When I was growing up, my dad told me, “Life is ten percent what happens to you and ninety percent how you react to it.”
What my dad was trying to tell me is that much of what happens to us in life is outside of my control, but the one thing I could control no matter the circumstance was myself.
It’s a lesson I’m still learning.
Every day it seems there’s some new way for me to practice letting go of control and learning how to better control my reactions. These lessons came even faster after my wife and I had children.
But once it finally sank in how right my dad was, I felt freer.
When I realized that I couldn’t control how others acted or what they really thought of me, I was able to devote more of my mental and emotional energy to my clients, to being a good father and husband, and to being a better person in all of my relationships.
I just had to relinquish control over the lie that I had control in the first place and choose to take responsibility for my own actions.
But I don’t think my dad was 100 percent correct in his 90/10 quote.
That’s for next time.