Do You Feel in Control of Your Life?
(Below is an excerpt from the first chapter of my new book, Life Mastery: The Fully Functional Life)
Imagine yourself being a woman who is married, has two children, a career, and desires to serve others beyond her family. Her life is non-stop.
When at work, she is the go-to person. It’s as if the team, department, or company she works for (or owns) can’t function without her. She seems to care more deeply what happens, and that what happens is done correctly, than the others with whom she works. So, she feels a heavy weight of responsibility to make sure things are done “right”.
At home, the story is very similar. The husband is lost without her organizational skills. Depending on their ages, the kids don’t realize just how chaotic their lives would be without all the work she does, much of it behind-the-scenes. Even when she is with the family, she feels the need to remind them about picking up their clothes, putting things away, getting to appointments, etc. The only times the rest of the family observe what it’s like without her there is when she’s traveling for work or to care for extended-family matters outside their locale. The far-reaching effects of her work quickly become noticeable when she’s not there.
Because of her heart for people, she volunteers to serve others outside the home. When she does, she is just as focused and committed as she is in the other areas of her life. She strongly believes in the people and the cause she is serving. She works tirelessly on committees and projects while at the charity or organization and on additional planning, organizing, fund-raising, etc. outside of her “official” volunteer time.
Now, what is conspicuous by its absence from this description? Me time. Yes, she always looks well-dressed with her make-up just right and very well kempt when in public. She appears to outsiders to have it all together. Based on my experience working with hundreds of women, that’s probably not the truth. She finds herself giving up her time and her resources for everyone else.
It starts with small things and escalates into consuming her life. As the children grow from being infants who need constant care to maturing to where they could be more self-sufficient, her desire to help them have the best life possible can be taken advantage of and the children learn to be dependent on her. If the husband is seen as needing her to remember appointments, know the quickest route to a destination, the to-do list around the house, etc., after a few of those reminders he abdicates his thinking to her and becomes dependent on her, as well. Because she is so driven and desires everything to be done “right”, people whom she works for, and with, learn to become dependent on her, too. This isn’t a reprobation of her. It’s the story I’ve heard many times.
Feeling everyone is dependent on her, here’s what happens…
She chooses to eat less-than-healthy food for the sake of expediency. If she exercises at all, it’s limited to 20-30 minutes 2-3 times per week. Many times, she gives up attempting to exercise because she feels the little amount she can won’t produce the results she desires. Which leads to…
Being overweight. Whether it’s the “muffin top”, or much more weight than that, she worries about her looks. She may feel unlovable by her husband because she believes her looks don’t warrant physical interaction. Beyond that, she’s so consumed with everything else in life that being intimate with her husband is #501 on a list of 500.
Although well-dressed and adorned well, she’s self-conscious. She tells herself all that the sacrifice is okay because it’s for the family, for work, and for all the other people she cares about.
If you were to talk to her in a time and place where she feels she can divulge her true feelings, her story would be one where she wishes things were different; where she would like to be able to be able to depend on others to care for themselves more and less on her. She would tell the story of wanting to be cared for, supported, and loved in the way she wants.
From this oft told story, you can see that, as much as she thinks she’s in control, in reality, she has lost control of her life.
Let’s examine other areas in life where people can think they’re in control, only to find they aren’t.
(End of excerpt)
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+++++++++++++++About Dr. Edward Lewellen++++++++++++++++
Dr. Edward Lewellen is an expert in creating methodologies for people to learn to use their mind; their beliefs, thoughts, and behaviors, and put them back in control of their lives and become top-producers. He is a Master Executive Coach, leadership and sales expert, and keynote speaker for some of the largest global organizations.