can you do to help her settle and see what there is to see?


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Copyright, All Rights Reserved, Nicole Tsong and Maple Path, 2019

Photos: Chris Danielle; Erika Schultz, Logo: Live Big Co.