Values and Rules (Part 2)Mar 31, 2023
Lets talk values!
Can I pose some questions to help check whether our rules are helping or hindering us, as they are often a trigger for any pain or pleasure we feel in our nervous system, which we then try to soothe with an addiction or habit of choice:
- What rules have we created to feel good or bad about ourselves - most people have lots of rules / ways to feel bad but very few ways to feel good
- What has to happen for me to feel good (is it even possible?).
- Am I setting myself an unreasonable standard of perfection and then soothing my pain when I don't meet the standard, and often then blaming this on others?
- What rules do I have which are unwinnable e.g. (a) needing to be fully in control of every situation, people or environment, (b) needing to have had experience in doing something (I.e. not liking things first time around), (c) impossible to meet or complex criteria which gives me lots of ways to fail but very few to be successful
- Are they still appropriate or relevant for who we’ve become or want to become in our post addiction lives?
Let's bring this to life
Can I try to bring this to life with an example - Geraldine’s (name changed) old ‘moving toward’ values include love, health, security & freedom - that sounds great, what could possibly go wrong……..but these were her rules for those values….
- Love - I have to feel like I have earned it, like all my beliefs are accepted and approved. I can’t feel like I’m loved unless I’m perfect. I have to be a great mother
- Health - I have to feel like my diet is perfect by my strict standards. I have to be completely free of physical pain. I must feel like I’m healthier than everyone I know and be an example
- Security - everyone must like me. I must feel that everyone I meet is certain I’m a good person. I must have more money in my savings account than I already do
- Freedom - I must be in control of my working demands, hours, fees, opinions etc. I must be financially secure enough not to live under stress of financially regulated pressure
Geraldine’s old ‘moving away from’ values
- Rejection - I feel rejected if someone doesn’t share my beliefs, if someone seemingly knows more than I do
- Failure - I feel failure if someone doesn’t believe I’m a good person, if I don’t feel I support myself or my family well enough
- Anger - I feel anger when I don’t feel like what I do is appreciated, when people judge me before they know me
I imagine at this stage you are all thinking a mix of:
- Geraldine can never be happy and is probably addicted to all sorts of habits
- I can see rather a lot of similarities with my current situation - ouch
With the help of The Reset Challenge, Geraldine rewrote the rules behind the values and the NEW ‘moving toward’ values were:
- Love - I experience love anytime I express love, give love to others, or allow myself to receive it
- Health - I am healthy when I acknowledge how wonderful I already feel
- Fun - I’m having fun when I find pleasure and joy in the process
- Gratitude - I feel grateful when I appreciate all the things I have in my life right now
- Freedom - I feel free when I live by my convictions and accept the choice to create happiness for myself
Geraldine’s NEW ‘moving away from’ values
- Negativity - I avoid consistently depending on the acceptance of others for my ultimate happiness and success
- Procrastination - I avoid consistently expecting perfection from myself and others
Wow, I can see how Geraldine could NOW be successful…..so what about you?
What about setting a new standard - “every day I am above ground is a successful day”, as our rules should encourage us to take action, feel joy & follow through,
- What are your ‘moving toward pleasure’ values - which ones empower you and which ones disempower you?
- What about your ‘moving away from’ pain values - which ones empower you and which ones disempower you?
- What has to happen (rules) in order to feel loved, appreciated, accepted…
Write down one thing you could do today to start re-writing your values and rules
What one thing will you do today to start overcoming one of your fears – and then just do it
Are you feeling overwhelmed, struggling with your rules or finding a way to reset and break out of the same old habits?
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Thanks, to your freedom and success
Founder, The RESET Challenge
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