This article will prove that a control freak is not at all what she (or he) seems. With control freaks, what you see is NOT what you get.
Let’s break down control freaks, figure out what is going on, then suggest ways to let go of being a control freak and take genuine control of yourself.
What is a control freak?
A control freak is a person who obsesses about how things are going to turn out and determines that she is the one who to ensure that they turn out perfectly.
Both men and women can be control freaks. Some people have more control issues at work. Others suffer from the need to control everything at home. In both cases, those all around the control freak are suffering right along. It’s a tough attachment to have.
You might think that the control freak is attached to being in control. Think again. Taking control of things is a surface reaction to a much deeper attachment that involves feeling helpless.
What goes on inside a control freak?
In my work I have interviewed dozens of people who consider themselves control freaks. Some seem proud of their label, while others are exhausted of it. They have all shared on thing in common. At the core, they do NOT feel in control.
In fact, they feel helpless.
Here is how it works:
1. The control freak harbors deep feelings of helplessness. These feelings are often buried so deep that she has no idea how they affect her day in and day out.
2. The helpless feelings – consciously or unconsciously – manifest in thoughts or even obsessions that things are going to go wrong (or out of control). The control freak has an incredible knack for predicting how things can fail!
3. She then reacts to these obsessions by “taking control” so that disaster is avoided. This is where most people encounter the control freak, when she is in the process of avoiding disaster by determining what everyone around her is supposed to be doing.
What can a control freak do to change?
Real change is possible First, the control freak needs to recognize the source of her control issue – a core of helplessness that most likely stems from childhood experiences that are as of yet unresolved.
Then, we need to focus on the unresolved helplessness as the issue, not the surface symptom of needing to control things. When the helplessness is resolved, the need to control will vanish, as it is no longer necessary.
This is very tricky because many control freaks are simply not aware of the core issue. They may know that they obsess that things will go wrong and work like mad to prevent bad things from happening. The problem is, they do not see the impending disaster as an emotional overreaction to feeling helpless, deep down.
Once the control freak realizes that the control issue comes from unresolved feelings of helplessness that she is recycling in various ways into her present life, then she is on the path toward a true and last resolution.
If you believe any of this applies to you, then raise your consciousness around the issue. Begin to see how you are recycling childhood helplessness in your adult life. Do you still need to do this? When will it be time to let go of those old feelings and feel your inner resources?
These are the kinds of insights that lead to permanent resolution.
A great tool for control freaks, or anyone with behaviors they would like to change, is our A-H-A Solution Program. We have developed this online course to help you discover what attachment is causing you to stay in this behavioral pattern. Then, we provide you with customized solutions and strategies for change. Read more about it here.
Or, if you’d like to learn how to apply this information to your life through personal coaching with Mike Bundrant, please fill out the form below and someone will contact you soon.
Mike Bundrant is a retired psychotherapist, Master NLP trainer, and practicing life coach. He and his wife, Hope, founded iNLP Center in 2011. For information on coaching with Mike, please visit his coaching website AHA System.