Cambrian: Opinion

Lose control and be in control of your well-being

Do you ever have those days where you just wake up whining? Granted, there are plenty of reasons to do so, but generally I try to begin on the sunny side of the street. The other morning, I was obviously crossing against traffic or something.

Feeling somewhat overwhelmed, frustrated, just out of sorts, I tried to redirect my emotions. For me that meant writing a silly poem:

Should your shoulders begin to bend

Under life’s many burdens

Go outside

For Nature inhales pain and suffering

And exhales flowers and birds

When sorrow sets its course for the

Furrowed creases of your eyes

An ocean breeze is

The perfect kerchief on which to dry them

And send your dampened spirits soaring

When your footsteps have circled you into

A hurricane of drama and stress

Be a tree

Root your feet solidly in the soil and

Ground yourself in the earth’s boundless energy

Sing life’s praises with rainbows and moonlight

Rise with the dawn to bear witness

To the reawakening

To the beginning-again that the new day offers

Lighting your way to the nectar amid the mundane and melancholic

I mean really, who these days under 50 even knows what a kerchief is? But, it made me feel better. I went outside. Trying to overcome my swim in the pity pot, I tried to be productive and do yard work in preparation for my annual summer party. “Productivity” is a good thing, right?

You know the giant green waste cans that clearly state “Don’t even think of trying to push this while the lid is open as unbearable pain and suffering may occur?”

“But I’ve always done it this way! I am in control here!”

Fwop went the can forward, the lid backward and out upon it I stepped and fell, wrenching my back and catching my thumb between the handle, the lid and the ground.

“See, I told you,” the can smirked.

Control. I believe that is what this mood is all about.

“I’ve always done it myself.”

“If you want it done the way you want it, do it yourself.”

“I am capable. I have to prove that to myself!”

“What up wid dat?” my 23-year old son will tell me.

Sigh. Of course he’s right (he religiously complained about my pickiness for years).

So, while I was just noticing these same signals in a client’s body (“You’re defying gravity … you have permission to do nothing, to let that arm down.”). I started reframing my own control issues. Always easier said than done. But, here are my thoughts.

Realize that it is not so much about letting go of control — to ask for help around the house, to truly accept a massage to relieve stress and pain, to accept offers of what-ever-it-may-be from friends and family. Rather, it is honestly being in control of your well-being. If your intuition, your gut, doesn’t signal that there is imminent bodily danger associated with said help, re-evaluate and confirm it is just your stubborn nature standing in the way of a better, more worthwhile life.

Why do we always choose to suffer so? Because, if we never feel there is anything amiss, we may get eaten by that saber-toothed tiger. Our lizard brain says we may get hurt if we are not always on guard. Unfortunately, that part of our system has not evolved to current standards of living, so we needlessly stay harried.

So, let go, trade, reconsider, re-evaluate what you really need to do, to get, to become, to bestow, to … be … to be really happy.

“Pain is inevitable; suffering is optional” I read. I believe I need to sit in the yard (the first step in letting go is “earthing,” getting grounded, so you are coming from a firm, secure place), make my list of priorities for the day, week, month then … we’ll see.

Dianne Brooke’s column is special to The Cambrian. Email her at, or visit her website at