How many rules do you have that control your life? Are they making you happy?
This week, we are discussing:

Is it time to break the rules?

Do yours make you happy?

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OK, let me share something with you. When I was a teenager I was quite rebellious. I broke the rules (a lot). And there have been times as an adult where I have also broken the rules. I haven't broken the law, I respect the law, but I have definitely broken the rules. I've broken my own rules and I've broken those that others have tried to impose on me. And every time I have had growth and learned more about myself and what makes me happy than I knew before I broke them. 

Let me explain a little more. If you have rules about what it takes to be happy, chances are you will spend most of your time feeling unhappy. If you have a rule that says 'to be happy, everyone must like me all of the time', you will have a hard time making that rule true. When we can't live up to our rules we face a life of hurt, anger, depression and general sadness.

The problem with rules is that when we break them we feel bad. Sometimes we will create new rules to make sure that we meet the old ones.We try to make ourselves feel better by engaging in unhealthy relationships, by buying stuff we don't need, by buying things for ourselves and others that we cannot afford and generally doing whatever we can to make our lives match up to the rules we have written. 

Sometimes we will try to live with the rules that others put on us. If we can just be nice enough, wear the right clothes, be the right weight or work in the right sort of job then we somehow believe that we will be accepted and loved by all who meet us. This is such a lie. If you think about the times in life when you felt truly loved, happy and filled up it is more than likely that you were filled up from the inside even though you may have been in violation of your own rules. 

 When you are with good friends having a fun time, when you hold your child for the first time, when you are whispering sweet nothings with someone you adore and when you are walking through nature or whatever scenario you can think of that has made you truly happy. When you are filled up with  love it can come out of you and that is when you are truly happy. In that moment you are not trying to make sure you follow your own rules. You are in the moment. 

When you are trying to live up to the rules you impose, or someone else imposes, about what has to happen for you to be happy, you won't be. I know this because I have tried to live by the rules. I've tried in the past to live by the rules of being good enough, of being fun enough, attractive enough and clever enough. And I have lived by the rules of others - that I have to be quiet enough, not offensive, not too 'out there' and not challenging.

I don't know about you but playing by the rules is exhausting and not very satisfying. I feel much happier when I don't have rules about what it takes to be happy. When I just decide in a moment that I love me and I love my life and right now, where I am and who I am is pretty spectacular. 

So, give it a go. Try living for just a day with no rules you have to live by for happiness. If that goes well then try it for another day and another and keep going. When you don't have rules you won't beat yourself up for breaking them. This is what living in integrity looks like. Living in integrity means that sometimes rules are made to be broken. If they limit our potential and water down who we are, then we can safely let them go.  When you live life on your terms, when you are able to look in the mirror and say 'YOU ARE AMAZING' and when you like what you see and who you are everyday. 

have a great week.

Til next time



I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. 

Robert A. Heinlein

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Feelings of worth can flourish only in an atmosphere where individual differences are appreciated, mistakes are tolerated, communication is open, and rules are flexible - the kind of atmosphere that is found in a nurturing family.

Virginia Satir


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