When I hold a death grip on everything in my life, and things do not go may way, I find myself stuck in fear and I try to control everything even more. But I know that I actually have very little and often no control over people, things and places around me. I only have control over me and how we deal with the given situations.
Over the last several years in my sobriety, I have noticed that things go much more smoothly when I give up control and when I allow them to happen instead of trying to desperately make them happen. Unfortunately, I often struggle with this, because although I am much better than I used to be, I am still a bit of a control freak. I often waste lots of good energy trying to plan, predict, and prevent things that I cannot possibly plan, predict, or prevent, but somewhere in side of me, I am convinced that I can!
I try to control things for many reasons, but mostly because I get a sense of security. I also:
- Want to control things because I fear what I think might happen if I don’t.
- Like to control because I am attached to the favorable outcome, my way.
- Feel that I am successful and get things done.
Of course control is wonderful if everything turns out the way I want it too! Unfortunately that doesn’t happen often and I am left disappointed and resentful.
However, the energy of letting go accomplishes much more than the energy of control.
When I am stuck and have a hard time letting go, I turn to my trusty old tool, the GOD box. Of course do not be frightened by its name, in case you’re like me — not religious, you can call it whatever you wish and it does no even have to be a box. The point is to be able to do something physical as you are turning it over, or letting it go, or accepting it.
I have a God box that I received for my three year soberversary, from a dear friend. Inside of it is a little poem:
When your head starts to worry,
And your mind just can’t rest,
Put your thoughts down on paper,
And let God do the rest.
Whatever I am struggling with, resentment or a fear, or a difficult situation, I write it on a piece of paper and I put it in the box to give it to God, or the powers that maybe – whatever makes you comfortable. Then I am not to think of that struggle again. When I feel like I have let it go, I can throw the paper away!
I love this tool, because I have a hard time doing things that do not include doing something physical, I can’t seem to do it just in my head or heart! But this works wonders! My box is empty right now, but I am getting ready to fill it up!
Letting go leads to freedom. When we learn to let go, we can be free of the sources of our pain and suffering that are holding us back.