Check yourself: are you a Control Freak? – 15 Sep 16

Stress

Today I would like to write you about a rather complex problem which is not easy to solve or even to recognize for the person having it. Nearly always however it leads to the state which is nowadays called ‘burnout’. So if you read this and realize that you are going down this path, you may even be able to avoid burnout before it even happens. If you recognize it in someone else, please let them know, too – it is important to stay sane!

The problem starts with people having an urge to control. You can call them control freaks but even without wanting to be impolite and rude, you can express that they feel the need to check on everyone in the surrounding whether everything is done right. Generally, this seems like nothing too bad. The problem is however when this intensifies over time, usually over the course of some years.

This kind of people don’t stop with just having a look at what others are doing. No, they start giving completely unnecessary instructions before and during any process. They tell what is actually obvious. They come to check in on others although it is clearly not their task. They think ahead and in all directions possible where else they have to supervise, control or give advice.

You see where this is going? There are two consequences and both are not pleasant at all. Number one: people start disliking you if you are like this. Of course! It makes you feel bad if someone all the time comes over and points out what you are doing wrong. Or reminds you of things you would have known to do yourself! You feel as though the other one thinks you are a complete moron – why else would he show you, tell you and advise you for things you have lots of experience with or simply know how to do yourself? You would like to choose yourself, do things at your pace instead – and the result would be the same!

Number two is something that is maybe harder to notice than the growing dislike of your surrounding: you get into a lot of mental pressure if you do this! The reason is that it becomes a habit for you to think about every possible topic and try to find a solution for every problem. Along with that, you develop the idea that you are necessary for finding all these solutions and it would not happen if you were not there! Over the course of time, this thought gets bigger and bigger – subconsciously of course – and you find yourself thinking that you are responsible for each and everything. Inside yourself, you believe that everything would collapse without you. Nothing would work, you have to do it all.

That’s how burnout happens. You do and you do and you do and suddenly, the easiest task is too difficult. Stop before! Realize that the world was turning before you started controlling everyone and everything. The show will go on without you, too! You are allowed to take some time out and you can rely on others to complete their tasks successfully, too!

Please notice when you feel like you are the one who has to do everything himself. Notice when you tell someone what he would anyway already know and next time stop yourself before even saying it. Reduce your pressure by taking time out and occupying your mind otherwise. Enjoy that time and you will see that it gets better! You will get along better with others and be able to relax.

Most of all: you will save yourself from real trouble later on!

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