Have you every noticed that there are many people who want you to live by their rules and think that their rules are the only rules to live by? Then, they try to impose their rules of life onto you, thinking that what works for them, will work for you as well. They insist on it!
But you and I know that it doesn’t work that way. Often, when you live by other people’s rules, you find yourself frustrated, unhappy and not satisfied with the way things are.
And, here’s the kicker … when you live by other people’s rules, especially when those rules don’t feel good to you, it keeps you from living a life filled with joy.
It feels difficult to attract into your life what you desire to have because you are not following your own inner guidance system. You are living life by guidelines that don’t belong to you. It’s as if you took the directions to get to your friend’s house and you used those same directions to get to your house. That just wouldn’t work. You would end up at your friend’s house, not yours!!!
Many of my clients get caught up in this trap of living by other people’s rules and it stops them from living the life they truly desire to have. For example, I have a client who hired me to help her grow her photography business. She has attended many workshops, followed lots of business consultants, hired other coaches and is extremely active on social media. However, when she initially hired me her head was spinning with rules and action steps that others told her that would help her grow her business. She felt stuck, not seeing any growth in her business at all. Why is that? She was learning steps from other “entrepreneurial experts”. She was spending lots of time growing her fan base. So, why was nothing happening for her?
Because many of the action steps she was told to take did not feel good to her. Matter of fact, most of them made her feel stressed out and overwhelmed. And you know what that feeling prompts you to do next? You got it … NOTHING! How can you be motivated to take action, when all the action steps in front of you stress you out before you even do them? The New Yorker in me says:
“Fawget about it … you might as well stop everything you are doing and do something that puts a great big smile on your face!”
And that’s essentially what I told her to initially do.
Now, you may be thinking “well, that’s not going to grow her business”, but au contraire … it will! Let me explain.
I proceeded to tell my client to follow her “feel good”. This meant to only take inspired action steps, the ones that put a smile on her face. She asked me “what should I do with those action steps that don’t feel good?” And you know what my answer was … “Ditch them!” So, she started to make up her own “feel good” rules to building her business. Initially this was a foreign concept to her, but it felt so darn good. She was sending me e-mail messages after 1 week of working with me and feeling so elated, light and free. She was ditching the rules of others and just following what felt good to her! And you know what happened? She started getting really clear as to what her business niche was and how much she was going to charge and started writing the copy for her website (something that she was “stuck” around before). And as I am writing this, she has her first paying gig and is getting paid for doing what she loves to do!
She was going with the flow of “feel good” and paying attention to her emotional guidance system. Even her spouse started telling her how much lighter and happier she was after 1 week of working with me. Now, I am not saying this to toot my own horn (although toot toot … why not?), I am pointing out the power in following what feels good to you and being keenly aware of how you feel when you are living by other people’s rules. When you are in touch with your own emotional guidance system and let how you are feeling be your guide to determining what step you should take next, that’s when life opens up for you and you begin to feel happy and pleased with the direction you are heading towards.
The clarity you seek is within you. You just have to stop, assess how what you are doing is feeling, and decide from there whether you need to change the steps you are taking or keep on plugging along. And the only indication that would say “change up” is if what you are currently doing is not feeling good to you. Yes, that’s your ticket to being happy and achieving your goals in life – FOLLOW YOUR FEEL GOOD!
Now, here are a few suggestions on making your own “feel good rules” for life:
If you have your own rules that you live by right now, reevaluate them and see if you have outgrown some of them. Do they resonate with you 100%? Do they make you feel good on the inside? Are they truly YOUR rules?
If your rules include the behavior of others (meaning your happiness is contingent upon what others say or do or how they interact with you), you are really setting yourself up for disappointment and a life of being unhappy. You cannot control what others do. You can only control what YOU do and how you feel. Ditch the rules you have that involve what others “should do”. “Shoulds” stop you from living a life filled with joy.
Start asking yourself the question “does this rule or action step that I am taking belong to me or is it someone else’s rule and belief system?”
When you start becoming more aware of what feels good to you and follow your own guidance system, you will feel so much happier in life.
When you feel overwhelmed or stressed out, stop and notice it. Many of us live by default, thinking that being stressed is just a way of life or that feeling overwhelmed is what you are supposed to feel if you are running your own business or have a very hectic life schedule. That’s simply not true. You don’t have to feel overwhelmed. You can choose to stop, be aware of that overwhelmed feeling and then deliberately choose to pivot to a better feeling place. Also, in times of feeling overwhelmed and stressed, we are living by other people’s rules and beliefs about the way we should be living our life. You need to recognize that and change it immediately.
Here’s a novel concept, which may resonate with you most of all: Don’t live by any specific rules. Just follow your bliss. Go with the flow. Realize that the only constant is change and be flexible in those moments of change. Live in the moment. Love what you have. Trust that all will work out for the best … and it eventually will!