Are You a Controller?

Many, if not most, controllers have little inkling about how much, how often, and in which ways they try to control people and things. They can spot it in others, but not in themselves. (Try to control a controller, and you will see what I mean.) Quite a few, in fact, will deny they are controllers, so deeply ingrained are their control patterns.

Are you a controller? Are you sure? Well, let’s find out. Answer these questions as truthfully as you can. Do you believe that:

  • Searching for the “right” person will help you find the person that is right for you?
  • Helping to remove your loved one’s clutter will result in him or her being neater?
  • Insisting that your daughter study for her exams without playing loud music will result in her getting better grades?
  • Pressuring your 12 year old son to be more aggressive on the soccer field will result in his playing more aggressively?
  • Your way of doing things is usually the best way?
  • It’s too risky to let things play out by themselves?
  • Harping at your husband about his excessive drinking will make him drink less?
  • You usually know what’s best for your mate?
  • Working hard to improve an art piece will make it better?
  • Telling your sister that she should eat healthier food will result in her changing her diet?
  • Admonishing another’s rude behavior will make him or her act nicer?
  • Suggesting more than once that your friend should be more discriminating will increase the chances he or she will be so?
  • Pressuring your sales force to produce more will result in greater sales?
  • Repeatedly suggesting to a friend that she should ask her boss for a raise will result in her asking for one?
  • Telling your teammates how they should play will improve your chances of winning?
  • Telling your son how he should run his business will result in his following your advice?
  • Perfection is an admirable goal?
  • Telling your golf partner that he needs to relax more when hitting his iron shots will result in his making better shots?

A predisposition to answer “yes” to more than a few of these questions is a good indication that you are a controller. Now, here’s another question for you: Even if you don’t believe these things, do you still do them?