The term ‘Self-control’ (also called self-direction, self-management, self-regulation) means, as it were, that you retain control over your own life. You make all the decisions about your body and your life. Movisie (social issues knowledge institute in the Netherlands) defines it as: ‘Direction over all domains of one’s own life and everything that is needed at one’s own discretion to lead a good life’. The term ‘self-control’ or the synonyms are often used in healthcare to allow people to make their own decisions about how they want to shape their own life, despite an illness, old age and/or disability. For example, that someone can determine their own bedtimes, or can decide themselves when someone comes to pick them up for a walk in a wheelchair.
Of course, the term self-control can be used for everyone in society, not just in healthcare. Self-control means standing in your own strength, self-reliance, ownership, personal leadership, freedom of choice, setting boundaries and taking responsibility.
In order to take control of your body and your life, you must first know yourself through and through. For example, it is important to know your needs, interests and standards and values. This makes it easier for you to make choices that suit you and to stand for what makes you happy and healthy.
Do you dare to stand up for what feels right to you, even if you were to stand alone?
Own control and make choices
When is self-control used? Every day! In the morning you probably decide for yourself what clothes to put on, when to go to the bathroom or shower, whether or not to have breakfast and so the decisions continue throughout the day.
It often only gets complicated when authorities, professionals and feelings come into play. Often more (self) investigation is needed before a decision can be made. Take, for example, a doctor who advises you on a certain medical treatment, but you feel that you don’t really want this. Are you reluctant to accept this? Or do you want to get a second opinion first, read more about the pros and cons of the treatment? Can you then make a decision that feels right for you or are you afraid of the reactions of others?
The same goes for if your friends smoke, drink alcohol and/or use drugs and it doesn’t suit or feels right for you. Are you going to participate because you don’t want to be found ‘weird’, ‘stupid’? Or do you dare to stand up for what suits you? Of course you make your own choices, that is your own control. But if this is not in line with your feeling, you indirectly give away your own control. This can lead to a weakened immune system and feeling unhappy in the long run. In other words… do you dare to stand in your power, take control and responsibility over your life?
Within Solevita I guide people towards a higher quality of life, among other things. Self-control is an important part of that. But what does self-control actually mean and when do you apply it?