Bert’s therapy (#14): The wrong something

So let me get this straight.

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therapist (1)

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Trying to control life means fighting reality…

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therapist (2)

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…which becomes an endless battle… 

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therapist (3)

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…you can never win.

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Yep.

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So chasing control means a life of frustration and disappointment. 

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Sure.  That’s the problem with any addiction.

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bert (6)

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You spend your life chasing the wrong thing.

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I always knew my life was missing something.

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therapist (7)

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But I thought that something was more control.

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Think again.

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What else could it be?

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Peace of mind?

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bert (10)

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Real intimacy?

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bert (11)

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Personal power?

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bert

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Joy? 

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All of those sound good.  Why do you mention them?

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They’re four things you can’t experience as long as you’re chasing control.

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Really?

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Really.

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Shit.

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therapist

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Have I been shopping at the wrong Wal-Mart.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Want more?

 

 

Your goal is not to stop it.  Your goal is to get to know it.

From Happiness means getting to know disappointment, an interview with (and brief profile of) Pema Chodron.

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We’re all hiding the exact same secret from each other.  That we suffer.  That we’re not perfect.  That we’re confused.  It’s like being at a masquerade ball all the time, trying to pretend that we are someone other than we are.  As if we’re embarrassed by our humanness.

From The open secret by Elizabeth Lesser.

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5 responses to “Bert’s therapy (#14): The wrong something

  • jpbauer (@jpbauer)

    Another wonderful masterpiece Steve! You continue to thread the needle on the first try. Keep uip the great work.

  • john

    Acceptance of what my reality is? my knee jerk reaction is to want what I want when I want it,(fight reality) and it gets me frustrated and dissapointed, I think I have heard that before! Thanks Bert,

  • Lisa Frederiksen - BreakingTheCycles.com

    Boy… I just went through a stretch of trying to control something that was none of my business to control. And the more I tried — because controlling one thing always morphs into something / someplace else — the crazier I got (angry, anxious, taking another’s failure to do as I thought best, personally, and reacting to that, too). It took my taking a long, hard look (lots of lap swimming, hikes, starring at the moon, wandering the neighborhood with my dog…) to come to terms with the fact that I was not minding my business, which for me, requires my getting deeply in touch with the feeling I’m trying to avoid/stuff/make go away through trying to control. When I finally do look below the feeling, look at its source and what I need to do for me (to keep me calm and enjoying my life), then, I can set a boundary that allows me to actually deal with my feeling (and its source). As you write, Steve, control is a constant struggle, but it’s when we search for the real culprit, we can let go of it, and then we thrive. Thanks for another great post!!

    • fritzfreud

      “The feeling I’m tryng to avoid/stuff/make go away.” That’s the key phrase here, I think, since that’s what compulsive controlling is all about — a blurring of boundaries, and the mistaken assumption that we have to control externals (people/places/things) in order to control internals (how we feel). Thanks, Lisa.

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