Where is the remote control?

“He who controls the remote, controls the world.” – Julie Garwood

This is a normal scene in any household – the fight for television’s remote control! Every member wants to watch her/his favorite show and uncannily everyone’s favorite show is at the same time!

I remember my father wanting to watch the 9:00 pm News and my mother wanting to watch an on-going family saga series at the same time. Invariably, my mother won because we as children also wanted to watch anything but the news!

The remote control literally controlled everybody’s choices and played up to their whims. With one switch we would be transported either to the world of mythology or the drama of a family or the grim news of the world. Our wish and our desire ruled!

The remote control to your life

What if the device that we need to operate was our mind? Imagine your mind to be your remote control that you can use to control our thoughts and emotions. What would change?

According to Wikipedia, ‘a remote control can allow operation of devices that are out of convenient reach for direct operation of controls.’

With that powerful remote you can change the way you look and perceive situations. That team project that did not go well. The altercation with your sibling. Or missing deadlines. You would be able to understand your feelings and emotions better. You would be mindful of the triggers that sets you off, realise what upsets you the most and be capable of changing your reactions.

Imagine being caught in an unpleasant situation that leaves you upset, angry, and all flustered. You are just a step away from blowing your top. Now press that ‘off’ switch on the remote control that is your mind. What happens?

The negativity is likely to get dissipated. Your breathing may slow down. Your mind may become calmer. Your body will respond by relaxing and letting go of that emotion and that moment. That is because the mind and body are interconnected. What impacts your mind has a distinct effect on your body. For instance, when I allow stresses to engulf me, my neck tightens, and it does not take long for a spondylitis attack to occur.

Be the master of your own life

Everything can change because you own the remote control to your life. That realisation itself is the first step towards taking charge of your own life.

#Pay attention to your body

Your body responds to the way you act, feel, and react. Every time you get angry, notice how your body reacts. Write that down and you will see the pattern. Awareness if the first step.

#Be with your emotions

Surprisingly, many people are not able to understand their emotions. Human beings have a tendency to get stuck in thought patterns. Emotions go deeper and shape our lives. For example, when things don’t go as planned (an expected promotion that did not happen or that job interview that did not fructify), we stay with regret. And allow our mind to be swamped with all negative thoughts. But what if you were to use that moment of regret to instead reflect on what can be done better next time? The moment you change your emotions or use your emotions for a better outcome, things change!

#Practice gratitude

What if you were to pause for a moment and express gratitude for all the things that are going well? It is very easy to allow yourself to get lost in the maze of crippling thoughts. Everything can turn dark in such moments. And you can get overwhelmed with just what is happening around you. Talk to yourself the way you would talk to a friend and recollect the good things present in your life.

There is never going to be that perfect life when everything is just right, feels right, and is going to stay right. The good news is that you can control how you feel and use your mind’s remote control to give your life the direction you want.

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Sarita Bahl
Sarita Bahl is an alumnus of Tata Institute of Social Sciences and the Swedish Institute of Management Program. An experienced and versatile leader, she comes with nearly four decades of professional experience. She has over the years successfully overseen the communications and public affairs function and led the corporate social responsibility strategy for Bayer South Asia, Pfizer, and Monsanto, among others. Sarita has held multiple roles across diverse industries, the public sector, trade associations, MNCs, and the not-for-profit sector. Her areas of interest include advocacy, stakeholder engagement, sustainability, and communications.

As an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) from the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and Senior Practitioner (Mentoring) from the European Council of Mentoring and Coaching (EMCC), Sarita specializes in career transition, inner engineering and life issues. Sarita enjoys writing and is passionate about animals, books, and movies.

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