We all want to know the outcome.
Which means we miss out on so much.
In my graduate school work (and what I learn from the School of Life), I'm learning how much people fear change and uncertainty. To avoid this discomfort of failure and disappointment, we try to control as much as we can in life.
Which means we miss out on the awesomeness that would be available to us that we can't even see or anticipate. By trying to control everything, the outcomes, the actions of others, ourselves, etc., we limit our experience to the VERY LITTLE worlds that we know. The limited knowledge we've gained from our life experience is the stuff we subsequently try to create a life from--and we limit or prevent ourselves from experiencing the many thoughts, ideas and experiences that are way beyond what we already know.
We create best-laid plans to live these incredible lives according to what we think would be great or ideal or perfect but in reality, those plans can end up costing us.
Recently, I was developing a new idea for my business. I love working with people one-on-one and giving one-shot talks but I wanted something that was some kind of combination between the two. I started to develop it and kept trying to create a program strictly about nutrition and lifestyle habits because I thought that was all people would really be interested in. But I l felt like something was missing. It wasn't totally me.
I wanted to know it would be successful so I was trying to create something that would appeal to the most people. I was playing it safe with something easy and generic.
In the meantime, I was thinking all these deep thoughts and writing deep-thought papers about my life experiences and reflections and posting some of that on my Facebook wall and people were loving that stuff.
And then, out of left field, this opportunity fell into my lap. I was asked to support a local small company with getting their managers to know themselves better, work better together as a team andbecome even more incredible leaders during a period of major change in the company.
Wow. That isn't exactly easy and safe stuff. It requires some deep digging--the kind of work I love and am really good at.
Suddenly, it became very clear what I needed to be focusing on. More than a mere wellness program, this was a total synthesis of what I know how to do, what I love to do and what I've been doing since the inception of my career. I had never really considered people would want the depth of material I wanted to present.
Those best-laid plans I had been drafting based on what I thought people would want and what I thought would be successful--easy and safe--turned out to be limiting what was possible for me and my present and future clients.
I don't offer easy and safe. I offer challenging and fun opportunities to grow and evolve because that's how I live my life. That's what makes me, me.
It definitely involves letting go of outcomes and opening myself up to failure and disappointment. But I'd rather experience those things than a lifetime of regret and "what-ifs" from trying to control outcomes too much.
What outcome are you attached to?
Is it even what you would enjoy the most if it happened? How do you know?
What would be possible or available to you (or others) if you let up on the reins and stopped trying to control so much?