Locus of Control Health Hub
Posted by Kimber Harding
December 29, 2017
2 Comments | Leave a comment
The New Year brings about a time of
many reflections. One of the most important one, is looking inwardly at self-reflection
and ask yourself, “Am I in control of my life?” There are two ways to answer
this question based on learned personality traits that has to do with your
“Locus of Control” and psychological well-being. Psychologist Philip Zimbardo
explains it as, “A locus
of control is a belief about whether the outcomes of our actions are contingent
on what we do (internal locus of control) or on events outside our personal
control (external locus of control)”.
Studies show that those with an Internal
Locus of Control, tend to be happier and more confident, physically healthier,
more successful and most likely to take responsibility for their actions. Those
with an External Locus of Control don’t believe they can change their
circumstances through their own efforts, may feel like a victim, and frequently
feel hopeless and powerless. Many stressors in life are largely beyond our control, but we can cope with these things
by adjusting how we view them.
Exercises to develop Internal Locus of Control and
- Control what you can…. and let go of what
you can’t. Trying to control something you can’t will only lead to stress
and frustration. Focus on those things that are productive and
controllable, such as your own thoughts and actions.
- Put great effort into
Instead of feeling helpless about the state of the world or your life
circumstances, remember that you can make one person’s day better by
putting a smile on their face. The little things often have a snowball
effect and turn into big changes.
- Remember your life is
We all experience unexpected things in life that may or may not be in our
control. You have the power to take responsibility for your choices and
your reactions to events. You can choose to direct the path of your life
- What doesn’t kill you
makes you stronger. This is an accurate statement. Both positive and
negative life experiences shape who we are. If you reflect on the wisdom
you have gained and new understandings or skills because of them, then
they can help us become better people, if we allow it.
- Focus on
For us to be our best possible selves, it is important to look at ourselves
objectively and without judgement. Shake off the feelings of victim,
martyr, need for petty authority over others, etc. that are limiting your
personal growth as a person. This allows us to focus on our individual
strengths to utilize for positive change, and weaknesses in order to
develop skills we may be lacking.
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