Control: Kellen says let it go since you never had it anyway!
How do we cope when life throws us a curveball we’re unable to catch? Like photographer Kellen Mohr, who one moment was plowin’ backwards down a double black diamond and the next was being life-flighted out of Mammoth and prepping for surgery. On his brief flight between hospitals armed only with the knowledge he had some sort of large tumor in his brain, it would’ve been easy for Kellen to go into an emotional tailspin wondering and worrying, over thinking and planning for the worst. Instead he showed immense composure for his ripe old age of 22 by refusing to let the temptation to try to control the situation overtake him:
“Control’s a pretty made up construct, really. It’s just humans trying to give themselves an illusion of security or safety.”
Instead of stressing about it, rationalizing it away or trying to grab it by the horns, Kellen chose to breathe in the emotions/chaos and just let life happen as it happens. Easier said than done perhaps, but he found worrying about the answers to the answer-less questions only created more worry. And the act of consciously trying to control the outcome actually gave him less control over his well being.
Maybe if we’d just listened to Pollyanna when she told us to ‘look for the sunshine after the rain’ we would’ve learned this same invaluable lesson, but somehow life leads us to the misguided understanding we actually have some control over it. We do not, so we should strive to channel Watts (Kellen’s favorite philosopher) and make like the shock absorber that doesn’t fall down when struck but gives a little and stays in the same place, or the body of water that doesn’t run away when you push it but simply bends and encloses your hand…
“I’d say I’m a student first - a student of life. I’m just goin with the flow, taking things as they come, and learning. From there, moving on to the next challenge."
Kellen is living proof our minds really do have the power to give and absorb shock, and a testament to the fact when life catches us off guard we should learn to view it as a potential step toward something larger rather than an isolated, unfavorable incident. Everything truly is connected in some way, and one part (even a seemingly devastating one) often leads to a greater whole.
Check out Kellen’s vid to witness how relinquishing control brought about a positive change in his life’s trajectory by pushing him to cultivate a passion he may never have otherwise!