15 Things Happen When You Give Up Control

The World-Famous System for Relinquishing Control has Unexpected Side Effects

What happens when 18 women tell the up-close and personal story of how their marriages were struggling in some way, and describe exactly how they stopped controlling to restore the passion and playfulness?

First, you get an inspiring book of best practices for a playful, passionate marriage, which you can then apply to your own relationship.

Second, some other patterns emerge.

Let’s say you’re in the habit of giving your husband “helpful suggestions,” like all of us were.

Or maybe you’re less subtle about it, and you just come right out and tell him what to do, like we also did.

And let’s say that one day you decide to stop controlling…

Then what?


Here’s what we found out by putting all the first-hand accounts together in the book Surrendered Wives Empowered Women: Inspiring True Stories of Women Who Made Their Relationships Intimate, Passionate and Peaceful Again: As soon as you stop controlling your guy, your relationship gets so much better!

AND all of this happens too…

1) You discover your real purpose in the world.

This one is obvious if you think about it.

Being the arm-chair critic of your man’s life is a big distraction from your own life, which you’re not paying attention to when you’re trying to control him.

It’s like your life is riding around in a car with no one at the wheel, maybe faking an injury so it can get some attention.

What emerged is that as we stopped focusing on him, our real purpose in the world was there waiting for us, calling us to come out of hiding.

Relinquishing inappropriate control led us to the joy of doing what we were born to do.

2) You regain your dignity.

None of us liked feeling like our mother on her worst day.

The part where you keep calm and carry on like a Londoner during The Battle of Britain in WWII? Surprisingly gratifying.

3) You get a lot more energy.

Controlling someone you can’t control is exhausting.

4) You become more attractive

Talk about an extreme makeover.

No matter how beautiful you are physically, control spoils your good looks.

A wife who’s smiling, laughing and flirting (which is what you tend to do when you stop controlling) is a supermodel as far as her husband is concerned.

5) Your sex life improves

For many of us sex had gone missing. Turns out, men aren’t sexually attracted to their mothers, or their mothering wives.

Once you stop acting like his mother, you go back to enjoying being his lover forever.

6) You have more fun

I’m cheating on this one, because having more fun actually comes ahead of giving up inappropriate control of your husband or boyfriend.

In other words, you have to START having more fun to STOP being so controlling. In the 17 years I’ve been doing this work, that’s the only way I’ve ever seen anybody pull it off.

That said, it’s also true that when you stop controlling, you spend a lot more time doing the things you love.

7) You get more help

Maybe you feel like your husband is not that useful or capable or smart. That’s how we felt too. Why do you think we were so controlling?

But then when we stopped controlling, inexplicable things started happening. Our husbands researched the health insurance and found a better plan, started doing the dishes and putting the kids to bed, and got the computer working right.

We found that every time we turned around, our guys were doing something helpful, although usually not the way we envisioned them doing it.

I know, I know—we couldn’t believe it either. Go figure!

8) You feel more feminine

Managing everybody and everything can make you feel masculine. We started to feel downright hairy. Not on purpose, obviously.

Giving up trying to control our guys made us softer. Receiving gifts, compliments and help that we previously rejected made us feel more like women––well looked-after, adored women.

9) You’re more attracted to him

A perfume commercial reminded us, “Want him to be more of a man? Try being more of a woman.”

When you stop being so hairy, he seems to grow some hair on his chest and suddenly you remember that you’ve always liked hairy chests.

Fireworks ensue.

He also feels the drive to become a better man–and so he becomes one.

10) You have more tender moments

One woman wrote about how her husband spontaneously apologized– without her complaining, fuming or sighing heavily–for making them late to a family party.

It was a special moment for her because she couldn’t remember him having done that previously. Ever.

Our husbands got more romantic and gave us more compliments too. They held our hands, or held our face as they kissed us. They shared their deepest secrets and their wacky ideas.

We loved every minute of it.

11) Your other relationships improve

Relinquishing inappropriate control gets to be so relaxing, beautifying, and enjoyable that you start doing it with your BFFs, your dad, your kids, and everybody else.

And they start opening up to you more because they trust you. You have a deeper connection than you’ve ever had.

12) You feel the fear and do it anyway

All control is based in fear, so when you stop controlling someone you really couldn’t control anyway, all you’re doing is giving up your costly coping mechanism.

When you stop trying to control someone else, it’s scary at times.

But when you start deciding to choose your faith instead of your fear, it’s empowering, too. You gain courage for other scary things in life.

Like fulfilling your purpose.

You start living out loud and honoring yourself like never before. It’s terrifying and exhilarating.

This is living.

13) You stop fighting city hall

When we started focusing on our own feelings and desires, we discovered superpowers that we never knew we had before.

It’s so easy and fun to get what you want by expressing a desire in a way that inspires your man that fighting anybody over anything just seems like too much effort.

We were no longer victims who felt powerless, and the anger we felt about all the injustices in the world just….dissipated.

14) You get more presents and compliments

There are more flowers for no reason, more diamond rings, more road trips and more sushi dinners, even when he doesn’t like sushi.

He says how beautiful you are and how lucky he is to have you and says it more often.

15) You become your best self

All of us decided to relinquish control of our husbands because we wanted better relationships. We wanted to be loved. But a funny thing happened along the way.

We gained confidence, and a sense of calm. We were more pleasant and grateful, and even respectful. We were happier.

In other words, we became the best version of ourselves.

At least, that’s what the authors of Surrendered Wives Empowered Women and I have experienced.

A surrendered wife knows she can’t change anyone besides herself, so she doesn’t try. She focuses on her own happiness, and that improves the intimacy.

True, we don’t tell our husbands what to wear, or what to eat or how to drive or what to do at work anymore. But then again, that never seemed to get us what we wanted anyway.

The passion, the playfulness, and the intimacy–and the other 15 cool things that we got when we let go of control–were all through the magical door marked, “surrender.”

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