Before I start, I’d like to wish all a happy independence day, even if you are from another country. For in the end, most of us are working towards some form of autonomy. May we all find financial, social, personal, and spiritual independence.
Failure is defined as not reaching a goal or expectation. Life is chaotic, and variables change within a glance. No wonder weather is challenging to predict. Unless you’re in Hawaii, where every day is beautiful, but, for the rest of us, storms can come without warning. To reduce the impact of the damaging winds, or the uncontrolled variables, we place controls. These controls are a great thing until we take it too far. Here are some traits that will help identify someone who needs to control everything.
Correcting Others: It is acceptable to correct children on their grammar, etiquette, and attitude. After all, they are in the learning stage of life. It is not all right to correct every adult on these same terms 24/7. We are not their guardian. Unless they ask for help, please don’t force it. If someone spells beer y-u-c-k, let it be; this is assuming that their action is not malice.
Winning Arguments: We do not need to “win” arguments. Our conversations should never be a competition. We do not have a “point.” We have a view, and we love to share it. It’s a universal human trait. When conversing, we should listen, not think about our next rebuttal. How rude would it be if we were giving our input and noticed the glazed over look signaling that the other person was not focused on what we were saying? Yeah, that is never a fun time.
Trouble Admitting Errors: No one is perfect, and we all make mistakes. But for some of us, we feel the need to hide our mistakes and deny they exist. Perhaps this stems from the need to correct others. In the military, we groomed each other all the time. We did it in an accepting manner, not condescending. It’s better if we catch each other’s mistakes than our superiors. Every once in a while, someone would take it in the wrong manner. We all have those days when we don’t want to be spoken to or even looked at. But some deny ever being wrong. Denial is not the right mindset and does not promote a healthy relationship.
Being Judgmental: This mindset takes “correcting others” to the next level. When we can only see the “wrong” in others, then we need to reevaluate our viewpoint. We are not better than anyone else. We have no right to look down at others. We are all human, beautiful, and ugly at the same time. That’s what makes us so awesome. But, to place judgment on others is to put ourselves on a pedestal and take away that glow that we have. A lack of acceptance is an error on our part. This simple fact may be a hard pill to swallow for someone who can’t admit they are wrong.
Road Rage: Here is where this ties in together, and some of us are about to have an “A-ha! I get it!” moment. Let’s take driver-A. They are judgmental, have trouble admitting they are wrong, and always correct others. Yup, this is a road rage maniac in the making. This is the person who complains that people never let them in, but never allows others to merge over. They are late because of others driving, not because they didn’t plan for delays. Yelling and violent hand gestures fly from our friend at every mile of the way. Of course, their blood pressure is elevated, and rational thinking is out the window. It’s now time to start erratic lane changing to escape this hell we call highway 10.
These caveats define a controlling personality. Does this mean every control freak falls under these premises? Of course not, but most do. If we take the time to evaluate ourselves, we may find that we fit the bill closer than we would like to imagine. This revelation doesn’t mean we are inadequate. It shows that we have similar traits. At some point in our lives, we will have days where we meet each criterion listed above.
So to achieve our independence, may we all find that footing that allows us to progress closer to our goals. Life is too short to waste on petty idealisms such as misused grammar, other people’s manners, and defending ourselves when we know we are wrong. If we are to be happy, then we need to find peace within ourselves. We must accept our flaws and move on. After all, no one is perfect. Right?