041: How to Let Go of Control – with Jennifer Dukes Lee

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Raise your hand if you consider yourself a card-carrying Type A control freak.

Don’t worry, no one is looking, I promise.

How can you tell? Inc. magazine suggests 8 Signs You’re a Control Freak.

Here are the first 4:

  1. You believe that if someone would change one or two things about themselves, you’d be happier. So you try to “help them” change this behavior by pointing it out, usually over and over.
  2. You micromanage others to make them fit your (often unrealistic) expectations. You don’t believe in imperfection and you don’t think anyone else should either.
  3. You judge others’ behavior as right or wrong and passive-aggressively withhold attention until they fall in line with your expectations. Sitting in silent judgment is a master form of control.
  4. You offer “constructive criticism” as a veiled attempt to advance your own agenda.

Any of this sound familiar? (Harsh, right!!?!)

My guest, Jennifer Dukes Lee, shares simple, practical tips to help you learn how to let go of control.

Jennifer Dukes Lee is the author of It’s All Under Control: A Journey of Letting Go, Hanging On, and Finding a Peace You Almost Forgot Was Possible and other books.

In this episode, you will learn:

  • What is underneath the illusion of control and what causes us to crave it
  • What happens to us if we DON’T change, but continue attempting to carry everything in our work and life
  • When to say “NO” and discover the “Delegate, Dismiss, or Do” framework
  • What type of control freak are you – Driver, Devoter or Darling, and what to do about it
  • What it means to live a ‘surrendered life’

Plus, Jennifer shares a few simple tips for overcoming the overwhelm during the winter holidays. (Lord knows, we could all use this!)

My children gifted me her book for my birthday earlier this year. (Jeez, what are they trying to tell me!!?!) I committed to read a little bit every night before bed, instead of scrolling on my phone. I absolutely adore this book and know you will too. Witty, down-to-earth and my kind of gal, so enjoy!

#DoTheThing.

My challenge for you this week:

Take some time to make note of what you keep tight control of. Can you loosen your grip and let go a little? Keep a journal to monitor your progress, and remember to be kind to yourself – life is a journey.

Share it with me, privately or publicly, by snapping a photo of you doing the thing and tag @thesimplifiers on Instagram for added accountability and support!

Links, books and apps mentioned:

Podcast: How to Use Mind-Body Magic to Create Flow – The Simplifiers Podcast with special guest, Abigail Steidley

Book: Cozy Minimalist Home – Myquillyn Smith

Book: It’s All Under Control: A Journey of Letting Go, Hanging On, and Finding a Peace You Almost Forgot Was Possible – Jennifer Dukes Lee

Book: The Happiness Dare: Pursuing Your Heart’s Deepest, Holiest, and Most Vulnerable Desire – Jennifer Dukes Lee

Book: Love Idol: Letting Go of Your Need for Approval–and Seeing Yourself through God’s Eyes – Jennifer Dukes Lee

Favorite quotes from this episode:

[03:29] “I think that there is such an illusion behind control because we think, oh, well if I’m in control then I got all my ducks in a row and nothing is going to stop me.” – Mary

[03:51] “We think that if we have all the systems in place that everything will go very smoothly. And I think too, we’ve been trained that way from an early age in, at least in the culture where I live in, where self-sufficiency is highly regarded.” – Jennifer

[11:28] “Sometimes we go through these moments where we think we’ve got the outward appearance, everything’s fine, everything’s dandy, but deep down inside there’s either a missing part or there’s just an emptiness that is deeper.” – Jennifer

[23:20] “If there’s something that anybody listening today could do right now, is set just one core boundary or core value, some line that you are going to refuse to cross.” – Jennifer

[28:39] “For me, surrendered life looks like figuring out how to balance what to hang onto, and what to let go of. And that’s a constant evaluation and re-evaluation with God.” – Jennifer

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It’s time to SIMPLIFY.

About Jennifer:

Jennifer is the wife of an Iowa farmer, mom to two girls, and author of It’s All Under Control: A Journey of Letting Go, Hanging On, and Finding a Peace You Almost Forgot Was Possible. She was a newspaper reporter for many years before she started writing books.

Jennifer loves ’80s music, and she exercises mostly because she wants to support her queso habit.

Jesus saved her life once upon a time, and he has been doing it every single day since then. That’s why she writes: because of Jesus. She wants to testify to his faithfulness and to make his great name known.

Jennifer’s vote for the perfect guest on The Simplifiers Podcast:

Crystal Paine – wife, mom of 3, speaker, author, and online entrepreneur, best known for founding MoneySavingMom.com, as well as YourBloggingMentor.com and The Crystal Paine Show.

Where Jennifer hangs out online:

Facebook: @JenniferDukesLee

Website: jenniferdukeslee.com

Instagram: @dukeslee

Video version of the episode

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