Focus your time and energy on the things that really matter
I saw this quote and loved it. It is so true. So many of us spend a lot of time and energy worrying about things that we can’t actually do anything about. In today’s highly pressured environments where we often hear each other saying phrases such as ‘I wish I had more time to get everything done’ or ‘I wish I had more energy to do all the things I need to do’, it seems crazy to think we then use our precious time and energy focussing on things we can do nothing about.
A concept that is often used in this context is known as the circle of control.
There are things that we have no control over, no matter how much we think, talk, worry, cry, get angry about them. Examples include, the weather, where we were born, what other people say or do, comments by others, the past.
What things can you think of in your life? Think of the things in the past week that you have become frustrated by or upset with? Can you really change them or do they belong in the ‘Circle of no control’? Are there things in the past that are holding you back that you can’t change?
Trust me it feels great to start putting some things safely in that circle and letting them go.
The things that we do have control over is ourselves. We can control our own thoughts, attitudes and subsequent behaviour. This is where we need to focus our precious commodity of time and energy.
I was working with a client recently, with regards to diet and exercise, and we were working through things that send her off track. One of the danger zones for her, is having a bad day at work when colleagues have said or done something that leave her feeling annoyed, or upset. This would usually then result in any plans for healthy eating, exercise etc going out the window and sitting on the sofa with a bar of chocolate. A scenario I think a lot of us can relate to. As we worked through this to find a healthy, sustainable way of coping with this, my client concluded that she no longer wanted to give them that power to not only affect her work life but also sabotage her home life. She decided to take control of her own actions and accept she can’t control what others do but she can control how she reacts and behaves as a result.
So, start taking control of your future now and stop giving the control to other people and to your past.
The serenity prayer expresses this brilliantly;
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