Today I want to talk to you about something that I consider paramount to a person’s success, not just in their business/professional lives, but more importantly, in their personal growth journey. That subject is the idea of locus of control. By that I mean, are you a person that has an internal locus of control or an external locus of control?
You may be asking, “I have no idea what that means.” I didn’t either, until I had a professor come into my life and explain just how important this concept is. So let me break it down. If you have an external locus of control, then you believe that your life is fate based, meaning forces outside of your control are responsible for the things that occur in your life. For example, if you get fired, you’d say something like, “Why does this always happen to me?” Or if you come up against an obstacle you’ll say, “Why bother?” On the other hand, if you have an internal locus of control, you believe that you have complete control over your life. When you live your life this way, you realize that you can do anything, because you control how your future plays out.
After reading the above, which one would you say that you are? I admit, for the better part of my life, I had an external perspective. I use to think, why do bad things always happen to me? Why even try to do something because my past history says that I am going to fail anyway? This creates a dangerous precedence in our lives, because when we blame external factors we relinquish all control, and develop a mindset that reacts to the circumstances in our lives, instead of creating them.
Only through the help of some very successful people that came into my life did my perspective start to shift. They helped me to realize that I am in complete control of my life, and that this belief that things were happening to me because of outside forces in my life was a myth. When we begin to realize that we are ridiculously in control of your own life, we start to take back control and ownership over our life. We stop blaming others for our current circumstances and start to have an inward perspective.
This also allows us to begin the process of creating solutions to improve and better our lives. The problem when we allow others to have this control over our circumstances, is that we are left waiting for them to come and “fix” whatever issues we have. This can be a frustrating and painful time because of the fact that we cannot control the actions of anyone else. So what ends up happening is we sit and wait, hoping that this person, system, entity will come along and eventually fix our problems. While we wait, our problems increase exponentially until we find ourselves in an even deeper hole than we were before.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. Starting today, we can say no more. Today we start taking back control of our own lives, take ownership, and start to move forward, implementing positive change to achieve the goals we have for ourselves, and ultimately become the best version of ourselves. That is my great hope for everyone reading this today. Let us know if the comments below . . . what area of your life do you need to start taking control of, and what steps will you take to achieve this?