What "BRULES" Do you Need to Break to Live Your Best Life?
Rev. Dr. Kitty Boitnott, NBCT, RScP
Heart-Centered Career Transition & Job Search Coach | Possibility Thinker
The "laws" that Lakhiani writes about in this, his first book, made a lot of sense to me. I especially liked Law #2 which was "Question the Brules."
So, what are "Brules?" And why do they need to be questioned?
Lakihiani has coined the phrase "Brule" by pairing the two words, "bulls*!@" and "rule." Put them together, and you have "Brule."
"Brules" are the "rules" that we accept from society or our families without question.
If we do question a "Brule", we are told, "That's just the way it is," or "We have always done it that way."
Many of our "Brules" have come down through generations to us. Some of the "Brules" are made up for social purposes. Some come from religious doctrine and traditions that haven't been questioned for centuries. Some of them come to us as family expectations.
If you question a "Brule" you run the risk of being labeled a troublemaker or a rebel. Yet, the great thinkers of our time have questioned "Brules" throughout the ages. Going back to Biblical times, Jesus questioned the "Brules" and suffered the ultimate sacrifice for it. Later, great thinkers like Galileo were persecuted for challenging the views that were generally accepted as "facts." Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein questioned "Brules." So did Steve Jobs. These are just a few examples of individuals who have had the "audacity" to question the rules of convention.
Think about it. We were raised to believe in certain "rules." And because, as children, we are taught to be compliant and follow the "rules" or else be punished in some way, we do. Sometimes we follow them without giving the rule itself any real thought.
Given that we just commemorated Holocaust Memorial Day a few days ago, it occurs to me that Nazi soldiers in the 1930's and 1940's were following "rules" when they gathered up millions of Jews and sent them to gas chambers. It is hard to imagine, but how else do you explain what happened? The people who questioned what was happening either went into exile or were imprisoned. That is an extreme case, for sure, but consider what "Brules" you follow without giving them any thought about whether they are valid or whether they serve you or harm you in the long run?
Lakhiani suggests that "extraordinary minds question the Brules when they feel those Brules are out of alignment with their dreams and desires. They recognize that much of the way the world works is due to people blindly following Brules that have long passed their expiration date." (p.37)
I believe we are all "extraordinary minds." Therefore, it is up to each of us to question the Brules that run our lives.
Lakhiani suggests that it is time to question the Brules that no longer serve their intended purpose.
Examples of some Brules that should be questioned: Everyone needs to go to college to be successful in life. We should all aspire to make a certain amount of money if we want to be happy. We should choose our mate based on who our parents will approve. We should work at a job that people admire and look up to whether we enjoy it or not.
These types of Brules should be questioned, and Lakhiani suggests using the following questions to help you discern if you should keep a Brule or discard it:
1) Is it based on trust and hope in humanity?
If we are to survive and thrive as a global community, we need to have trust and hope in humanity. It is basic to our survival as a species.
2) Does it violate the Golden Rule?
Adhering to the Golden Rule (Do unto others as you would have them do unto you) is also required if we are to survive and thrive as a global community. The "dog eat dog" mentality serves no one in the long run.
3) Did I take it on from culture or religion?
Religion and the "norms" of culture and society are often responsible for creating Brules that have long outlived their original purpose. Question them, especially if they seem to be at odds with #1 and #2 above.
4) Is it based on rational choice or contagion?
This is an interesting one because studies would suggest that perhaps we behave with more of a "herd mentality" than we might think. Do we accept everything we see, read, or hear, for example, on our Facebook and Twitter accounts? Or do we question before leaping to a conclusion?
5) Does it serve my happiness?
This is the biggest consideration, it seems to me. The bottom line is, are you happy?
If you aren't, why would you continue to follow Brules that keep you from your birthright to be happy?
"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma--which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of others' opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, dare to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."
These are wise words. Indeed, in my work with my clients, I consistently urge them to listen to their "heart and intuition."
I am acutely aware that life is too short to spend it doing something you don't enjoy. So, if you are stuck in a job that you no longer enjoy (if you ever did), it is time to question why you are sticking with it. Is it because of some "Brule" that you think you can't look for something else?
Don't live your life based on Brules that no longer serve you. Some of the Brules that drive us today have long outlived their usefulness.
We live in interesting times. It is time for us to all be awake and in tune with what destiny is calling us to do. Steve Jobs' life was cut short. Yet he made a huge impact on the world for the time he was here.
What impact do you want to make while you are here?
What Brule do you need to question and break if you are to live the life you want?
These are questions I urge you to consider. Live the life YOU want. Rid yourself of the Brules that no longer serve you.
Until next time.
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