Control vs. Acceptance

In life we mere humans have very little control over anything. Small things, like whether your car will develop a fault, the price rise of your TV package, or the chance of a salary increase as part of your annual review. And big things, like whether you’ll get killed that day, develop a life-changing illness, or win a million on a scratch-card, or if an asteroid will hit the planet and wipe you out along with half of the life on Earth. No control whatsoever.

The only thing that you can control is yourself. And even that isn’t without its problems! Try not to think of a pink panda… Did you manage not to think of that pink panda? Thought not.

So… no control, except a limited kind of twisted dictatorship over yourself.

If not ‘control’ then what…?

To me, what logically follows is to accept life as it is. That’s not to say for one minute that I advocate ‘giving up’ or not striving. But be aware that there are things that cannot be controlled and that, therefore, the best alternative is to accept, without resistance. That is key. As the Borg so adroitly put it: resistance is futile.

I’m not religious in any way (although I would argue that I am spiritual), but it’s useful to remind myself from time to time of the Serenity Prayer:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.

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