Leaders and managers can get frustrated when wanting to control how things are done.
Leaders and managers can get frustrated when wanting to control how things are done. jacoblund

Find the advantage in less power to you

Peace is the result of retraining your mind to process life as it is, rather than how you think it should be.

This simple quote and fundamental truth provided by the late Dr Wayne Dyer provides a genuine opportunity to reflect on the impact our expectations have on relationships and how the desire to control the process and/or the outcome creates major issues and challenges in those relationships, either at work or in our personal sphere.

Over the past few weeks I have travelled to different parts of Australia to coach and it has become apparent the various frustrations voiced by these leaders/ managers is because they waste so much emotional energy on wanting to control how things get done.

Several have held on to the belief that if it isn't done the way they would do it, the result is not going to be good enough.

Think about the impact of that behaviour on an individual or team. What's the result? How would people feel if they weren't able to be authentic? If they felt they aren't trusted to find a solution or deliver an outcome in a way that works for them and gets the result because it must be done the way the manager dictates?

We - Rowena and I - often see this when we are working with couples or individuals who are being challenged in their personal relationships.

One of the partners has such a need to control how things get done around the house or in the kitchen or even in social situations that their desire to control diminishes the relationship to the point of separation. Even if they are told it is having that impact they are unable to step away from the behaviour and the relationship fails simply from the need to control.

What is that behaviour about? The result of it is unhappiness - for all parties. The cause? Fear. That fear could be vulnerability or failure or rejection but it is fear.

As I have learnt over time and from myriad experiences, it is easier to let go of expectations and allow the moment to unfold rather than to project a need or desire to force the outcome.

It saves a lot of energy and, when working with others, provides a far greater potential for a collaborative outcome that meets or even exceeds the brief.

How do we get there? Relief is found by accepting that we have no control over any situation or others. They'll do what they do to fit circumstances into their own world view - as we all do - and make decisions around that.

Simply, give clarity on the "why” and let the "how” unfold. It is what it is.

Nick Bennett is a facilitator, performance coach and partner of Minds Aligned: mindsaligned.com.au