Many years ago I knew a lady, who struggled enormously with depression and took a lot of medication. On top of that she started her day with a few alcoholic drinks to get her going! Oh, and her marriage was in a mess as well. To be honest I didn’t think her depression would ever lift given the circumstances.
I lost contact with her and then quite a few years later, we crossed paths again. She was so excited. “My depression is gone and I haven’t taken medication for a few years now”. I wondered if she’d got divorced, and that’s why she felt so much better. As if reading my thoughts she continued ‘Oh, and my marriage has also come right and I’m now happily married!’
This all seemed too good to be true so all I could do was ask her how this incredible transformation had come about. These were her words: ‘I decided to stop trying to change my husband and to rather accept him exactly as he is.’ I was truly amazed. She had changed her goal into a desire and that is what had made all the difference!
Goals versus Desires
This lady had made it her life goal to change her husband. This type of goal is doomed to failure as we can’t change another person. It really is outside our control. A goal like this needs to be changed into a desire. The thinking needs to change to something like ‘It would be great if …. happened, but actually it’s outside of my control. A person only changes if they want to do it themselves. It’s not my responsibility. My responsibility is to love and accept that person as they are!’
For this lady, this type of mental change, improved her marriage and helped her overcome depression as well. As she gave up control, her husband felt more accepted and loved, and in turn he became more loving and less critical. Her decision had a positive spiral effect!
Ask yourself if you have goals that are outside of your control. If you do, change these to desires and let go of the urge to control and then see what happens!