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Control and Influence

Control and influence are power dynamics that most people want, but few people understand. Your span of control doesn't go beyond your attitude, words, actions, and how you spend your time. If you consistently focus on those things that are within your control, your ability to positively influence things that are not within your control increase but are never guaranteed.

I have worked with a lot of really smart people who have made themselves miserable because they falsely believe and work toward gaining control over things they will never control or change. This is a waste of time and sets one up for failure, frustration, general unhappiness.

Even when you have positional authority, you can attempt to coerce people, but you never control them. Influence is given to us by people who trust our actions and motivations to do the right things and do what we say we will do when we say we will do it. Authority without influence is a very tenuous thing.

Understand and focus on your span of control and stop wasting time and energy chasing shadows.

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