Sunday, February 24, 2013

Jesus Handled Controlling People: How Can You?

It is a hard, clear blue sky this afternoon in Judea when Jesus speaks. The crowds come. And come, from villages all around. They press in. Pushing closer, to hear his words. His disciples with him, Jesus preaches, his voice penetrating the desert air, reaching the hearts open to his word.

But someone interrupts him, to say that his family has arrived. They wish to speak with him, but are unable to get through the densely packed crowds to his side.

What is Jesus’ response? He says his family are those all about him, not limited by birth. Jesus refuses to let his family presume upon him and his mission (Matthew 12:46-50).
Jesus Preaching

What Is The Controlling Personality Pattern?

Jesus uses the Assertion compass point to withstand the Controlling Pattern. The Self Compass shows how the Controller pattern exaggerates a sense of competence. Without humility from the Weakness compass point, Controllers consider any opinion of theirs as the right opinion. Other people benefit when told how to think and act. It's only being helpful. 

Unknowingly, Controllers labor under the heavy burden of perfectionism, sometimes called the “tyranny of the shoulds.” Even though it’s impossible to achieve perfection, they're always striving to do so.  This curse of perfectionism yields bitter fruit. It isolates the person and torments others. Without caring from the Love compass point, the Controller pattern drives out joy, replacing it with a certain dictatorial grimness. It keeps Controllers from nurturing, forgiving, or having much fun. 

Compulsive Controller Personality Disorder

“They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear," Jesus says, "and lay them on the shoulders of others; but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them” (Matthew 23:4).

How It Feels To Be Around Controlling People

Someone living with the Controller pattern can feel this way:
  • My spouse has the answers.
  • My job is to obey all my spouse’s correctives because I’m incompetent. At times, I feel downright stupid.
  • I want to act like a child, blow my stack. Pout.
  • Which brings on the imperious censure even more full throttle.
  • I feel demeaned. Deflated.
  • I am an adult, yet constantly judged for my driving capability, for my grammar, for the way I give our child a bath, fill a dishwasher, make a bed.
  • Somewhere there is fury.
  • Certainly shame. 
Person Feeling Judged

Ways to Counter The Controlling Pattern

1. At home, calmly speak about how you feel, making full use of your Self Compass tools of caring assertion and humble confidence
"I feel like I can't do anything right these days. That doesn't feel good. It feels kind of grim to be around you. Not much fun."
2. Suggest ways that would work for you: 
"It would help me if you can you go more easy with your comments, maybe throw in a few compliments here and there?"
3. At work, use diplomatic assertion with a compulsive perfectionist boss:
"Yes, for sure I'm as keen as you are for me to turn in a topnotch Year End report. In order to do that, however, I will still need to turn it in tomorrow as we had previously agreed, rather than today as you're asking."

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