I don’t know if you watch football on TV. I don’t know if I’m in the fanatic range, but I do follow the Green Bay Packers throughout the week. I used to be more invested in the success of the team – up during the week if they won and down when they lost. Maybe it’s maturity or maybe it’s a focus on the topic of this post, but lately I haven’t been as down when they lose.
Back when I was a kid I used to think that I had some control over the games. I would wear my lucky Packer jersey. I would eat the same food and all that kind of crazy stuff.
Now, however, I don’t let my mind think I can control the outcome of the games. I certainly enjoy watching. I show disappointment for a poor play, but I don’t feel like it was my fault.
And that’s the topic of today’s post – The Things You Can And Cannot Control.
I realized I can’t control the outcome of football games. After that realization I started enjoying the game more.
Things You Can’t Control In Business
And it’s true in all facets of life including business. I try to take the approach that there are just some things in business that are out of control. And that’s really difficult as a business owner or manager. I think our lot craves on being in control. It’s why we’re entrepreneurs. So convincing ourselves that there are some things we can’t control is very difficult.
Here are some examples:
I can’t control how a client or inquiry reacts to the job we’re doing. (Wait a second for further explanation later)
I can’t control when clients pay their invoices.
I can’t control the type of work writers are capable of doing.
And there are many more.
You can drive yourself crazy if you think you can control everything that goes on with your business especially when it comes to other people. We can’t control other people. We try, but it always fails in the long run. Trust me, I’ve tried to control things and I drove myself crazy.
Things You Can Control
Now, understanding what you can control is one side of the coin. The other is having the ability to figure out what you can control.
It’s a cliché, but that usually means it’s true – you can’t control what someone does to you or in a way that affects you, but you can control how you react to it.
I can’t control how a client reacts to the job we’re doing, but I do have control over the quality of work we do. I do have control over putting in more effort to start working with the right clients.
I can’t control when clients pay their invoices, but I can make sure they have all the information they need to pay. I can make sure we have the accountant’s contact information so they can pay directly. And I can work with clients that pay on time and move on from clients that have a tendency to not pay in a timely fashion.
I can’t control the type of work writers are capable of doing, but I can provide the tools they need and the coaching and direction they need. And I can control the writers we bring on board for the long run.
There is a lot more we could cover on this topic in business and in life, but the main point I wanted to get across is that it doesn’t pay to get worked up over things you can’t control. I’m still working on it in my golf game. I still get a little steamed if I hit a good golf shot only to see it bounce off a mound in the fairway and into the water hazard.
This is life. Good things happen and bad things happen. You have to trust that those things even out. Let the bad bounces roll off your back and focus on the things you can control.