Watch the full training HERE.

It can be tough to know when you’re being too controlling in your relationships, especially if you don’t have a lot of experience with healthy boundaries.

When you’re trying to set better boundaries, it can be easy to cross the line into controlling behavior. You may not even realize that you’re doing it.

In this video training, I talk about what controlling behavior looks like and ways to let go of it.

1. We control because we’re scared.

Being controlling is a behavior we learned to do as a stay against fear. 

Maybe our childhood was chaotic, or maybe it’s chaotic inside. 

Control is the mechanism that was developed to handle that and to survive, so there’s no shame in it. 

Accept it. Understand it. Have compassion for yourself.

If your need to control is having a negative effect on your relationships, choose to create some new wiring by taking new actions.

2. We’re controlling when we create rules and conditions instead of having healthy boundaries

A boundary, as Mark Graves said so beautifully, “Walls keep people out. Boundaries show people where the door is.” 

A boundary allows you to open and love someone and let them in. 

Rules and conditions tend to arise out of fear. There’s a tightening, a grip. 

This might be something you feel more energetically than overtly, so I’m asking you to tune in here and be a bit sensitive to where you’re coming from.

3. Anytime you’re acting out of fear instead of desire, you’re probably trying to control

Have compassion for yourself. It’s okay that you have fear. It’s allowed to be here but it doesn’t get to drive the car, i.e. control your life and everyone in it.

4. Get clear on what your fear is, be kind to yourself about it, and then ask what desire is under the fear

First recognize that there’s fear operating under your desire to control the situation and get clear on what it is. 

Then drop under the fear and ask, “What is my true desire here that’s under this fear? What do I really want?”

5. Ask vulnerably for what you want

Instead of imposing rules, it’s going to feel pretty scary at first to ask vulnerably for what you want. 

You might sweat a ton the first few times you do this, but it does get easier.

6. Remember the difference between a request and a demand

When a person feels free to say yes or no, then you successfully made a request (yay!). 

When the person starts contracting and feels like they have to say yes or else they’ll be punished in some way, then that’s a demand.

A demand will likely be experienced by them as control.

I suggest you develop clear communication with the people who you’re close to, so that if you’re asking for something and they’re contracting you can both get curious and be open about what’s happening. 

Ask if it landed like a demand. If so, try it again once you can actually make a request.

Now, maybe they’re contracting because they’re a people pleaser and they have a hard time saying no. In that case, it’s not even about you. 

You might have made a request and they contracted because they’re like, “I don’t want to do this, but I can’t say no.” 

Reassure them that it’s okay to say no and encourage them to practice doing so.

But in case it was a demand, your first check-in is going to be, “Was that a demand? Was there any energetic transmission from me that yes was the only acceptable answer here?”

Because if that’s the case then it’s your work to clean that up.

7. It all has to do with your state

Are you tight, anxious, or afraid? 

If so, what you might be trying to do may come across as controlling and you might actually be trying to control because you’re reacting to your fear. 

Practice self-regulation so that you can be in a more centered state when you have requests you want to make.

8. Let them do things their way

If the person you’re trying to control likes to do things differently than you, but the things still get done and the way they’re doing them doesn’t create harm, practice letting it happen their way.

Sit in the discomfort of refraining from control. 

The only way to retrain an overly controlling nature is to get comfortable in discomfort and letting things unfold in different ways than you expect.

If you need to learn how to be more self-regulated and able to let go of control, reach out to me.

One of the things I do is to teach people how to befriend their nervous systems so they can be more connectable, expansive, open, kind, and free in their relationships.

Watch the full training HERE.

The relationship you desire is possible! If you’re partnered, click HERE to discover what missing pieces are stopping you from having the connection and passion you desire.

If you’re single and/or dating, click HERE to to take an honest look at where you are now and where you need to grow in order to attract the love you want.