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We have all been significantly influenced by the scripts given to us by our parents – both for good and for bad. These scripts are stored in our brain and they determine who we become as a man. Many of us carry a whole sackful of unhealthy behaviors and attitudes from our childhood into our adult lives. These life scripts are broken down into 3 main categories:

  1. Rules: All homes have rules. Some are healthy and appropriate; some are not. Some examples of such rules are:
  • Don’t think for yourself or form your own convictions
  • Don’t talk about anything that upsets your parents.
  • Be perfect, don’t make mistake.
  1. Roles: In some families, members are influenced to play certain roles.
Role
Tasks
Adult Behavior
Hero
Achieve success in school
Uphold family name
Overachieving
Perfectionism
Vulnerable
Rebel
Scapegoat
Trouble maker
Under-functioning
Irresponsibility
Difficulty with commitment
Caretaker (little Parent)
Highly responsible
Take care of family
Over-functioning
Workaholic
Frequent Exhaustion
Over-responsibility
  1. Recordings: These are the frequently used narratives that parent sometimes pass on to their children. For example “You should be ashamed of yourself!, You will never amount to anything, You can do anything you set your mind to, You’ll never learn, You are good for nothing, Why can’t you be more like (your sibling)?

STEPS TO TAKE CONTROL OF YOUR LIFE

  1. Re-write the Rules: As a first step in this process, many men find it helpful to talk honestly about their childhoods with their wives, mentors, or friends. It’s tough work rewriting the old rules, and we can expect a period of turmoil and even opposition, from within ourselves. But the payoff is knowing that we’re being “transformed by the renewing of our minds. The rule in some family is the fear of failure, fear of money, worry, shame, selfishness.
  1. Rescript the Roles:
  • The Hero has become addicted to achievement, recognition, and praise, given in exchange for superhuman accomplishment. To give up the Hero role means a decision to live without the regular fix of public praise. It means giving up the grandiosity that comes with believing you have no limits.
  • The rebel works hard to lower everyone’s expectations of his performance. Giving up the Rebel role means turning in all our excuses about under functioning and stepping back onto the playing field with the rest of the human race.
  • The caretaker lives for the appreciation of those he is helping and rescuing. Focusing too much on others and their needs becomes a good way to avoid focusing on his own needs.
  1. Reprogram Your Recordings:
  • Proverbs 23:7 says, “As he thinks within himself, so he is”. Sorting through the old distorted messages that play in our minds and steal our joy ranks among the most liberating acts of spiritual obedience we can perform. When we discard old messages and plug in the truth, we sense new freedom and experience fresh growth.
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