For the past year I’ve been a part of a wellness program called iStrive. It’s a three part program rooted in nutrition, mental health, and physical well being. I was referred to iStrive by my orthopedic doctor. I had visited him for some pain in my right hip and after some evaluation and discussion about physical therapy, he got right down to it.
Me: “I’d prefer the physical therapy. You can give me the shot, but it’s not like I’m a marathon runner who needs to get back to training ASAP.”
Him: “Why not? More specifically, why do you say you’re not? And why can’t you be?”
Well that certainly got me thinking. Why couldn’t I be a marathon runner? What was telling me I couldn’t?
For starters I weighed 221 pounds. Marathon runners don’t look like me. Which was this:
I had minimal athletic ability. I couldn’t run more than five minutes without huffing and puffing. But why not? What or who was stopping me? No one but myself.
So my doctor gave me the info, and a year later here I am. I’ve lost over 50 pounds, I’ve run an 8k, and I’m in the best shape of my life.
What does all of this have to do with the Circle of Control? During the time in my program I spent a lot of time working on the mental part of wellness. One of the biggest things that I’ve had to learn and accept is there are things I can control and there are things I can’t. Here’s a picture:
That’s the circle of control. (Or Circle of Concern as some people know it). The basic principle is the inner circle is your Circle of Influence while the outer circle is your Circle of Concern. The theory is that the more you focus on your Circle of Influence, those things you can control or change, the larger your Circle of Influence becomes and the smaller your Circle of Concern becomes. If you focus more on those things you cannot control or change, your Circle of Concern becomes larger and your Circle of Influence shrinks. This means you’re spending more time worrying about those things which cannot change and not focusing enough on those that can.
Now’s the time I have to sit down a focus on those things I can influence. Here’s a list:
I have to let go of the things I cannot change or influence. More specifically I need to let go of all my worrying about the things I cannot change. I’m not going to list those because that’s just giving them more power over my thoughts.
My hope is that by living each day focusing on my Circle of Influence, my Circle of Concern will shrink. Starting today.