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Gain Control in Key Areas of Your Life

Changes—in our relationships, our jobs, or our home environment—can create stress. When a lot of changes happen at the same time, it can start to feel overwhelming.

Confusion and uncertainty can lead to feeling stuck. But if you give up trying, you give up control over your life.

Giving up control won’t make you happy

Whether at work, at school, or at home, you may find yourself only doing what you have to do. You may feel brain-dead, bored, and unmotivated... powerless. But it’s not true.

You might be angry and blame others. That won’t help you. It’s just giving away more control. You have to own your life to control it.

Think about your values and interests

Your values guide the way you relate to the world. Together with your interests, they steer you toward doing or not doing things.

If your values or interests are not being met, you may feel as if something is missing. And because we all have a number of different values and interests, we can’t usually fulfil them all in 1 role.

Luckily, our lives are made up of a number of roles. We can be parents, students, friends, artists, and community members, just to name a few. So you can meet different needs through different roles. For example:

  • An assembly line job may give you the routine and security you value. But you may choose to coach your sister’s soccer team because you also value influence and contact with people.
  • You may love exploring knowledge as a librarian. But, because you also enjoy physical activity, you could choose to take kickboxing classes a couple evenings a week.

As you face changes in your life, think about which of your values and interests are not being addressed. Are there ways you can take control of these missing elements by combining different roles?

Taking control of change

You won’t always see change and related challenge coming, but a change in 1 area has a way of bringing on change in others. When you own the situation you’re in, you can take charge of your next steps. You can take control and make the best of things moving forward.

By looking at your life in 8 key areas, you can get a clearer focus on the parts of your life that are currently stable, those that are changing, and how well you are responding to these changes. This helps you recognize which areas you want to concentrate on. As you focus on stabilizing 1 area at a time, you will regain a sense of control over multiple changes.

Here are the 8 key areas of life, along with a brief description of each. For each area, select the option that best describes the changes happening in this part of your life.

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