This term is used in psychology as a way to explain the belief of how much do people think they are in control of their lives. If the locus of control is internal, it represents that those people believe that they are pretty much in control of their lives. If the locus of control is external, it means that those people believe that their lives are controlled by other people or entities (God, fate, karma and so on). The belief itself in those entities does not necessarily affect the locus of control. For example, you can believe in karma in a way that allows you to try to do great things because great things will happen to you, compared to believing that whatever is happening to you right now is because of that karma and that you have no control over it. Also, there are people that believe they are in control of their lives which they hate, but they still do nothing to change it.
The idea that I’m in control of my life made me feel more relaxed because I know I got this sh*t even though I know I don’t have this yet. At least I know I can do something about it. It’s like I moved from the back seat to the driver seat. It’s liberating.
It’s probably not something like “all in” on any of the two sides. It’s more like a balanced which gets tilted more in one way or another so which one is better? I actually don’t know. I guess it depends from a person to another. For me, it’s better to know that I’m in control of my own destiny. For other people might be better to know that they have a written path in this world.
What do you believe it applies for you? Are you more in control or not?
10 thoughts on “The Locus of Control”
I believe that I am in overall control of my life, but that there will always be external influences and events over which I have no control. Then, it is my reaction to these things that I can control, if not the events themselves.
Yes, exactly. We cannot control the events themselves, but we can control our reactions (or we can learn how to do it).
Hey! Nice post!
Generally speaking, I also believe I’m in control of my life 100% – internal LoC.
Findings show that people who have a more internal Locus of Control are correlated with better psychological and mental well-being.
Why this is?
If you genuinely believe you are 100% control, then you will also stop blaming others if things don’t always go right. Studies show that people with a lower Locus of Control also have tendency to believe it was ‘their fault’ that something didn’t work out the way they wanted to…
Believing that it was your fault, therefore implies that you also have the ability to change the outcome/result of something.
Thanks for sharing 🙂
Yes, exactly. And usually those people can achieve more in life if they want to. Thank you for sharing this!
Depends if I can look around and see what I need to do around me, or if I get tired, or consumed by things I cannot control like the past, the future, places I cannot reach, and other people’s opinion.
Sometimes it can be overwhelming.
This is a good topic. I’m more inwardly focused, so, of course, I think that I’m in control of my life. When things go wrong, it’s all my fault. Blah. Blah. Blah. But, I do believe in a higher power. So, when things go right, I believe that God paved the way for me.
He maybe creates paths, but we should keep our eyes open so we can see those paths.
This is a complicated matter for me. I majored in psychology at an honors college for my undergraduate degree. So, I’m very familiar with this concept. Having said that, as a recovering alcoholic, we are taught to “turn it over” (meaning to our higher power) when things get unmanageable in our lives. I don’t necessarily think that the two theories are incongruous, though. I think we can have an internal locus of control (I have control over my life until it becomes unmanageable and then I’m going to turn it over and do the next right thing). AA teaches us that it is a program of action. If we rest on our laurels, we are in danger of relapse. So, while I am by no means a perfect example of one with an internal locus of control, I work at it.
Yes, I agree. I mentioned there that the locus of control does not include or exclude the belief into a higher power. Doing the “switch” is a complicated thing because it involves multiple aspects, one of them being fear. It is great that you’re working on it!