When Breaking The Rules Is Okay(-ish)

Episode 12 - Turns out that not all rules are set in stone...

…and that realisation is a big deal for a lawyer like myself! 

When you’re a sensitive, smart, creative person,  more than likely you have a well-developed sense of righteousness and feel strongly about rules being just. In itself, that passion is a good thing, but it can cause a lot of stress for you, too. Not just because witnessing injustice of any kind tends to upset you, but because it also affects you in a less obvious way.

In our daily life, we are bombarded with rules like ‘don’t be late’, ‘don’t interrupt people when they are speaking’, or ‘you HAVE to do this in order to…’. The rules are sharp, obviously mandatory and leave no room for discussion. 

Or so it seems to you from your point of view. 

But these rules exist for a very different reason than you might think. They are not hard rules of conduct that you must follow in order to be a Good Person and Responsible Adult.

Rather, they are traffic rules laid down by people’s Captains among each other. Our Captains agree on what are in essence traffic rules, so that their respective Ships – that is, two people – don’t collide and the process that both people are working on goes as smoothly as possible.

Breaking those Captains’ rules by being a little late once in a while doesn’t reflect on your value as a person. The reason we feel that not sticking to these rules disqualifies us as a Responsible Adult is because that is what your First Mate has come to believe. 

In this video, I explain how that happens, and what you can do to give yourself a little more leeway – and less stress – when it comes to these every-day situations.

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Video is subtitled in English & Dutch 

About the author

Christel Vogels developed the Ship Psychology Method as a playful means to understand your own mind. As coach and trainer, she teaches people how managing their thoughts, feelings and behaviour can help to improve their mental quality of life.

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