For her, control freaks believe that they are helping others with their “constructive criticism” or taking over a project because “no one else will do it right.” They don’t see their controlling behaviors as symptoms of what’s really going on – their own anxiety has run a muck.
Here are her 8 control freak signs:
- You believe that if someone would change one or two things about themselves, you’d be happier. So you try to “help them” change this behavior by pointing it out, usually over and over.
- You micromanage others to make them fit your (often unrealistic) expectations. You don’t believe in imperfection and you don’t think anyone else should either.
- You judge others’ behavior as right or wrong and passive-aggressively withhold attention until they fall in line with your expectations. Sitting in silent judgment is a master form of control.
- You offer “constructive criticism” as a veiled attempt to advance your own agenda.
- You change who you are or what you believe so that someone will accept you. Instead of just being yourself, you attempt to incept others by managing their impression of you.
- You present worst-case scenarios in an attempt to influence someone away from certain behaviors and toward others. This is also called fear mongering.
- You have a hard time with ambiguity and being OK with not knowing something.
- You intervene on behalf of people by trying to explain or dismiss their behaviors to others.
Although it is common to see leaders that think that the only way to get ahead is by controlling everything, it is unrealistic. Prevost mentions few steps for recovery. Your happiness cannot be tied up to the behavior of another person, because then you make someone else responsible for how you feel. You can control yourself, that’s it. You are responsible for you, that’s all. Better relationships with others depend on you, says Prevost. Furthermore, here are few ideas to become a better you:
- Be vulnerable with people.
- Never compromise your self-respect by altering your core beliefs.
- Be realistic about your expectations of others.
- Quit the passive-aggressive nonsense–be direct.
- Accept that a large portion of life is laced with unknowns.
- Embrace confrontation–it really is sometimes the only thing you can do.
- Take responsibility for your own happiness.