Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Frame - who's is it anyway...

So, I finally decided to get Rollo's book "The Rational Male" and have been reading through it.  If you read his blog, then you "know" what's primarily in the book - but it's really good to have it all in one place, instead of hunting through blog posts.  All in all, I would highly recommend it - also, you do get all the Iron Rules in one convenient location - which is not easy to do through the internet.

That said, the book sparked a couple thoughts/realizations for me.  The first is all about "Frame" - which is one of those simple, yet complex topics.  The following is from the book...
Iron Rule of Tomassi #1 Frame is everything. Always be aware of the subconscious balance of who’s frame in which you are operating. Always control the Frame, but resist giving the impression that you are.Tomassi, Rollo (2013-09-30). The Rational Male (p. 209) Kindle Edition. 
After this, he goes on to explain a bit about what Frame is...
In psychological terms, frame is an often subconscious, mutually acknowledged personal narrative under which auspices people will be influenced. One’s capacity for personal decisions, choices for well-being, emotional investments, religious beliefs and political persuasions (amongst many others) are all influenced and biased by the psychological narrative ‘framework’ under which we are most apt to accept as normalcy.Tomassi, Rollo (2013-09-30). The Rational Male (p. 209) Kindle Edition. 
Based upon this, I started thinking of the past few years - I married in 1995 (we had hot steamy sex, she got pregnant, I married her), but really, it was about 2003 that the shit hit the fan and I completely lost any "frame" within my marriage.  Prior to that time, it was a tug-o-war between who's Frame was dominant, to give myself some credit, I believe it was at least 50/50.  In 2003, my professional life was in the shitter, finances were less than zero, and my wife decided to seek government assistance (food stamps), and told me I had to move out - that was the beginning of the end.

Within a month, I gave up the business I had been working on for the past 2 years and found a job with a paycheck (no benefits) that would pay the bills.  I moved back in with my family after about 6 weeks of being gone.  When I came back - there was no illusion about who's Frame we were living in - it was her's.  There were times between 2003 and 2011 where it was my Frame, but it was no longer an even split.  I had relegated myself to the boiler room, stoking the furnaces, ensuring what had happened, never happened again.  I was riddled by guilt for putting my family in such a position - I questioned every decision I had made during the marriage, and basically gave her full decision making power going forward.

So, it's no wonder that she lost attraction for me, that she eventually moved out and we are now divorced.  I understand, how both the small things prior to that time and huge tectonic shift that happened in 2003 - created a marriage that was not going to work in the long run.

Now fast forward to today...after reading about this in the book, I realized I am still living within her Frame - the majority of decisions I've made since she moved out have been made or influenced by my thought of "how it would affect her" or "what she would think" or a dozen other "thoughts" around the decision tree of  "If I do this, what will she do/think/feel..." -- up until that light bulb when off in my head, I hadn't realized how indoctrinated I've been in her Frame, how I allowed myself to not be the full owner and director of my life.  So, in response, here is my thought concerning the 1st Iron Rule of Tomassi...
If you are evaluating or obsessing about how someone else will react, think, feel, say, do or behave, in relationship to what you want to do and the decisions you are making (or will make), you are living in their Frame, not yours.
Now, that doesn't mean you live your life without any thought to other people (although it may), but if you are constantly thinking of others and not yourself in relationship to what you want, and then adjusting your life based upon them, then you are living within someone else's Frame.  I could be anyone's...your parents, your children, your wife, your friends, your employer, your church, society at large.  We all live within a construct - and within that construct there are "rules" or laws - but outside of breaking those, everything else is a value judgement.  I also believe, we all have our own personal code of ethics, I just need to look at those and determine which of those are "mine" and which of those have been "given to me" by someone else.

Frame simple as a concept, but takes effort to remain aware of within your own life.

Eyes front Gentlemen.  Live, Learn, Lead.

1 comment:

  1. The easiest way to live in your own frame is to be selfish.

    Wald

    ReplyDelete

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