How Noble Beliefs Can Box You In

breaking the rules decisions embodiment perfectionist podcast May 11, 2022
The enneagram One Project

How Noble Beliefs Can Box You In

 

I can do whatever I want, so long as it doesn’t bother anyone else

 

Do you know this belief? 

 

Did you get a visceral reaction when you read that just now?

 

You are not alone.

 

This is a golden rule I grew up with and I’m noticing it’s the same for many of my clients.

 

The belief in itself that you can do whatever you want, so long as it doesn’t bother anyone else isn’t bad and isn’t good. 

 

In many situations, it’s exactly what I want to hold as a sort of moral compass. This belief helps me to feel compassionate, kind and helps me to be thoughtful of others. I’m sure it does for you as well, at least some of the time. 

 

What about the times when it creates tension like a feeling of stuck, or maybe even self-abandonment. 

 

Do you give yourself permission to be who you want to be in this world, the same way you give it to others?

 

You can be respectful of others AND be respectful of yourself, they don’t have to be mutually exclusive.

 

There’s no one-size fits all solution here. Sometimes, you’ll want to compromise and my hope for you is that when you do so, you do it from a place of self-honor, not self-abandonment, from intention and not unexplored conditioning.

 

Listen to the full episode HERE.

 

Resources:

 

Work with me: https://www.dominiquevandal.com/work-with-me 

 


 

Transcript:

 

Welcome every One, you are listening to The Enneagram One Project Podcast, Ep 19 How Noble Beliefs Can Box You In.

 

I want to know, how often do you question your moral compass? You know, that part of you that tells you what a good person does and does’t? As an Enneagram One, our biggest desire is to be good and our biggest fear is to be bad so that voice is usually very loud.

 

I want to look at one very common phrase I hear with my coaching clients and it’s always some version of “I can do whatever I want, so long as it doesn’t bother anyone else”. Do you know this belief? Did you get a visceral reaction when you heard me say it just now? 

 

It sounds so very noble, doesn’t it? That your freedom should not impede on someone else’s. You probably heard it your entire life by well-meaning family members and mentors. Like all beliefs, there’s a way you can use this that supports you and there’s a way you can use this to close yourself in a box. 

 

At the end of the episode, you’ll know if it’s still a belief you want to hold on to without question or if you’d like to question it with genuine curiosity.

 

I want to give you 2 different examples to play with and just pay attention to what comes up for you. 

 

Growing up, my mom worked nights at a hospital which means that she also had to work nights every other weekend. From as early as I can remember, my mom would sleep all day every other weekend and my dad would often remind me to be quiet, play, but don’t make too much sound because mom needed her sleep. I 100% agreed with this and being an only child who could entertain herself from a young age, it was no problem. Can you see though that this instilled in me, from as early as I can remember, I could do whatever I wanted as long as it didn’t bother someone else. Again, in this case, I really wanted mom to sleep and I was still able to enjoy myself.

 

Fast forward several decades and I still find myself operating from this belief only now, I’m not so sure it honors me and what I want as much. A few months back, my washing machine just stopped working. Without skipping a beat, my spouse said “let’s just ask a neighbor if we can do laundry at their place”. I noticed I had stopped breathing for a moment. I was really confused by this because I know I would have no qualms doing it for a friend but I couldn’t quite figure out why I was reacting the way I was. Never mind that they would probably not think twice about it. For me, picturing bringing my dirty laundry to my friend’s house, using their washer and dryer for a few hours and being in their space for a few hours felt so uncomfortable. I ended up getting coaching on it because it just didn’t make sense. Turns out, I wholeheartedly believed I would be a problem for someone else. I would impede on their freedom by asking for what I needed.

 

I’ll pause here. What are you noticing for yourself? What comes up for you?

 

The belief in itself that you can do whatever you want, so long as it doesn’t bother anyone else isn’t bad and isn’t good. In many situations, it’s exactly what I want to hold as a sort of moral compass. This belief helps me to feel compassionate, kind and helps me to be thoughtful of others. I’m sure it does for you as well, at least some of the time. 

 

What about the times when it creates tension like a feeling of stuck, or maybe even self-abandonment. Do you give yourself permission to be who you want to be in this world, the same way you give it to others? 

 

Caveat here: I can only speak for myself here but as much as I would find myself holding others to certain standards and have ideas on how they should do things, ultimately, I believed being in their way was a far greater offense than whatever I was judging them about.  

 

Clearly, the washing machine situation is just one example but once I became aware of this beliefs I was carrying, I saw it everywhere. I’ve mentioned my love of dancing many times on the podcast. Well, I used to do it as much as I wanted to, with music blasting, only when I was alone in the house. I’m not saying you need to be excessively loud and disrespectful of others but what about the respect for yourself and your desires?

 

I now take up space in my home, even when others are home. I used to crave for everyone to be on their merry way because only then did I give myself permission to put on my music, dance, sing, all of it.

 

Sounds fun doesn’t it? Well it’s not just fun, it’s also liberating and it’s another way I support myself now. I can be respectful of others AND be respectful of myself, they don’t have to be mutually exclusive.

 

Where have you used this idea that you can be or do whatever you want, so long as it doesn’t bother anyone else to stop yourself from taking space, being yourself, owning who you are and respecting yourself?

 

Let those situations come to mind and really decide if that’s what you want to keep doing or not.

 

I’d love for you to do this exercise with me while keeping one of those situations in mind.

 

When you think of this situation, what are the ways in which you think you’d be a problem for the other person or people involved?

 

How do you know you’d be a problem for them?

 

Could you be a little wrong about that? Is there space for another option?

 

Let’s pause here for a moment. I want to provide another perspective here because I know it can be quite challenging when we’ve believed this story about ourselves that we could ever be a problem for someone else.

 

When you do something, say something, whatever it is. Those around you get to have their own opinion and judgements about it, they always will, and those thoughts about your behavior is what will make them feel one way or another, not your behavior. If it was your behavior, then everyone in the world would have to have the same belief and the same feelings about it. 

 

If you have siblings, you probably have firsthand experience with this. I’m sure there’s a moment from your childhood that you see one way and others around you see differently. One is not more true than the other, it’s all optional. 

 

The same is true for you, by the way. That means that other peoples’ behaviors do not dictate what you must think about it.

 

So this entire idea that you behaving a certain way that honors you could possibly be a problem for someone else is not a fact. I can’t promise that the other person won’t see it that way, that’s for them to manage. If it’s not a fact then you get to decide how you want to see it.

 

Sometimes, you’ll still want to hold yourself back, but let it be as a true expression of YOUR values and not as a blanket MO.

 

Next, I’d love for you to find your truth. Whether or not it’s true that your behavior could be a problem for someone else.

 

What do you deeply desire for yourself?

 

How can you embody that just a little?

 

How can you embody it even more?

 

If what you want is to respect them and yourself, you need to ask the question not only focused on them but on yourself as well.

 

Knowing what I deeply desire for myself and the respect I want to show this person, what are ways that I can respect us both?

 

There’s no one-size fits all solution here. Sometimes, you’ll want to compromise and my hope for you is that when you do so, you do it from a place of self-honor, not self-abandonment, from intention and not unexplored conditioning.

 

If you are noticing this theme in your life, know that this is the work I do with my clients as they learn to make those decisions in life that they love and that honor them and their values. No one outside of you will ever know what’s right for you. As your coach, I can help you figure these things out for yourself and help you develop the self-assurance to be yourself in this world. Be the gift that you are, not some perfect ideal version of yourself, but the real, authentic, and fulfilled you.

 

Until next time, love to each and every One!

 

 

Thank you so much for listening to The Enneagram One Project podcast, your go-to podcast for all things One.

 

If you were inspired by today’s topic and would like to make a project or goal for yourself that revolves around it, I’d love to support you in my coaching program.

 

We’ll use this project to help you become fierce at making decisions you love. It’s a win-win; you’ll reach your goals with more efficiency and become super solid in how you make decisions resulting in a quieter inner critic and more self trust.

 

For more information, head over to my website dominiquevandal.com look at the top of the page for the work with me tab. Can’t wait to meet you!

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