A 90-Second Note to Self that Will Spare Some Pain Today

A 90-Second Note to Self that Will Spare Some Pain Today


By Angel Chernoff

Starting today, don’t hold yourself down with things you can’t control. Instead, control how you respond. In your response is your greatest power in the long run.

There’s an analogy Marc and I often think of when we’re considering how we’d like to control all aspects of our lives: “If you want to control the animals, give them a bigger pasture.” If you have a pasture full of animals and they’re all acting rowdy, can you really expect yourself to be able to control them?


What you can do is give them a larger pasture. Let them roam. Let them graze and wander. By giving them some extra space, you’ll see that relinquishing control can be freeing, and can even give you a new perspective on what’s really important.

This same philosophy holds true for many aspects of life—stepping back and allowing certain things to happen means these things will take care of themselves and your needs will also be met. You will have less stress (and less to do), and more time and energy to work on the things that truly matter—the things you actually can control, like your attitude about everything.

This form of letting go is not giving up. It’s about surrendering any obsessive attachments to specific people, outcomes, and situations. It means showing up every day in your life with the intention to be your best self, without expecting life to go a certain way. Have goals and dreams, take purposeful action, and build great relationships, but detach from what you think every aspect of your life “must” look like in order to be “good enough” for you.

Of course, as I’m sure you are aware, letting go and responding better in the heat of the moment is easier said than done. It takes some guidance and practice to get right. Among others, you will need:

  • Smart ways to deal with toxic relationships—especially if it’s your family, co-workers or significant others.
  • Crystal clear tactics to help you set and STICK TO healthy personal boundaries (without being disrespectful or a pushover).
  • To uncover hidden beliefs that hold you back.
  • To overcome hard times and roadblocks so you can do what matters consistently in your life.

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