We would sometimes love to have precision control over life like a computer over the programs it runs. But it does not happen. We do not live in the matrix and we are not able to keep control over every aspect of everything every day.

The Japanese theory of wabi sabi reminds us of this and in fact it tells us that this is important. Without being able to allow life to exert some of the control we would burn out and become ill. We cannot do everything all of the time; we have to allow life to do some of it for us. Now, more than ever, we need to remember that we cannot control everything. We need to live in our world of control and look after ourselves. Control what you can. Let the rest go.

As an example, my children often come up to me and say, “she won’t get
dressed” or “his room is not tidy”. And I reply, “have you done it?”. You can
imagine what they say next. If you have done what you can to control the
aspects of life that you personally can control, then everything else will start to change around you if it can see it. Marie Kondo talks about this in her book The Art of Tidying. She kept trying to tidy everyone else and then realised that actually if she tidied herself first, they would start to join in with her.

Then there are aspects of life beyond our control completely. The greater world with things we have no influence over. that which we can read about every day in the news, hear about on the radio, see on the TV. As we cannot influence some things at all the best way to deal with them is to limit our exposure. It will not change regardless of how much we know about it and worrying about it will not help. If we know the rules and how to behave for safety, we do not need constant updates on numbers and rates.

So today try it. Take control of what you can and when faced with something you cannot take a deep breath and let it go. Do what you can about your life and yourself. Like my eight year old, get yourself dressed before you worry whether someone else has yet. And maybe, by seeing you do it, they will get dressed too.

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