Tag Archives: craving for
Because it is wired into us to
..~ seek pleasure and avoid pain,
..~ imagine a perfect life (one that meets all our needs and makes us perfectly happy), and then
..~ try to make those imaginings come true.
The word controlling covers all forms of this imagining and trying.
Our trying may be large (building a skyscraper) or small (killing crabgrass), complex (winning a war) or simple (salting my soup).
It may be important (curing cancer) or petty (trimming toenails), public (getting elected) or private (losing weight), essential (avoiding a car crash) or incidental (matching socks).
I may inflict my trying on other people (get you to stop drinking, kiss me, wash the dishes, give me a raise) or on myself (raise my self-esteem, lose weight, hide my anger, learn French).
All this involves seeking some form of control.
We’re controlling nearly all of the time.
We control automatically and unconsciously, waking and sleeping, out in the world and in the privacy of our thoughts.
From birth until death.
The only time we’re not controlling is when we can relax, and do nothing, and trust that things will work out just fine anyway.
How often can you do that?
We’re forming two online study/support groups for readers who want to explore these ideas with me in real time. One group is for therapists who want to integrate these ideas into their clinical work. Both groups will be small, eight members at most, and meet weekly. Fee is $50 per session, and group members may purchase Monkeytraps (The Book) at half price. Interested? Write me: email@example.com.
That’s how I define control.
It’s not a definition you’ll find in any dictionary, and probably not how you define it.
But it’s essential to understanding everything that follows.
Dictate means rearrange or edit according to our preferences. Reality means, well, everything — everything outside us (people, places and things) and inside us (thoughts, feelings, behavior) too.
Defined this broadly, the wish for control stands behind just about everything we do consciously.
Plus most of what we do unconsciously (feel, fantasize, worry, dream) as well.
We seek control in order to get reality to behave as we want it to.
We seek control because we want to make the world adjust itself to us, instead of vice versa.
We all want control in this sense.
Not just want, either.
We crave it.
Control is the mother of all motivations.
Every human ever born has craved it and chased it.
Because it’s a craving that is literally built into us.