To Always Be In Control

In situations like this, when we are surfing, full control and full focus is needed in order for us to complete the surf safely and successfully. If not, the result may be quite hazardous otherwise.


Many moons ago, I had a “tough question” from my kids on the topic of “passing on”, in the form of whether I would be scare of it. I thought deeply on this for a while and surmised this “Yes, I think I would be but actually not so much of that fact per se, but more so on the circumstances through which it happened,” I said. 

They looked confused and so I explained further. If it was something that happened beyond our control, beyond what we have already done to ensure our safety and well-being, then it is an accident and no one could have prevented it. However, if it happened because of my own lackadaisical attitude towards safety and “no worries, it won’t happen to me!”, then I would not be able to forgive myself afterwards (not that I can do that anymore anyway, right?!). 

I shared an example with them – if I tried to catch the best selfie sunset photo, standing precariously at the edge of a cliff, and really “pushing the boundaries” in spite knowing the immense danger, that would be one good example of blatant ignorance even to the point of stupidity! And I had the chance of reminding them on such situation again recently, when a new wave of stupidity came about in the form of the “tripping jump challenge” on social media. Something that really serve no purpose other than making the perpetrators giggle and laugh happily? Think about it – it is your dad’s birthday soon and you wish to record and upload to social media on how he made a fool of himself tripping and falling. Something you thought your family can view, giggle and have some light-hearted moments over a piece of birthday cake? Innocent enough…but what if it culminated into something that you are not prepared for? Are you able to handle the guilt of this for the rest of your lives? 

Now this, I said, is what I would be scare of. For myself, and for each of my family member. I shared further with them: for whatever that we are able to control in our daily and life journey, we need to take full control of them and not let ourselves regret of our actions (or perhaps inactions). Or do not relinquish that control to someone else too.

The whole world is now on its edge, getting really up close and personal with COVID-19. What began with something initially like “no worries, it is too far away from us, we will be safe”, has turned into something that changes our very ways-of-work (many companies are trudging into the unfamiliar norms of working from home, activating certain Business Continuity Plans, etc) and ways-of-life (previously unheard and alien word of social distancing, online grocery shopping, etc).

Mar 16, 2020 – Malaysia has just announced further measures to curb COVID-19 in the form of restricted movements for its populations. But yet, I am wondering aloud, would the entire population of Malaysians (at least the 24 million individuals who can independently think and rationalize for themselves) really have the same understanding of this situation and of this nationwide restricted movement measures? How many would still think it is alright to go out for a teh-tarik just because it has been a long time since his last cuppa, with friends?! Or with the “extended school holidays”, let’s go for a picnic?!

But really, this following simple picture illustrate this measure, and the need for some self restrictions, very well.

This is really apt – everyone of us has the control within us to make a difference now, to control and to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Credit: Unknown

It is the time now, where we need to be exercising full control for ourselves, for our families and loved ones and for the community and our countries at large. It is not the time to surrender that control foolishly, ignoring the repercussions for the quick and short-term perceived happiness. Whatever planned can, and should, wait until we weather through this critical moment safely. It would be no use at all to regret our actions (or inactions) later, right?

I pray that when everyone in every country exercise full control, COVID-19 will quickly pass us by, and we will get back to our normal ways of life safely and without any regrets. Cheers and stay safe!

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