The Secret Handbook 4 Teens

Want 2 Live Happy? Be Willing 2 Lose Control

Throughout your life you will discover that many of life’s painful moments end up being the ones that teach you the most. My parents are in their 80s and both have serious health issues so every day is filled with stress, sadness and the very strong desire to be in control of the situation because I can obviously fix everything and make it right, right? Ah, that’s the thing. I’m learning that I can’t make it right. I’m also (slowly and painfully) learning that I can’t control the situation. I can’t make my mom rest. I can’t make them get the help they so desperately need. I can’t make them move to a place that would be safer and more comfortable for them. I obviously have all the answers! Why don’t they seet his? If only the world would listen to me, it would be a better place.

Does any of this sound familiar?

Throughout out lives and even throughout the day, we are constantly examining other peoples’ behaviors and actions and coming up, in our oh-so-perfect minds, with better ways of doing things. If only he would drive faster. If only she would study more. If only she would break up with him. If only he would eat healthier. If only she would listen to better music. If only, if only, if only, if only the world would listen to me, it would be a better place!

Here’s the thing. If you really want to live happy, you need to give up trying to control or wishing you could control the decisions, behaviors, choices and actions of others. Sometimes you might actually be right and that person’s life would improve if only they would stop drinking 6 sodas a day but you can’t change them and, in order to be happy, you need to stop trying.

Focus on you. Focus on your own happiness. Focus on what you can control. Focus on your own behaviors. Focus on living your own best life. I promise if you do this, you will be happy and, you never know, by setting a positive example for others, you may just end up changing some of those things you’d like to change!

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