Stop worrying about what you can’t control

By Miranda Mowrey, Columnist

Friends can be late. Significant others can hurt your feelings without intending to. Even your mom can forget that you’re deathly allergic to cinnamon and make snickerdoodle cookies on your birthday. The problem with depending on people, places, things, you name it, to make you happy is that it is impossible for these things to always meet your expectations.

Granted, family, friends, your favorite band, or the venti caramel macchiato from Starbucks all make life better most of the time. But the truth is, the world is imperfect and unpredictable. When things that we expect to give us satisfaction inevitably don’t go the way we had hoped, our mood changes for the worst.

It is so important to stop wasting our valuable time and energy on trying to control the uncontrollables. Even though X, Y and Z were complete busts, accepting that you cannot control X, Y and Z, but can control your reaction to them is key. Remember that your emotions do not need to be determined by externalities, and instead should be determined by your response to the externalities.

You could have had the worst day. The construction on York Road made you late to class, you forgot your phone charger at home, and you got called into work last minute. You can’t control the construction, so why not jam out to the song you have been listening to non-stop one more time as you sit in traffic?

Let your phone die and spark a conversation with your professor before class instead. Stop groaning about work and think about how the extra cash will fund your Rex Orange County concert ticket. Consciously choosing to react in a positive, beneficial way to life’s curveballs, big or small, is the key to living a happy and peaceful life.

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