The Rules Others Must Live By

by Jarrod

Photo credit Biking Nikon PDX

We each possess a particular paradigm from which we view the world. From this view of the world we construct a series of constraints about what it should look like and how things act in it. When the world acts in accordance to our constraints we are happy. We have set up our rules for our world.

With this we also create the rules which others must live by and whenever you attach yourself to such rules you start to send yourself into a spiral of pain.

What rules or expectations do you place on those people around you. Have a look at the people you most often choose to hang around. Isin’t it true that the large majority of the time those people meet the expectations that you believe other people should live up to? If you are often happy around them it is because they are acting in a way that conforms to your base expectations of how friends should act.

Now look at the people who you don’t enjoy hanging around with. Isin’t the very reason that you get upset with them because they act in a way which is unsatisfactory to you?

Here’s the deal. If you expect others to live how you believe they should and you attach yourself to those rules you are in for pain. No doubt.

Have a look at your family, do they do things that annoy you. Believe me when I tell you that the very feeling of annoyance is actually caused by you, not them. Which is actually great because it means you have total control of it and can change your life around it. This is a wonderful opportunity.

Become Aware Of Expectations On Peoples Behaviour

Pay attention to yourself whenever you notice a resistance or emotional reaction to someones behaviour.

Then start asking questions around how they would have to act for us to be happy. What they have to do more or less? Take more action or less? Express more of what they mean or be a bit more gentle?

Get a clear picture of what it is that you are demanding of them. How your rules dictate what their behaviour must be.

Relax Your Rules And Relax Your Life

Sometimes you do need to stand up against someones behaviour because it infringes on a part of your life that you are not willing to negotiate on. This is fine and a normal part of carving out your identity. However for the large majority of upsets in our day around this they are totally unnecessary.

Now that you have looked at what your expectations are of another person, ask yourself if the pain you experience from their behaviour is worth holding on to in order to live the way you are? Or will you choose to let go of your desire to control others and with it allow yourself to enjoy more of life?

Really it is that straightforward.

When you try to control the outside world it will end up controlling you.

Give others the freedom from your minds expectations and you to will receive greater freedom in your life.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Jia Jun November 29, 2010 at 4:43 am

The environment does changing and affect us, including friends and family. Self discipline and always stay focus is crucial.


Jarrod November 29, 2010 at 7:17 pm

@Jia: Hi Jia, While our environment does effect us I think my point here and my understanding is that we effect our environment more than anything.

Jia Jun November 29, 2010 at 9:54 pm

Haha, Perhaps my view a bit different, cause my view is it both affect each other, the environment affect us, we affect the environment. :p
Anyway, thanks for the post. :)

Jarrod November 30, 2010 at 6:09 am

@Jia: Cool. Whatever empowers you more to live the life you want to live :)

Zach September 8, 2016 at 6:26 pm

This is a dope article. Very perceptive about something so common that it goes unnoticed by many including my self. “When you try to control the outside world it will end up controlling you” is a statement that i relate too very consistently In my many aspects of life. Therefore my awareness is shifted towards getting rid of this very old unwanted impulse to judge the ones I love with such synical sharpness towards every single action they have. I wanna have a loving out look again exspecially towards the people that are innocent of any harmful intentions towards my being. My change has been a very slow one and I thought it would be easyier to be honest but it finally feels like its moving foward. Thank you universe for allowing me to see this early on in my life and giving me faith in my growth. Learning to grow past judgement of the people in my life that make me feel loved is my true desire. Happy i saw this 2010 article, it help me articulate something i have been working on thanks :D


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