While we may not want to admit it, there are so many things that we cannot control in this world. For instance, we cannot control the weather, the passage of time, and the ways in which people respond to us. If we take a long look at our lives, we are likely to see that the things that we can control are completely outnumbered by the things that we cannot control.
Stress is a normal way in which we respond to certain circumstances that seem to constrain us, and stress can lead to the development of many dangerous diseases. Keep in mind that the circumstances that seem to constrain us and lead to stress are usually the circumstances that we cannot control, such as a difficult colleague at work who is our employer's favorite or being dissatisfied by our health insurance although it is the best one that we can afford at the moment.
We must do our best to minimize the stress in our lives by letting go of the things that we cannot control. For those things are likely to lead to stress, which can impact our health. Here are some ways in which we can learn to let go.
1. Identify the things that cause you stress and make a list. It really does not matter how long your list is as you are the only person who is going to be reading that list. Among the things on your list, highlight all the things that you cannot control.
2. The things that you can control, which include all the items of your list that you did not highlight, can be systematically dealt with. Make a new list for these things along with a plan of action on how you are going to control each one. Gradually working on this list will help you to build up your confidence.
3. Cut each one of the items that you can control from your first list.
4. Go through this list of things that you cannot control and double-check it to make sure that you have not missed anything.
5. Add in anything that you have missed or move any items to the other list of things that you can control, if necessary.
6. Now, read the first item in the list of things that you cannot control to yourself and remind yourself that you cannot control it. Then figure out why you cannot control it. For example, if you are unhappy about how a relationship ended, you cannot control how that relationship ended because it involved you and another person. The only person you can control is yourself. You cannot control the actions of the other person who most likely contributed to why you are feeling unhappy about the end of that relationship. Once you figure out these reasons, write them down next to the items on your list. Rule of thumb: You may need a spreadsheet.
7. The next time one of the things that cause you stress pops into your head like a surprise visit from your high school archrival, remind yourself why you cannot control that thing.
8. Focus on what you are doing to control the things that you can control.
9. Remind yourself that you are awesome because you are learning to let go, which is not an easy thing to do!
Letting go of all those pesky things that you cannot control is how you can reduce the stress in your life and protect your health. Keep in mind that when you start the process of “letting go like a boss”, you should not expect instant results. Like any excellent result, someone has to go through all the right steps before that result can be enjoyed. In this case, that someone is you. Keep working on it, and those things that you cannot control will gradually stop monopolizing your thoughts and behavior. For you will learn to let them go.