By Mary Foley
Following the rules was so ingrained in me that when I was a little girl, I was convinced there were entire families who would sit at the kitchen table with their peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and milk, quietly waiting until the stroke of noon to eat lunch, the official, preordained lunch start time.
And we wonder why so many women still struggle with creating a life that truly fulfills them and makes them happy.
Perhaps you were like me. When I was a child, I was very compliant. I followed all the rules and respected authority and leadership like I was told (or at least I was scared of those in authority). For the most part, rules served me well as a little girl. They protected me and taught me discipline when I was developing into an adult who was expected to take care of herself.
Two of the top 10 differences between good girls and bodacious women are that good girls are along for the ride and justify their actions while bodacious women are in the driver’s seat and just act.
It took me years as an adult and the school of hard knocks to see rules in a whole new light. Now, instead of simply dutifully following rules, I consider their relevance to my situation and decide if they are truly useful. Living bodaciously, I find myself following or breaking rules as I deem necessary. Bet you have, too. Ever taken a U-turn when you weren’t supposed to? Such a rebel!
What are the rules anyway and who came up with them? It seems so many rules aren’t real rules at all, just common norms of behavior that fall into the category of everyone does it that way. If you’ve ever served on a volunteer board or project committee where you’ve heard “this is the way we’ve always done”, then bingo!
Worse, rules can tell you to play small, to wait to be called upon, or to be grateful for what you’ve been given and expect no more. If so, it’s time to be inspired by bodacious woman Katherine Hepburn who said “If you obey all the rules, you miss all the fun!”
The universe is not going to give you a noogie just because you take the biggest piece, change your assigned seat to a more comfortable one after the plane has taken off, request a better table at a restaurant, ask for a discount, or use one job offer to leverage an improved offer from a competitor.
Or, is it? One way to find out. Break a few so-called rules and see what happens. My hunch is that not only will you feel energized and empowered, many of those around will feel a bit more freed up as well. And you will be well on your way to being a truly bodacious woman who is outrageously in charge of her life and loving it!
Image by Bodacious! Ventures
About Mary Foley
Get more free resources to increase sanity in your life at MaryFoley.com, including your Free Sanity, Confidence & Fun Action Pack with eBooks 5 Empowering Words for Women and How to Be a Courageous, Bodacious® Woman ~ Outrageously in Charge of Your Life & Lovin' It! Mary inspires women with practical advice to create sanity in your life and confidence in your career – all while having a bit of fun! She is the author of three books, a popular national speaker, and former co-host of the Girlfriend We Gotta Talk! radio show. Find out more at http://www.maryfoley.com.