Ladylikeness 11: everybody wants to rule the world
"Ladies work on controlling themselves, not others."
Do what I want and we'll get along fine.
You're probably not like this. This is probably only me. But I really enjoy it when people think like I think and do what I want and say what I'd say.
That's just me, right? And the rest of society.
We're in an era of outlandish thought control. Think differently than the loudest mouth in the room and you're automatically vilified. How dare you have a different opinion!
In the political arena, that obsession to control and conform others, even against their will, has caused violence, disorder, and bloodshed. And always has.
But forced control is easy to spot in the extreme and harder to see in the moderate. Why we want to control others or them us, in fact, might even be for our perceived good. We see the issue, see the danger ahead, see the right path to take. All we want is to protect them. Or educate them. Or reason with them so they'll see the right choice. And they think the same about us.
That kind of control isn't hate-filled or likely to end in Molotov cocktails. But, like its extreme counterpart, it's also fruitless.
The truth is, we can't control anyone. Trying will only bring us frustration, anxiety, and defeat. It'll take away our peace and substitute it with sleepless nights.
That's why Ladies focus their energy on what they can control - themselves and their life choices. Controlling their own tongue, emotions, thoughts, and actions is a full-time job and THEIR responsibility. Controlling others is not.
How To Put This Truth Into Action
One of the hardest things to accept in life is what is and is not our responsibility and under our control. Many times people, some with good intentions and some not, will invade our space and, at times, we may do the same with them.
When in doubt, the one thing we know we can always do is live our life as an example to follow. What we cannot convince others of by using well-structured arguments, we might be able to persuade them to embrace by living it out so they can observe.
And healthy boundaries help us to achieve that life. It will help us focus on the aspects of our life we can change and release the things we can't.
If this is an area where you are struggling, either to let go or get free from others, I can't recommend Boundaries by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend highly enough. I read it every few years and gift it often, too.
What is that old saying about good fences and good neighbors? I think they were on to something there.