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  • Writer's pictureJeff Butorac

What We Can Control

There are only two things we have absolute control over: our thoughts and our actions in the moment. We may be able to influence other outcomes, but we can only fully control those two things, nothing else.


You have control of what goes on in your head. That doesn’t mean you won’t have thoughts that are negative, but you choose if or how long those thoughts stay in your mind. With time and effort, you can teach yourself how to naturally stay focused on the positive in any situation.

Picture a bucket filled to the brim with dirty water. That bucket is your mind, and the dirty water represents all those negative thoughts filling up your brain. Now place the bucket under a faucet and add a little bit of water. At first, it’s mostly the clean water on top that spills over, leaving you still with a bucketful of dirty water. But if you continue to pour more and more clean water into the bucket, most of the dirty water will flush out. This is what happens when you fill your mind with positive thoughts. Eventually, the negative thoughts are replaced with positive thoughts.

Here’s the most important part. If you let that water just sit without continuing to add clean water, it’ll eventually get dirty again. So, you want to constantly add positive thoughts to your brain to keep things from turning negative again.


You have control over your actions. You can choose to take the necessary steps to reach your goals or choose to sit on the couch all day binge-watching the latest Netflix series. You can choose to stay after practice and work on your jump shot for another thirty minutes or choose to go home and play video games. You can choose to react poorly to that bad call from the referee or when the coach takes you out of the game, or you can choose to respond gracefully.

Every single action has consequences. Sometimes consequences are bad. But sometimes they’re good. If you work out regularly and eat healthy, the consequences of those actions are going to be that your body feels good, and you will most likely have fewer health issues. So, before you do or don’t do something, keep in mind there will be some type of consequence.

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