Wednesday Wisdom - Defining What You Control - StrongLife

Wednesday Wisdom – Defining What You Control


It’s Wednesday and I’m about to deliver some wisdom for you.

I don’t really go into the whole “motivational” aspect too much.

However, I am a big fan of self help books, philosophy and creating a better outlook on life.

Sigh, I sound like such a knob.

Anyways, one area that has had a huge benefit is “defining what you have control over”.

Here’s a quote by Epictetus:

“The chief task in life is simply this: to identify and separate matters so that I can say clearly to myself which are externals not under my control, and which have to do with the choices I actually control.

Where then do I look for good and evil? Not to uncontrollable externals, but within myself to the choices that are my own” 

So to put this simply, we need to spend less time worrying about things that are completely out of our control.

Instead, we must focus on the areas and situations that we DO have control over.

One of the biggest things us Irish cling to and let dictate us is the feckin WEATHER!

But no matter whether it is rain, hail or full scale apocalypse outside, you still have to get up, put on your clothes and get on with life.

Yet, so many choose to allow weather to dictate how they feel.

We allow it to stop us enjoying life.

Jaysus, sure don’t we check the weather 5 times a day and then go mental when they get it wrong!

In all fairness, if rain makes you feel miserable and stops you doing fun stuff, then you need to move to another country.

It’s also a reason why I haven’t watched the news in over 5 years. No joke!

When was the last time you turned on the news and they said “Great news today, wait until I tell you the craic that went on!”.


Instead, it’s generally all misery, negative situations in the world.

But 99% of these situations are completely out of our control.

Yet we allow them to manifest in our minds and dictate how we feel about the world.

Yes, we should empathise in these scenarios, but we must also be able to differentiate from what is out of our control and what is within.

Because we cannot change anything outside of our control.

What Control To Focus On

But we have 100% Power to change our own lives if we focus on what is within.

We can build a happy, healthy and great life for ourselves when we do so.

When it comes to health and fitness, we have 100% power over exercising regularly, choosing what goes on our dinner plates and we can choose whether to sit on the couch or go exploring the world.

We can focus on creating a healthier, fitter and happier mind and body.

But we cannot control the others around us.

So let’s not focus on what other people are doing in the gym, in work, in life, and let’s focus on ourselves.

When you begin to focus less on what you cannot control, and more on what you can, you will realise how much more peace of mind you achieve.

Don’t allow the externals to dictate your thoughts and emotions.

Hope this makes sense.


Colm Duignan

Colm Duignan

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