When people talk to me about dominance and “controlling others,” I say I’m not that kind of dominant.
I don’t control others.
I don’t want to control others.
I don’t believe I can control others.
I like to think I inspire those I have relationships with, and their feedback implies I do passingly well.
In my Behavior Modification classes, I teach that “We cannot control others. We can only control ourselves, and that imperfectly.”
Similarly, we cannot control our results, no matter how well we control ourselves. We can learn from them. We can learn to inspire others or create situations to get better results, or results more closely to what we are looking for…
But we cannot control results.
And this matters.
It matters in kink, when we live our power exchange.
It matters when we judge ourselves on results of effort.
It matters when we set goals or create New Year’s Resolutions.
We cannot be sure that we will lose 50 pounds in three months, no matter how hard we work. So many factors are outside of our control.
We can be sure that we choose the healthiest options when we eat and that we get in exercise 3 times per week, or whatever goals we set within our control.
We cannot control whether we will find the love of our life in the next 52 weeks.
We can control whether we make an effort to meet more new people, go to interesting events, perhaps take a chance on people that we may have disregarded at other times, or to ask more people out than we did the year before.
There is not way to be sure that by the end of 2019 I will be a chef-quality cook. I probably won’t, actually.
But for the last month I’ve been cooking at home more and more creatively. I’ve been trying new techniques, and focusing more of my free time on understanding the foundations of food better. I plan to continue that through 2019 (and Pet got me a year-long all-access Masterclass.com pass, so Thomas Keller, Chef Ramsey, Wolfgang Puck and Alice Waters will be assisting), and to explore food both more widely and more deeply than I ever have before.
And I know I’ll be a better person for it.
And as an aside, I’ve been watching Thomas Keller, one of the world’s most well-regarded chefs, and he makes mistakes, too. His Parmesan crisp cooled a bit too much, and he broke it. His pasta dried a bit too much and it cracked in a few places when he cut his noodles.
He has a great deal of control, because he has practiced his skills, and made a master of himself, and even he cannot control what he cannot control.
He does make the best of it, though.