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The Blessings of Acceptance

Are You a Love Controller?

21449638_sLove control obstructs the romantic flow.   It forces the action, rather than allowing the love currents to unfold naturally so that people can relax and just be themselves—and offer their love and kindness without pressure or expectations.  Simply put, most people don’t like being told what to do, how to be, or how to act in matters of the heart. Do you?

And yet, if you were to ask a friend or your love one if they considered themselves a love controller, my guess is that they would likely say no.  Are you a love controller?  Let’s find out.

The Love Control Test (from Losing Control, Finding Serenity: How the Need to Control Hurts Us and How to Let It Go.)

Ask yourself the following:

*Do I usually feel I know what’s best for my partner?

*Do I charm or pout or withdraw to get my way?  Continue reading

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Letting Go of Control Truths

let_go_balloon-300x225“Let go of control. You never had it in the first place!”

Not sure you agree?   Then, consider this:

“If you always do what you always did, you always get what you always got. So let go of control to get something new.”

Is micro-managing your children’s lives working for you? Not too well? Here’s a suggestion:

“Listen attentively to them without “counseling” them.   It is a healing gift that allows them to process their concerns by themselves.”  Continue reading

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Let the Love FLow on Valentine’s Day

f6b3d4d1f1bf994d06d75479a3e824ecIf you don’t control, you can flow–and that’s true with love as well.    So let go of love control this month and let the love flow!  For some guidance on how to do this, read my previous post “Enhance Your Valentine’s Day Love Flow.”

In the meantime, remember to

Let it Go!


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Intentions for Letting Go of Control in 2015


Have you set your intentions for 2015 yet? Because of their importance to my serenity, I annually review and update my intentions for letting go of control. Such intentions are highly effective in reducing our need or compulsion to control others and things. Below are my intentions for letting go of control in 2015 together with links to prior posts on the particular subjects.

I intend to:

Let go of the things that I cannot realistically change

Trust more that my children will make decisions that are best for them

Trust that I will be okay whatever the situation

Reduce my expectations of others Continue reading

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An Essential Key to Avoiding Holiday Stress

16290581-stressed-woman-wearing-a-christmas-hat-against-a-grunge-backgroundIt’s during this time of year that we often hear the proverbial, “I just dread the holidays.”

I previously shared how this “dread” and its associated stress and anxiety can be lessened by letting go of control, as well as offering some useful decontrol tools.

Buy my wife recently shared with me a holiday story that clued me in on an essential key to avoiding holiday stress.   She had to buy some last minute gifts at our local mall’s department store, which required wading through these nerve-racking hurdles:

*First, she had to join the line dance of cars a block long entering the parking lot.   (Not fun if you like to move when you line dance, as my wife avidly demonstrated when we first met.)

*Once in, she had to drive like a matador would to avoid the cars aggressively darting for parking spaces as if they were winning lottery tickets.  Continue reading

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Letting Go of Denial

Denial is usually associated with rejecting or denying a certain state of affairs, or thinking or believing that things “aren’t so.” However, denial really encompasses much more than that; wishful thinking, turning a blind eye, and withdrawal, are just a few subtle ways of our not wanting to accept the “what is” in our lives. (See, “5 Keys to Practicing Acceptance”)

More specifically, denial includes such things as not admitting to ourselves that our spouse has a severe drinking problem or an addiction; not dealing with a recurring health issue; avoiding a serious business or financial matter; not accepting that our child has social problems; and, not owning up to a loss in performance in our favorite activities. (See, “Accepting the Limits of Old Age Brings Greater Happiness”)

Whatever its form or manner, denial is fraught with harm to our happiness and well being.   Continue reading

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A Valuable Key to a Healthier Heart

When my doctor checked my pulse and blood pressure at a recent physical exam, my pulse was only 47– well below the 60-80 norm—and my blood pressure was a healthy 98/68.  Admittedly, I exercise regularly, but leaving the doctor’s office I wondered whether that alone would account for such good readings–especially for a 70 year old.

It then occurred to me that the readings might also be attributable to the fact that I am now much better at letting go of control in important areas of my life (work, children, love ones, friends and the like).

In other words, could letting go of control be a valuable key to a healthier heart?

I believe it is.  Medical research and studies confirm that our hearts are adversely impacted by excessive stress, worry, fear, and anger. (See commentaries at and

And, quite simply:

*When we control less, we stress less; Continue reading

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10 Ways the Need to Control Hurts You

photo by Sara HasseMany people call them control freaks.   Some call them controllers.  Others refer to them as nitpickers and micromanagers.  Whatever you call them, they all have one clear thing in common: The Need to Control.

Hence, the subtitle of my book Losing Control, Finding Serenity:  “How the Need to Control Hurts Us and How to Let It Go.”    As such, the book examines in depth (using true stories) the many ways our need to control hurts us—and others.

Controlling too much is like gripping a rapidly moving conveyor built–you either get burned or dragged along.  Here are 10 ways:

1.  The intensity of our control driven actions “blinds” us from recognizing new paths and opportunities that could vastly improve our lives.

2.  The need to control our children’s lives deprives them of opportunities for personal growth.   It also leads to resentment between parent and child. (See, “Over Controlling Parents—Harm Now Confirmed“)

3.  Control obstructs the creative process.   Creativity flourishes with “opening up”, whereas control closes it down. (See, “Free Your Creative Flow by Letting Go of Control“)

Continue reading

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A Unique Benefit of Practicing Gratitude*

*Below is an article I wrote that was recently published in Tiny Buddha, a leading personal growth and inspiration blog.

Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others”–Cicero

Being grateful or practicing gratitude has many benefits, including improving our health, relationships, careers, sleep, and self-esteem, to name just a few.  In recent years, these benefits have been confirmed in scientific studies showing how the brain is “rewired” by continuous grateful thoughts.   (see “The Grateful Brain”)

However, I recently discovered (and experienced) another significant, and I believe mainly overlooked, benefit of being grateful—in the somewhat unusual setting of a major seniors championship tennis tournament I played in Palm Springs this past January.   I learned that,

Practicing Gratitude Calms the Nerves and Mind Continue reading

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Finding Time by Letting Go of Control

How often do you find yourself wondering, “where has all the time gone today?”(or “this week?”)  I wonder about that fairly often and my guess is that most people do, as well.   There is no question (in my mind, at least) that our ever-complex, technology driven world absorbs bundles of our time—ironically, often through the use of “time-saving”  devices such as texting, googling, using engaging apps, and the like.  Similarly, most timesaving strategies simply make room for us to do more things with our time, rather than relieving time related stress and pressure.

Consequently, we always feel woefully short of time.  Leslie Perlow of the Harvard School of Business has aptly coined the phrase “time famine” to describe this time quandary.

There is another (and easily overlooked) reason that many of us find ourselves short of time: We are too controlling.

Losing Control, Finding Time Continue reading

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