Freedom Tools for Control People

Click the Transcript icon (immediately to the right of the CC icon) if you want to read the conversation.

Can you change if you are a control person? Yes. There are freedom tools for control people to help them and their relationships.

You can stop trying to get everyone to live the way you want. You can lighten your own burden and remove the load you have placed on those around you. It only happens when you start practicing freedom, not just for you but also for others.

Watch the video to learn simple tools for adding energy back to your life. These tools are easy to apply but require new thinking about life and others.

First, ask, "Is my fear real or imaginary?" 

Even though you know God created and allows freedom, you may need more evidence to change your thinking. Okay, think about real dangers and imaginary ones. The problem with controlling people is discerning the difference. How can you know if fear is imaginary? The answer comes from considering time – as in the past, present, and future. Control people see current behaviors and forecast a future result of the behavior, and that future result is always bad!

Here is something to memorize.

Imaginary fears refuse to use MAY for unknown outcomes!

When you have the urge to control, you use WILL, not MAY – in other words, it WILL happen! That drives even more energy to prove the “FACT” that bad things WILL happen.

This does not mean that we do not believe in boundaries and controls. Later, you will see how we combine control, freedom, consequences, and self-governance to fit God’s ways. We call it the Freedom V!

For example, in my son's early life, his unorganized, unkempt room irritated me. That unclean room became a huge issue when I mixed truth with speculation. I projected dire future results that would multiply upon him if he did not become responsible and clean his room. "If he is not responsible for small things, he will not be responsible for big things. His messy behavior will translate into a poor work ethic, making it difficult to keep a job. He will not be able to support a family, and he will … (fill in the rest of the story with heartbreak and tragedy)." But reality says I CAN'T know the future (apart from what God has revealed), so freedom required that I understand the difference between real and imaginary fears.

You fear them experiencing the consequence, or you fear having to initiate the consequence. Neither is a great option for you, so that drives you to control. “I don’t want to see them go through that, so I must prevent it from happening!” Or “I don’t want to be the ‘bad guy’ to put the consequence on them, so I must prevent it from happening!”

Fearing what might happen creates a structure that demands that we control! You may know the FEAR acronym. Our adaptation of it is

Future Events Appearing Real.

When our fear is in the FUTURE, it is imaginary for you and me because the future has not happened. "But the probability of it happening is real!" Sure, there are always probabilities and possibilities, but even if it has a 99% chance of happening, we still do not know; therefore, it is imaginary. The critical element is – what is the real threat? What am I afraid of right now? It is often not the situation or other person’s behavior, but your fear of what might happen!

So, learn to ask, "Is this fear real or imaginary?"

Second, focus on NOW

Fear is often irrational, especially when we use our imagination. When you focus on now, you learn to see the real threats rather than the horrible future. You can focus on now when you can see that the fear is imaginary, not real.

When I focused on now and applied it to the situation with my son and his room, I moved from speculation into reality. I could more easily see my options 1) I could want his room clean because that is part of the house rules, or 2) I could want his room clean because if it not cleaned, it would eventually lead to heartbreak and tragedy for him and me - a long, lonely, and sad future!

When presented with those options, the choice becomes rather clear, right? The reality of just wanting a clean room removes the dramatic emotions of “getting that room cleaned or else!!” The change becomes his issue and his choice of consequences or not.

Since God allows freedom, He clearly states that any change is the responsibility of each individual. So, we can encourage change, but ultimately, people change because of their own decisions. It is their responsibility.

The minute I say it is their responsibility, you may think I do not care if they change. That is wrong! I am incredibly interested in people changing, which is a slippery slope to control. Even if changing is their responsibility, I still am responsible for sharing the truth with them. God may use my sharing with them to help them change their thinking.

Consider these points about freedom and others changing.

  • Freedom is into reality; it is NOT YOUR JOB to change them – it’s theirs
  • Freedom tells the truth, pursues their best, and invites them to change
  • Freedom hopes, prays, encourages, and sometimes exhorts and rebukes them to change
  • Freedom does not give up on them changing but does not demand it

This entire book is about helping people change. But it respects your freedom to reject everything and anything that is said. That is God’s model of how He acts with us.

Finally, remember God allows freedom. 

This is the most important because God is all-powerful and can control, but He created and allowed freedom.

  • He controls everything AND allows freedom of choice
  • He shares what is best AND allows choosing the worst
  • He paints clear boundaries AND lets us cross them
  • He shares the consequences AND lets us experience them

God knows what will happen and still allows the freedom to choose what is wrong. He has the power to make everyone do what is right, make all evil go away, and remove all pain, but He does not for His perfect reasons. God knows all the consequences of all bad choices, yet He is not controlling people or preventing them from sin and pain. He has graciously provided clear instructions in His Word for our best, AND He does not prevent us from doing exactly the opposite!

Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is kept safe. – Proverbs 29:25

RESULT: Profound Change. 

The above steps do NOT mean control people are to ignore the future. It is about living in REALITY - moving from a concept of danger to accurate risk assessment. That is a profound change benefitting all your relationships. No longer do you seek to control everything in sight. You begin seeing the clarity between real and imaginary fear. Soon, you practice freedom as a value for yourself and others too!

You will see that things are often much less dangerous than you perceive. You will become more fun to be around because you will see how often your fears are imagined. You will have more energy to care for and pursue the best for others rather than control them.

Finally, you can remove the burden of thinking it is your job to protect the universe.  Of course, it never has been – you are finally into reality to see it has never been your job.


accept freedom for others, add energy back to your life, fear drives control, fear is powerful, freedom tools, refuse to use may for unknown outcomes, TV0044

Television Shows you may also like

Podcasts you may also like

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}