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Stop Following the Rules!

by bevbarnes on July 8, 2011



Starting an on-line business has been the most difficult thing I’ve ever done.  Not for the reasons you’d imagine.  Yes the technology keeps changing at the speed of light and yes I’ve had to learn about marketing and social media.  But that’s not the hard part.  It’s been hard because I’ve had to stop hiding.

Holy exposure Batman!

I had no idea that starting a coaching business on-line would mean that I’d have to throw out my life rules and rewrite my story.

You see I’ve been telling myself a story all my life.  I have lots of evidence it’s true.  The problem is that if I believe that story then I can’t do my life’s work.

I bet you’re curious.

Okay.  I’ll tell you what I call my “Woe is Me” story for the first, and hopefully the last time.  (Cut to the violins playing a sad melody).

I’m a second child.  That means that when I was born, one year and nine months after my sister, my role was already defined form me.  I had to fit in and adapt.  I was not the one who would explore new frontiers.  I was always prepared for what came next.  I never had to do anything first.  I’d seen the school texts before each grade started; I learned from my sister’s mistakes and so made fewer of mine. 

On top of that, I had immigrant parents.  First they immigrated to England, where I was born, and then Canada, where I grew up.  The job I assigned myself was to figure out all the rules of society, follow them and make sure my parents followed them.  That way, I believed we’d follow the immigrants golden rule – fit in and don’t call attention to yourself.

My main life rule was to fit in and not call attention to myself. My second life rule was to make as few mistakes as possible.

And I followed those rule so well that by the age of 29 I was the national manager of an occupational health program at a huge corporation.  But I felt like I was in prison.

That was my wake up call.

In order for me to live my true calling, I’ve had to throw out the rules that I made for myself when I was six years old.  It is impossible to have an authentic on-line business and hide who you really are.  It is equally impossible to have an on-line business and play it safe.  My heart chose work that forced me to throw out my outdated rules.  I can tell you, it hasn’t been easy.  I’ve had to take teeny, tiny steps to outwit my resistance and I still do, every single day.  But it’s getting easier because it feels so good when I show up authentically, and don’t hide.

What rules are you still following that you made when you were six?

When do you feel like you’re in a prison?

Are your rules keeping you from finding or living your true calling?

The whole story of your life; your struggles, your loves, your fears, your lessons are part of the fabric of YOU and are intricately related to your true calling in life.

Your calling is to be who YOU are.  It is to use your gifts to add love to the world.

In order to do that, you have to get conscious; figure out which rules you are following and decide if they help you or hinder you.  In all likelihood rules you made when you were six have probably run their course in terms of effectiveness.

Are you ready to stop following the rules?

Maybe it’s time!


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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Janelle July 14, 2011 at 4:24 pm

Love this post Bev! I’ll be thinking about it all day and all of my rules. Your updated website is very nice as well. 🙂 Keep on shining.


Bev July 15, 2011 at 1:11 am

Thanks Janelle. I’ve found a whole bunch more outdated rules since I wrote this!


Bev Barnes July 15, 2011 at 2:12 am

Thanks Janelle. I’ve found a whole bunch more outdated rules since I wrote this!


Lori Koop August 13, 2011 at 7:24 pm

Thanks, Bev. This is an amazing piece of work. It has led to wonderful revelations for myself. Thank for sharing your experience and your insight so specifically. I loved it! xo


Bev Barnes August 14, 2011 at 9:42 pm

Thanks Lori! I know you meant to comment on the Re-connect to your spirit post. I am glad it helped you to some wonderful revelations too! 🙂


Lori Koop August 13, 2011 at 7:25 pm

Funny. I just commented on the wrong post. I’ll have to read this one, but I was commenting on the one about the walk getting you connected.


Bev Barnes August 14, 2011 at 9:42 pm



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