Extreme Control vs No Control

In this fast-paced world, we are expected and demanded to excel in so many things in our lives, when life itself has been challenging. As the complexity of modern life rises, we tend to get terrified of everything. We are buried under an enormous amount of fear. All these overwhelming feelings can lead to anxiety that makes us feel anxious and worried all the time.

In addition, fear also stimulates our want to feel in control. Most people experience fear or anxiety when they analyze all the uncontrollable factors, as well as all the negative outcomes that may occur to them or their surroundings. This is especially true if you grew up in a chaotic environment where things were uncertain, you had to walk on eggshells, and you were frequently terrified. You have little control over your life as a child, so you may overcompensate by closely regulating your own behavior or being strict with yourself.

However, is it that bad to be concerned about how much control we have over our lives and our surroundings?

Some people are fine with everything that happens in their lives, not questioning anything, just accepting it as what it is. However, the other does not want to settle for being just fine, they want to make sure that their lives are in control. We feel secure and protected when we have control and certainty. As a result, it is natural to want to control things and people in the sense that if we can control them, we will be safe and everything will be fine. If you feel the urge to exert full control over your surroundings and others, your anxiety may be a problem. Anxiety can make it feel like you have no control over anything. The more terrified you are of not being in control of your life, the more you want to control your life to feel more satisfied. Someone who matches this description is usually labeled as a control freak.

So what is wrong with trying to control things if it gives us a sense of safety?

The problem with trying to control everything is it is not feasible. The difficulty is that we can not control the vast majority of things in life, and trying to do so does not always make things better. As you are aware, being controlling may lead to a slew of new issues, such as stress and emotional problems. Physical and mental stress are exacerbated when you relentlessly expect perfection from yourself.  As you might expect, this type of stress has a negative impact on your health, mind, and soul, making it impossible to enjoy your life to the fullest.

Although anxiety infamously has a bad press, a little anxiety can be good…When we heard about anxiety, it has always been followed by negative perceptions. But, little did we know, having a little “amount” of anxiety can be a good thing. Anxiety serves a function, even though it may appear to be worthless at times. These feelings and symptoms are part of our natural stress response. Anxiety, often known as the fight-or-flight reaction, is designed to keep us safe and help us to respond to situations quickly.

Feeling anxious may be precisely the wake-up call for you to understand your current situation and initiate the necessary changes in your life. Recurrent concern and anxiety might indicate that certain aspects of your life are out of balance and need to be adjusted. For example, you may realize that your job is causing a lot of stress, that financial issues are affecting you to lose sleep and feel uncomfortable, or that your relationship is no longer functioning. Rather than constantly being seen negatively, anxiety might actually make you feel more motivated and prepared when confronted with challenges. Think about how your anxiety motivates you to achieve success in various aspects of your life. So, the next time you have anxiety, think about what it is trying to tell you and what changes you might need to make in your life.

When we are anxious, our focus goes to important aspects of our life. It helps us recognize issues that need our attention and then acts as a tool for preparation and motivation. For example, when you are worried about something, you are forced to analyze it and pay attention in a way that will ideally help you succeed. Another benefit of anxiety is people who are worried feel driven to talk and convey their feelings. It is a means for our minds to guide us in finding support and a secure place, and it may be vital to enable relationships to function correctly.

So, how much anxiety is too much?

Anxiety is a natural response to our surroundings. It allows us to avoid dangerous situations as well as potentially harmful issues and worries. However, despite its benefits, anxiety may easily become too much of a good thing if not managed properly. On the other hand, as we already heard, too much anxiety can result in neurological, psychological, and even physical diseases. However, too little of it can promote a careless attitude, which can lead to inattention, disorganization, poor performance, and a lack of passion to do a task successfully.

Finding the right balance of anxiety is essential for your health and performance. To make this happen, you have to channel your anxiety, so it will energize you rather than overwhelm you. Everyone feels anxiety; what matters is how you deal with it. So, if your anxiety turns you into a control freak, causes you so much stress, and affects the way you live your life, then it is already too much. Try not to think about things you can not control and enjoy your life a little bit.

Keep in mind that at the end of the day, trying to control every little thing in your life that stimulates fear is unlikely to work as you wish. You will eventually need to confront your fear and accept changes. Accepting that not every situation can be controlled is the first step towards progress. Ironically, you will feel more powerful once you let go of things that can not be controlled and focus on things that you can control.