Are you already in a relationship, just found out about ‘The Rules’ (TR) and realised you’ve broken lots of them?
First of all, don’t panic! You can apply TR no matter your situation. You may not think you can right now but hopefully I will able to give you some ideas about how you can.
Now, I am going to pre-warn you that TR are not easy, but if you really want your relationship to work then applying them will reward you ten fold. TR are about long term thinking, not short-term gratification.
Okay, so I’m going to use FlyLady’s quote again here “You are not behind! I don’t want you to try to catch up; I just want you to jump in where we are. O.K.?”. What does this mean to you here right now? – It means do not make excuses why you can’t follow TR right now. Instead here’s what I did when I re-started TR after breaking them for about four years. I immersed myself in TR. I re-read all my Rules books and bought any I hadn’t already got. I studied TR until I knew them inside out and upside down. It may be hard to change your behaviour and you are going to make mistakes but just commit to them and do your best. Jump in where you are!
For example, one of the things I did was write out a list of the things I could do to start making improvements. Now, do not overwhelm yourself and make this list too long and don’t berate yourself if you don’t do them perfectly. Instead, just start and do your best. If you do this and focus on improving and doing better each day, you will succeed and see results.
For example your list may contain the following items:
- Do not contact bf under any circumstances. Who can I contact instead? (a family member or good Rules-y friend).
- Read a chapter of TR everyday.
- Straighten my hair.
- Buy some cute Rules-y outfits.
- Allow my bf to speak to me first.
- Do not offer to drive to see bf / pick him up etc…
- Practice TR at work and with others.
- Keep a Rules journal and write in it before I go to bed each night.
Hopefully you get the idea.
I would suggest going through TR books, buy them all if you don’t have them, or borrow them from the library.
Write down a list of The Rules you are breaking, find the relevant chapter and write a list of actions you can take to start following TR.
From this list of actions, choose your top three to ten (the ones that you feel you can do now) and write them out.
Write down what problems / excuses / reasons you are finding for not applying TR. This is a process, you haven’t been following TR up until now. It is highly likely if you have read this far that you believe that TR you have broken have caused problems in your past and / or present relationships and this is why you want to know how to follow them now. You are probably scared because you don’t want to jeopardise your relationship, how do you know TR will work and its not just that everybody has these problems, or that you and your guy just aren’t well suited, or that you are just not good at relationships? This is where a leap of faith is required. I took a leap of faith and now I’m happily married. I’m not saying this will work for everyone, but the reason I’m a Rules Coach is because I believe they can work for everyone and that they worked for me and that anyone can apply TR. It just takes a leap of faith and some effort on your part.
No one is perfect and it is highly unlikely that anyone has ever not broken a rule or messed up somewhere along the line. But if you do enough – then you can make a significant difference to your life and improve things beyond which that you can imagine right now – especially if you are struggling right now. Aim to follow TR by the book and then if you make a mistake it will soon be forgotten.
Let’s say you are in a relationship now, you’ve just found out about TR and you and your bf meet halfway. Okay so, first things first, you do not need to sit down and have a ‘talk’ with your bf. In general men hate ‘talks’. Instead, wait for him to contact you and ask to meet up. Let’s say he says shall we meet where we usually do? You could say – I would really prefer to meet in ‘location X’ (near your home town) and if he says why, just repeat what you have said “I would just really prefer to meet there”. When you are having this conversation, you always speak to him sweetly. Remember, you have spoiled your bf previously by meeting him halfway. You may feel mean about doing this, but this is the start of you setting healthy boundaries and following The Fundamentals of TR. This will actually benefit both you and your bf in the long term. This is what you must keep in mind. You may feel mean now but this is not about being mean it is about allowing the man to pursue you and believe it or not, this will make you both much happier in the long run. If he presses the issue or gets upset and / or is mean then end the conversation quickly and sweetly. If he is not a ‘Buyer Beware’ then it is likely he will call you back later and make arrangements to come to you. It is important you stay strong at this point and do not cave and fall back into your old habits. This will feel uncomfortable especially at first, but you are setting up new routines, habits and boundaries for you and him so this will feel uncomfortable and strange at the start. It is good to keep in mind that your bf is not your adversary, he didn’t make you break TR. Always be sweet and light and always do your very best to follow TR, you will likely be happily surprised at the results! Remember, if he is really your Mr Right, then even if he is at first upset, he will soon get over it and make plans to see you because you are special to him. If he is not your Mr Right then he will not likely stick around. You deserve your Mr Right – the man you adore and are crazy about and your Mr Right deserves you – a girl he is madly in love with – and you will soon discover if you both truly in love and committed or not when following TR.
Also, please remember if you do break TR, do not spend hours feeling bad and berating yourself. Instead, use this as an opportunity to empower yourself. Go grab your journal or a sheet of paper right now and plan out how you would handle that situation if it happened again and / or plan what you are going to do next time. Use it an an opportunity to learn TR. I am qualified as a Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) Master Practitioner and in NLP there are 15 presuppositions. One of them is ‘there is no failure, only feedback’. This is a great philosophy to live by, if we view each experience as opportunity to learn and grow versus a failure what potential will our lives hold?
I hope this blog gives you some ideas.
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