Taking Control

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These are uncertain times. Kenny is losing weight.

Whenever the economy starts wreaking havoc on his world, Kenny starts losing weight. It’s not because he’s worried and can’t eat. It’s one of his ways to take control.

The odds are that you can’t do anything about the economy. Your company and industry will go their way without consulting you. The coronavirus will rage or not. “Experts” will tell conflicting tales of what’s happening. That’s when I remember the key line from William Goldman’s Adventures in the Screen Trade. “Nobody knows anything.” It’s easy to begin to feel that things are out of control.

When that happens, take control of things you can control. That’s what the Stoics did. That’s what Kenny does.

Exercise and Eat Right

Kenny starts exercising again and pays attention to what he eats. That’s why he loses weight. But there are other benefits, too. Exercise is a stressbuster. The diet and exercise program give him more energy. And he feels more in control of his world. Paying attention to exercise and diet can do the same for you. Here are some other things you can do to feel more in control.

Get Enough Good Sleep

Get enough sleep. Set a regular schedule for going to bed. Make sure the room is dark and quiet and cool. Sleep is the time when your body and brain re-charge. People who get enough sleep handle stress better. They make better decisions, too.

Relationships Sustain Us

Connect with people who love you. Relationships are the best source of support there is. Make time to get together with friends and family. Talk with them on the phone. Contact an old friend and catch up. Social media makes this easy.

Do Something Positive

Do something to move your life forward. It doesn’t have to be big. Send out a few resumes. Follow up on some leads. Read a professional article. It doesn’t need to be much, just a little progress every day.

An economic downturn is the universe telling you to do what you should have been doing anyway. Paying attention to exercise, diet, and sleep is a good thing all the time. Enriching relationships and moving your life and career ahead are good anytime. But when the world is turbulent and out of control, those things pay special dividends. They help you take control of parts of your life and set yourself up for success.


Exercise. It’s something you can control and a stressbuster.

Eat right. You can control what you eat and how much.

Get enough good sleep. When you get enough sleep, you’re fresh and flexible when you need to be.

Spend time with the people who love you. Relationships sustain us in tough times.

Make a little progress every day.

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