The challenge of relinquishing control

I put my hand up as a control freak. I’ve been in denial for a while, but I’ve been realising it more and more over the past few months. I’m also coming to realise that it is like trying to drive with a handbrake on. I still tell myself I’m cool and roll with the punches, but in reality I’m noticing more and more that I’m still exercising control in other ways in those situations.

This became particularly apparent to me this week when learning to drive a manual car and motorbike.
Part of it (as most of the world knows) is that as you engage first gear the vehicle begins to move.. you can’t just start it and then slowly accelerate when you’re ready. You need to just get onboard with it. I’ve been on the farm for a week and I’m only just getting the hang of it. I know what to do, I’ve been told over and over with lots of heavy sighs, but I needed to go off on my own and practice it.
I’m slowly getting there.
Sometimes with the clutch engaged you roll forwards, sometimes you roll backwards, sometimes you just sit still.
But the weight of the vehicle is in control, not you (much).
It’s quite an adjustment from my easy auto car.

I’ve started to notice this in other areas of my life too – my previous jobs, distancing myself from family (by moving across the country), distancing myself from existing friends, and new friends (by never allowing myself to build strong connections with those nearby), and in so many other ways.

By coming to the farm in Queensland I’m starting to relinquish control by fully engaging myself in farm life, close to good friends, with a bunch of hard-to-operate vehicles and headstrong animals… and all that that entails. (like wrangling cheeky calves, below)

It has also allowed me to recognise the same severe need in others, and help them come along on my journey, on their own terms.

Loosening my hold on control is something I need to work on.

First step – master the manual car.

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