In my previous post I looked at the values that I prioritise in my life, and listed two lists, one of pleasure focused values and one of pain focused values. The next stage in the process, that was talked about in the following chapter of Antony Robbins book – ReAwaken the Giant, was about the rules that we have set in association with these values.
He put forward the case that we have all, subconsciously through our life experience, given ourselves “rules” that allow us to experience the feelings or emotions we consider pleasurable (or painful). Often these rules are very biased, that mean we spend more time experiencing pain, than pleasure, because our rules are bent so that we very rarely meet our own criteria for feeling loved or appreciated.
Let me illustrate this point. If you value that feeling of love the most, then you may of setup a rule in your head that when someone gives you a really expensive gift, then you can feel loved. Then you might have a second rule, that if they don’t give you an expensive gift, they don’t love you. Therefor you feel rejected. The issue comes because rules you have set depend entirely on other people. So you feeling of being loved is entirely dependant on other people. Also, you have set a very harsh criteria for allowing yourself to feel loved. So your setting yourself up to feel rejected 99% of the time, and loved 1% of the time – because none is going to constantly give you expensive gifts!
So I took my top four values from each of my lists and rewrote the rules that I would use to allow myself to feel that emotion. I removed the dependance on other people, and I increased the criteria to give myself permission to feel the pleasurable emotions more than the painful ones.
Pleasure focused rules:
Love – I feel loved anytime that I am demonstrating love to other people, through gifts, acts of service, physical touch, words of affirmation or quality time. Anytime I do something for myself that makes me feel good and restores my ability to love others better. Anytime I make a decision for the right reasons.
Intimacy – I feel intimacy when I spend time evaluating how best to meet the unique individual needs of someone. Anytime I spend time getting to know someone to a greater degree. Anytime I’m working closely with someone in achieving a common goal or when I spend time in the affection of my Father.
Success – Anytime I am working in my strengths zone, anytime I am building up others and helping make them better. Anytime I am balancing my commitments in a responsible manner.
Adventure – Anytime I am doing something I have never done before, or in a place I have never been before. Anytime I choose to step out of my comfort zone or choose to challenge myself.
What are some of the rules you’ve set yourself up with? How do they impact your life in a positive or negative way?