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If You Understand These 5 Rules In Psychology, You Can Live A Much Easier Life

If You Understand These 5 Rules In Psychology, You Can Live A Much Easier Life

Understanding the psychology of ourselves and others around us can play a huge part in our happiness. We are all suffering from limiting beliefs gained from past experiences and interactions with others inhibiting the ease with which we live our lives. Whether it’s believing we aren’t good enough because we’re told we should be at a certain point in our lives by a certain time, bringing about feelings of failure, or simply misunderstanding others’ intentions or reactions to us, we need to get into a better mindset that will straighten out our perceptions and limit the amount of negativity that we see and think about ourselves.

Making a habit of using these psychological rules is crucial to living an easier life and will help you to see the world in a whole new light.

1. People Don’t Care As Much As You Think

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    It may sound harsh, but essentially it’s true. Being so caught up in what others think of us or acting in a way that will meet (what we think are) other people’s expectations is detrimental to us because everyone is wrapped up in their own problems and insecurities.

    It’s much better to try to keep this in mind, as most of what we believe people are thinking are only assumptions our own minds create based on past experiences or incorrect perceptions and interpretations. Being yourself without worrying what others think will go a long way in achieving personal happiness.

    2. We Are Constantly Changing Who We Are

    It’s easy to think that we are the same person we were ten years ago and will be thinking and feeling the same in another ten years, but we’re not. Our past, present and future selves are all essentially independent because our mindsets change with our lives’ circumstances and experiences.

    Because of this, we should always be true to our present selves when making decisions. We can never predict what our future self will think and feel, and everything that happened in the past was for our past selves. The power is all in the now.

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    3. Stop Comparing Yourself To Others

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      With social media pressuring many of us to post the best moments, it can be easy to start comparing ourselves to others’ seemingly ‘perfect’ lives. In real life, we still tend to show our best side to people rather than showing vulnerability out of fear of being judged or rejected.

      The truth is we are all vulnerable. We all want to be accepted by others. It is a huge waste of time to believe that people are somehow better than us and have their life sorted out, while seeing us for who we really are. Comparisons and feeling inferior to other people is futile because even the most powerful people have worries, insecurities and uncertainties inside them.

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      4. Don’t Assume Your Advice Will Be Listened To

      Ever seen a friend’s glaring problem and know what they need to do to sort it out? You give advice but it just seems to fall on deaf ears. You feel frustrated because, after all, you just want to help them. The thing is, no one ever really listens to advice unless they happen to be in the right mindset at the right time.

      At the end of the day, people will only change their mindsets or outlooks through their own realisations and experiences. Sometimes it may come in the form of your advice but most of the time it needs to happen for them at their own pace. Don’t feel ignored or disheartened – you did your bit, now let them work it out.

      5. You Can Only Control Your Response

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        How you react to a problem, event or situation is much more important than the situation itself. In life, attitude is everything in how happy you become overall. You can choose to react in a way that will ricochet throughout your future thoughts, feelings and emotions or choose to acknowledge a better way.

        In any negative situation, this can be hard, but remembering to take yourself out of it for a few seconds and reset your mind before reacting can help you train yourself to understand the possible repercussions for others and yourself.

        Featured photo credit: Julian Jagtenberg via pexels.com

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        Jenny Marchal

        A passionate writer who loves sharing about positive psychology.

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        Last Updated on May 7, 2019

        How to Detect a Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

        How to Detect a Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

        Work in any competitive field long enough, and you’re bound to run into a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It’s a powerful image. A shepherd watches over his flock to protect them from harm. He’d chase away any predator that tried to make its way into the flock. A clever wolf wearing the skin of a sheep as a disguise can sneak by the vigilant shepherd and get into the herd undetected.

        The story isn’t just a colorful description–it’s a warning to all of us to beware the wolf in sheep’s clothing. They may seem innocent, but they have ulterior motives. They’ll use different tactics to camouflage their intentions.

        The person who is kind to you, but undercuts you when you aren’t around is a wolf in disguise. A wolf in sheep’s clothing might pick your brain for ideas and then pass them off as their own to get a promotion. They’re always looking out for themselves at the expense of everyone around them.

        Wearing a Disguise Has Its Advantages

        People don’t go out of their way to manipulate others unless they’re getting something out of it. Hiding their intentions gives wolves the chance to manipulate other people to advance their own agenda. They know that what they’re trying to do wouldn’t be popular, or it might cause struggle if they presented themselves honestly.

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          They’ll be able to do what they want with less interference if they put on an act. By the time people figure out their true motives, the wolf has what it wants.

          Signs That Someone Is a Wolf in Disguise

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              1. They live to take power instead of empowering others. A wolf uses people as stepping stones to get the things that they want. They don’t care what happens to anyone else.[1] A wolf at work might make you look bad during a presentation to make themselves look amazing in front of the boss.
              2. Wolves seem sweet on the outside, but they’ll show you their teeth. If wolves revealed their true identity, people wouldn’t associate with them. They develop a friendly or kind persona, but they can’t keep up the act 24/7. Eventually, they’ll reveal their aggressive tendencies. A wealthy person who likes to break the law may make sizable charitable donations to convince people that they are kind and thoughtful. These donations largely keep them out of trouble, but if someone calls them out, they destroy that person’s reputation to stifle the criticism.
              3. They manipulate through emotions to get what they want. Wolves know that they can get ahead by appealing to your emotions. They find out what you want and need, and they give you just enough to keep you quiet and compliant. Imagine that your boss is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and you want to ask for a vacation. She might try to play on your guilt and feelings of insecurity to get you to skip vacation or take fewer days off.
              4. A wolf will charm you first. Wolves are experts at manipulating the people around them. They appear interested in whatever you’re doing, and you’ll get the impression that they care. After they get you where they want you, they do just enough to keep you on the hook. This is the coworker who may start out being your friend, but they end up dumping responsibility onto you. When they see that you are growing frustrated, they’ll surprise you with something to charm you some more. Then, they’ll continue to do whatever they want.
              5. Their stories are full of holes.  Calling a wolf out is the surest way to make them squirm. When this person tries to come up with a story, it won’t make much sense because they are improvising.[2] The classic example of this is the significant other that you suspect has cheated on you. When you ask them why they came home so late, they’ll either become upset with you, or they’ll make up a weak explanation.

              How to Spot a Wolf

                Know What’s Real So You Can Spot the Phony

                Do some homework so that you have as much of the story as possible before you work with them. Research how they respond in certain situations, or give them hypothetical problems to see how they respond.

                A job applicant might tell you that she’s always positive and thinks of herself as a team-player. That’s what every employer wants to hear. During the interview you ask applicants to work in groups to solve a problem to see how they handle the situation. The applicant “positive team-player” is bossy and negative. You’ve spotted the wolf.

                A wolf will tell you something that ultimately benefits them. Gather evidence that proves or disproves their position, and see what happens. Chances are, when you choose the side that supports their agenda, they’ll act like your best friend. If you disagree, they’ll become aggressive.

                Spotting a potential wolf–especially if you are one of the sheep–can present you with some challenges. If your gut tells you that a wolf is lurking among all the other sheep, pay attention, and make sure you take the next step.

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                Ask Questions, the More the Better

                There’s nothing wrong with asking questions to uncover the truth. The safety of everyone in your group is at risk. Since wolves often make up stories, you may be able to call them out when their tales lack details.

                When they state an opinion, ask “Why do you think that?” or “How do you know it’s like that?” They’ll have trouble coming up with enough information to pull off the lie.

                Since wolves are always pretending to be something they aren’t, they don’t usually have a clearly thought-out reason for what they say. In a debate, they won’t understand the root of an issue.

                They may also tell you what they think you want to hear, but when pressed for more information, they won’t have anything to add. Their knowledge is superficial. No matter how much you try to encourage discussion, they will not be able to carry on a conversation about the subject.

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                Wolves Are Everywhere

                As much as we want to believe that everyone has the best intentions, it isn’t always the case. Some people only do things to benefit themselves, and they don’t care who they hurt in the process.

                Wolves in sheep’s clothing can be found in almost every setting. You can’t get rid of them, but if you can spot them, you can avoid falling into their traps.

                Reference

                [1] Association of Biblical Counselors: Three Ways to Spot a Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
                [2] Power of Positivity: Beware of a wolf in sheep’s clothing

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