What It Really Means To Be Able To ‘Control The Controllables’


Whenever I go to meetings I pick one key take away. So much information can be thrown at you throughout, so I focus on one idea, quote or topic to make these interactions more meaningful. I work at a large financial firm and recently met the GM of another site. He talked about his career path and our company’s outlook. One thing he said really stuck with me, control the controllables.

Everything else, why worry?

I’m sure it’s a plethora of reasons why my winter depression is hitting me so hard this year. Mostly I attribute it to the fact that I ended a two-year relationship not so elegantly, the stress from our busiest season at work and finally my lack quality time with the beach, yo a Florida girl needs her sun. For some reason, when I feel sad or anxious I add guilt to the arrangement as if it’s not the human condition to feel any other feelings besides happiness throughout the day.

When I left the meeting, that one quote kept nagging at me.

Control the controllables.

When he said it, he was referring to our client’s attitude during this time of the year. A mix of long hold times and complicated tax issues can make for less than pleasant interactions with customers. Every now and then there’s going to be that one client who pushes you a little too far but you can’t control their actions or attitude. So step back, take a break and let it go. Don’t spend time worrying about things that are out of your control.

I started implementing this mantra at work and it’s helped relieve my stress and anxiety about my performance exponentially. I’ve always been a perfectionist, especially when it comes to my job. At first, it was hard to accept that maybe this quarter won’t be my best “numbers” wise, but I realized there’s only so much you can do. I began to wonder if I could apply this semi “laissez-faire” attitude to other aspects of my life.

Control what you can control and the rest, why worry?

With that in mind, booking my trip to Cozumel because your girl needs some vitamin D.