There are some things in our lives that we have complete control over like the brand of toothpaste we prefer to use and which outfit to wear to school or to the office on any given day. In fact, we control many facets of our lives; from the type of gas we put in our cars to the friends we choose to accept on Facebook. While we maintain control over many aspects of our lives, there are some things that we cannot control.
One of the most critical skills a person can acquire is the skill of acceptance. Believe it or not, acceptance is one of the most difficult choices many feel they must make. In fact, that is the first step towards overcoming any obstacle. Accepting the fact that there are some things in your life that you cannot control will allow you to live a more stress-free life. Many of us are programmed to believe that we have complete control over our circumstances. We are so confident we are in control that our egos will not allow us to recognize our countless failed attempts at “creating” an answer.
Understand that there are some events that will take place in your life that will force you to choose between sinking and swimming. If you are on this side of the dirt, there is still hope that you can swim. Everything that happens to us happens for a reason. Now the reason, in many cases, may not be prevalent at first. It may take some time before you understand and are able to fully answer the “why” in your situation. There may be some things that you may never know the reason for; accept it. I urge you to practice the skill of acceptance. Understand and embrace that some things are out of your control. Stop trying to play God.
God, grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change; the courage to change the things we can; and the wisdom to know the difference.
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No matter how hard you try, it is difficult to force anyone to do something they don’t want to do. Moreover, it is even more difficult to get someone to see something they don’t want to see. It matters not your intentions, good or bad, if someone is not ready to receive something they simply will not. Trying to force your point of view is like a quarterback throwing to a receiver that is either not open, heavily covered or simply ran the wrong route. In either case, they won’t be able to receive or catch it no matter how accurate your throw or message is.
Most of us want nothing but the best for our friends, family and loved ones but they have to want the same thing for themselves. Conversely, you must be willing to trust the eyes of others. What I mean is simply that your eyes point outwardly and you are able to observe things that others may not be able to see or may simply have a different perspective on. Similarly, you must be opened to accepting constructive criticism and be willing to embrace opportunities of improvement.
The impasse occurs when one does not accept responsibility for their actions and are not willing to change based on the observation of others. Don’t join that group and if you already are a card carrying member, cancel your membership. You are going nowhere fast. I am more fortunate than most to have learned a long time ago to not take anything personally, especially constructive criticism. If someone offers you advice, receive it, accept it and thank them. Thank them because they think enough of you to offer opportunities where you can be better. Most people don’t have folks like that in their lives who care enough to offer them opportunities for improvement. Embrace it.
A major sign of maturity is being able to accept constructive criticism and not be offended when it is offered. Don’t take it personally.
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Sometimes we have to know when to let go. Not in the sense of a failed relationship or a project gone wrong but in the sense of knowing that we have done all we can. Sometimes we try our hardest and put forth maximum effort in order to yield a particular set of results to no avail never once realizing the key ingredient to the recipe is letting go of the control we think we have over certain situations. The key ingredient is simply letting the chips fall where they may.
When we let go of our need to control every aspect of our lives, we open the door to God’s plan. There are some things that you cannot control the outcome to no matter how hard you try. Maintain the understanding that the future is not ours to see. Simply live your life and more importantly live in the present. Oftentimes we focus on a tomorrow we know nothing about neglecting the effort that should be put on the present. Do not be misled, I am not saying to not think about or focus on the future, I am simply saying to not dwell on what you think lies ahead because you do not have control over that.
In the 1950’s a popular song sung by Doris Day helped to present a new paradigm on the way one should view life. “Que Sera, Sera” which translates to whatever will be, will be. You must be willing to adapt to change as quickly as the change occurs while maintaining the understanding that there are no accidents. Everything happens as it is designed to happen. From the people who enter and exit your life to the trials and tribulations we face; it is all for a reason and by design. Let go of the need to control some of the outcomes in your life and start embracing the fact that whatever will be, will certainly be.
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