• Patrick McAndrew

Take Back Control

Are you controlling your life or is your life controlling you?  Studies have shown that there is a direct correlation between happiness and the amount of control we feel we have over our lives.  The more in control we feel, the happier we tend to be.  The less control we feel we have, we tend to be less happy.  So how do we gain more control?

We can’t control our past.  We can’t control where we came from.  We can’t control who we grew up with.  Many people have grown up in healthy and wealthy families and have ended up in not-so-happy adulthoods.  Likewise, many people have grown up in the worst of situations, the lowest of the low, and have become some of the most prosperous and influential people the world has ever seen.

How do we take control of our lives?  How do we seize moments?  How do we rise to where we want to be in life?  Let me introduce you all to my friend Self-Discipline!

To gain control over our lives, we must develop self-discipline.  We must do the things we don’t want to do in order to do the things we want to do.  And what forms a solid self-discipline?  Habits.

It’s super easy to fall into bad habits.  Insanely easy!  This is because habits are little behaviors.  If we do something that we know isn’t very productive or isn’t going to push us forward, we indulge any way because it’s little.  Indulging is alright from time to time.  I love cookies and having one every now and then won’t kill me.  But if I spend endless hours eating cookies, I’m going to die.  And that is bad news bears.

Brushing our teeth is a habit.  Cleaning the dishes and taking out the trash when its full are habits.  Working out is a habit.  Reading and studying regularly are habits.  Drinking and smoking are habits.  NOT working out is a habit.  Eating healthy is a habit.  Eating Unhealthy is a habit.  Checking your phone while in the company of loved ones is a habit.  Being kind is a habit.  Being a poophead is a habit.   Showing gratitude is a habit.  Being envious and angry is also a habit.

All of these habits, whether good or bad, add up.  What we want to do is add up the good habits and subtract the bad.  If we add up the bad, it will subtract A LOT from our lives.  This concept is so simple, and yet so very difficult to execute.  Good habits develop good self-discipline which develops control over your life which leads to never-ending happiness.  Happiness is not a destination, but an ongoing pursuit.

There is this great quote that goes: “Good habits are hard to form and easy to live with. Bad habits are easy to form and hard to live with.  If we don’t consciously form good habits, we will unconsciously form bad ones.”  We must keep this mind as we strive to take control over our own lives.

I will leave you with a great riddle, though you will likely know the answer based on this post today:


I am your constant companion.

I am your greatest helper or heaviest burden.

I will push you onward or drag you down to failure.

I am completely at your command.

Half the things you do you might just as well turn over to me, and I will be able to do them quickly, correctly.

I am easily managed – you must merely be firm with me. Show me exactly how you want something done, and after a few lessons I will do it automatically.

I am the servant of all great people; and alas, of all failures as well. Those who are failures, I have made failures.

I am not a machine, though I work with all the precision of a machine plus the intelligence of a human being.

You may run me for a profit or turn me for ruin – it makes no difference to me.

Take me, train me, be firm with me, and I will place the world at your feet.

Be easy with me and I will destroy you.

Who am I?


Let me know your thoughts on this concept below!

Your friend,


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