As youngsters others were primarily in control of our lives, namely parents, teachers and perhaps other siblings to some extent. Depending on the nature of that control we flourished or languished until the moment when we started to take charge. Eventually,for most, there came a point when we took complete responsibility for the direction of our lives. The influence of that early control, benevolent or wrong headed, undoubtedly shaped our path to a great extent.
In my case, with a mean spirited man as my mother's then mate, the influence was one of fear and dread. Initially the fear and dread was about him. At age thirteen I stood up to him and was able to dispel the fear and dread of him personally. The fear and dread which was programmed into me has persisted for more than 50 years as a background noise that was easily triggered by normal setbacks and other less than perfect feedback. It didn't feel any different than the fear of him personally.
While I was in charge of most of the economic and practical aspects of my life, I was not in charge of my happiness which was constantly sabotaged by ordinary events. By daily practicing The Happiness Process, I am now in charge of one of the most important and sought after states of being. HAPPINESS. [Russell]