When it comes to taking control of your life, there’s no time like the present. However, March 30th is a day specifically set aside for regaining control of your life and getting rid of the things that create stress. No matter where you are at in life or what struggles you may be facing, it is always possible to gain a little more control. Below are a few tips to help you gain more control over your life, courtesy of your trusted online mental health counselor.
I Am In Control Day – 1981
Though it has mainly been forgotten, I Am In Control Day actually stems from political roots. It originated on March 30th, 1981, when President Ronald Reagan was almost assassinated and rushed to the hospital with a bullet in his lung. Vice President George Bush was not yet at the White House and able to step in, so chaos consumed the White House.
In an attempt to calm the chaos, Secretary of State Alexander Haig stepped up and stated, “I am in control here.” While he surely meant that he would only be acting as the leader until George Bush arrived, his statement was taken entirely out of context by the media and he received a great deal of backlash for it. Eventually, the uproar the media caused led to Haig’s resignation.
I Am In Control Day – 2016
In the thirty-five years since Reagan’s attempted assassination, Haig’s statement has largely been forgotten. Since then, the day has evolved into an opportunity for Americans to assess their lives and gain control in the areas they feel it may be lacking.
No matter what your situation is, your first step should always be to take a deep breath. Deep breathing clears the mind and makes it easier to evaluate things objectively. Once you have taken a few deep breaths, you can assess your situation and take steps to improve it.
5 – Tips For Gaining Better Control Of Your Life
1. Make Small Projects A Priority
Sometimes people procrastinate small tasks because they convince themselves that they have to tackle the large tasks first. If your house is a mess, for example, you may avoid simple tasks (such as making the bed or doing the dishes). Instead, I encourage you to tackle the small tasks head-on. Accomplishing something is better than nothing, and you’ll likely feel like you’re in much better control of your situation.
2. Use A Weekly Planner
It’s time to get organized. On Monday, sit down with a planner and outline your goals for the coming week. What do you hope to accomplish? What days would be best for accomplishing them? By planning ahead for the entire week, you can space out your tasks to avoid overloading yourself on any given day. If something doesn’t get done on the day you planned, don’t beat yourself up over it. There is always another day.
3. Distinguish The Things You CAN Change From The Things You CAN’T
Worrying about the things you have no control over is a guaranteed way to increase your stress level – unfortunately, in an entirely unproductive way. It’s important to learn to distinguish which things you can affect and which things you cannot. Rather than losing time and energy worrying over things that you cannot change, identify the things you can impact and put your energy there.
4. Dedicate More Time To Cultivating The Right Relationships
It’s a proven fact – we become like the people we spend the most time with. It’s time to take a careful look at your close acquaintances. What are their lives like? Do they seem like someone you would like to model your own lifestyle after? If not, make a point to find new people to spend time with. Surrounding yourself with positive role models will make a big difference.
5. Don’t Be Afraid To Seek Help
Acknowledging that you need help is a big (sometimes challenging) step, but it’s the first one on the path towards personal growth. Seek help from a trusted friend, sibling, parent, or other outside source. If you are looking for additional help, consider seeking therapy from an experienced mental health counselor. A good therapist will listen to your concerns, help you assess your situation, and work with you to develop strategies for moving forward.
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