How the Need to Control Hurts Us And How to Let It Go

Author: Daniel A. Miller

Review Review Review Review Review


First of all, I was very happy to receive a copy of this book from the publisher and by my own mistake, I ended up receiving two from them.  So, I would like to offer the second copy I have for free to one of my readers.  To be eligible, I am going to draw from the first 10 commenters who leave an example of how letting go of control either helps them or how holding onto it has hindered them.  I’ll send the free copy of the book to you after drawing the winner!

The book itself covers the topic of control thoroughly and specific the problems of trying to control the people and events around you.  Its evident now almost everyone faces these challenges at varying levels and quite likely, you will have a lot to learn from the life experience of the author, Daniel Miller.  The two most powerful messages from this are:

  • Accepting What Is
  • Addressing Our Fear

Accepting What Is

There are many problems with how much and how often people feel they need to control situations.  Acceptance replaces that compulsion and puts the focus on ourselves instead of desire to change others and uncontrollable circumstances.  This acceptance in life drives a peace within yourself and state of mind that lets you connect more easily with others without the burdens and stresses we create by feeling we can control it.  Miller provides many ideas and suggestions on how a person can start to accept things openly.  Questioning the situations and impact of decision, examining what we get from seeking the control (which is usually nothing but stress), and by looking for what we can have in its place are all great methods to start the journey of easily accepting life as it comes.  No mistake is made pretending it is easy, and I easily agree that it is not, it requires a mindset shift, beliefs and new habits to truly let acceptance become your norm but in the end it is well worth it and the serenity found in doing so makes life much easier to enjoy!

Addressing Our Fears

Strong emotions are quick to control overwhelm us and emotions such as anxiety, anger and fear pressure us to manipulate people and events to get what we think we need, control!  Often this is done in situations where people are quick to decide they know what is best over other people and they close off consideration of what others may need or want for their own emotional driven desires.  Many people let these fears infiltrate many aspects of their lives and the fears can dominate what they think and then consequently, how they behave.  Fear quickly clouds judgment and can hard to detect and even harder to break free from.  It does however, start by realizing the grip fear can have and then by finding ways to address it.  Miller provides guidance here on confronting fears and how to learn to shift away from their controlling nature.

There are more controlling factors, not just fear and Miller covers these topics as well, although not as thoroughly:

  • Anger / Resentment
  • Avoidance
  • Parenting Control
  • Love Control
  • Sports Control
  • Work Control
  • Creative Control

Final Thoughts

Overall, this is a great book.  It’s really aimed at people who struggle with control in the first place and that is the only reason I didn’t enjoy it as much as many other reads.  I don’t struggle with control at all, fears or not accepting life as it comes.  Those things are easy for me now and while the advice in the book may not have applied, I can certainly see how I could have used it years ago when I did face more of those challenges.  My experience in changing those aspects in my life and now easily having that serenity and peace, does however make it easy to recognize the value of this book and Miller’s techniques.  The only difference that I have learned is really a new definition of control.  With emotions out of the way affecting one’s life, I define control very differently now and it seems to me that true control of your life and ability to enjoy it and connect with others comes when you get to that state of serenity and don’t let negative emotions take over your life.  In my mind, when negative emotions steer your behaviors, you have NO control whatsoever.  The desire to control others as this book covers so well is true, but eventually the control comes back to yourself, your emotions and your reactions in life.  Once you have that, in a way, it is not loosing control at all, but actually gaining control of what matters more in your life, your feelings, your connections and your reactions to circumstances.  All that gives you more peace and serenity, and the control is in a completely different place, that’s all.

So, I think you will enjoy the book as well and it would be especially useful if you relate to another of those fears and negative emotions and feel out of control.


Again, to win a free copy of this book, you need to comment below and leave an example of how letting go of control either helps you or how holding onto it has hindered you.  I’ll send the free copy of the book to you after drawing the winner!

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