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The Art of Losing Your Control Freak Persona



It goes with the territory…most business entrepreneurs have some element of “control freak” in their nature. Lurking somewhere beneath the surface, it can rise up and strike at any time. It might be apparent to others or it could be so subtly hidden that even you don’t know it’s there. But it’s a monster, nevertheless, that can sabotage your odds of success.

Clearly, that idea of wanting to maintain a sense of control can work in your favor, but it also can prove to be an obstacle if left unchecked. Simply put, it may be time to let go to a degree and realize that the entire burden of your enterprise doesn’t need to fall squarely on you. In order to do that, however, you need to be able to recognize those situations where your desire for full control is taking over your better judgment. Here are a few ways that you can determine if you fall into this category.

Work Always Wins Out Over Play

Many bright and talented entrepreneurs put fun on the back-burner, for the sake of building their business. But then they forget to retrieve it later. If you recognize that trait in yourself, be mindful that you could be compromising your creativity because a fertile, creative mind needs stimuli outside of the workplace to function at its fullest. It needs a place and space for play, so you can formulate new ideas and gather energy from the dynamics of interaction with others. While working around the clock might generate short-term results, the law of diminishing returns will take over at some point in time.

You Constantly Multi-Task 

It’s understandable that people often take great pride in their ability to multi-task. But having that ability doesn’t mean it should be put to full use every moment of every day. Many health and psychology experts say that multi-tasking actually can be synonymous with Attention Deficit Disorder. It causes you to lose focus, and others will quickly notice that you’re not really listening. It’s important to do one thing at a time, and do it well and completely, then move on to the next task. You’re running a business so, sure, you sometimes may have to tackle several different issues at once. If it starts to become a habit, though, step back and consider if someone could do some of what you’re doing – which leads us to the next issue.

You Don’t Trust Others

If you have assistants to help you with your business, or partners with whom you work side by side, it will become necessary to rely on their opinions and capabilities at times. This is where trust is important. Don’t try to micro-manage those who are attempting to help you. If you’re not going to trust your staff, your business partners or your vendors, then why are you even working with them?

You Believe You’re in Charge of Everything

Trying to be the straw that stirs the drink in everything you do is a recipe for failure. Realize that others have talents and special skills that are valuable to you. Instead of being competitive with them and trying to emphasize your place as the irreplaceable source, concentrate on the areas where you truly excel and leave some of the remaining work for others. There is room for more than one smart person. If you worry about controlling everything, burnout won’t be far behind.

You Hate Chaos

Try as you might, there’s nothing you can do about the world being a disorganized mess at times. This being the case, it’s important to accept

the hitches in your plan. Rather than becoming upset or panicky, relax and address the challenges, one at a time. You don’t have to be Ms. or Mr. Perfect; everyone has a few unresolved issues during the course of a business day. When you don’t overreact, you eventually figure out a workable solution.

If you have one, your Inner Control Freak will never really leave you. But you can control it and channel its powerful energy in positive ways. Practice flexibility in your life, and that burning desire for control will prove to be less of a liability and more of an asset.

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