At this point it is safe to assume that anyone who has kept pace with many of the social, cultural and in more recent times, political developments in the West, for the past half a decade or so, would be familiar with the name: Jordan Peterson.
The Canadian clinical psychologist ‘rose to fame’ in a manner of speaking, in the debates surrounding the use of pronouns as it relates to certain members of the LGBTQ community.
From there Dr. Peterson’s popularity surged thanks to his lectures on Christian Scriptures, and human psychology, which commanded tremendous views on various social media platforms.
And importantly for our discussion, his focus is on personal development.
There might be another time to delve into the life and works of the psychologist turned self-help guru, turned public speaker, turned political commentator. Amongst many other things.
Suffice it to say that today, Dr. Jordan Peterson is one of the most recognized public intellectuals and one the most respected (or hated) voices in Western culture.
His ideas and commentary are being heard the world over and especially in the West.
One of the main selling points of his work (literally and figuratively) has been his best-selling book: 12 Rules for Life. A book that was published in 2018. A book that hit the top 10 upon publication and has pretty much remained there ever since.
This is no mean feat.
The enduring popularity of the Canadian psychologist turned public intellectual to social commentator, with a massive social media following in the high millions, what Dr. Peterson has achieved is considerable.
Notable here is the appeal of his message and his way of speaking among the masses of men in the West. Who, as we mentioned countless times, are badly in need of leadership. Men-specific leadership.
Now for those who have read the book and like it, and critically got something of value from it, that is great! More power to you.
For those who did read the book (at least most of it) and got something for it, but felt there could have been more… Then this post might be for you.
And those who did read it, and came away feeling a bit confused, unfulfilled: The sense that the book about ‘rules’ could have actually contained some concrete rules. That is a list of things that one could follow programmatically in a very logical way. Then this post is for you.
To be clear, this is NOT to say that JP’s best-selling book does not contain actual rules for people to follow. The trouble is that, especially from the standpoint of our fast-paced world, it tends to become overlong with a variety of subjects and mediations thrown into the mix.
Also, unlike what we have put together, the target audience is a bit all over the place. Our focus at Bulldog Mindset is primarily on helping men.
So here are 12 Rules for Life from Bulldog Mindset. Our answer to chaos and a few other problems affects the lives of men in the modern world.
Rule 1: Take Responsibility for Your Life
Look around you. Do you like what you see?
If the answer is ‘Yes’. Then great. You have done yourself well.
If the answer is ‘No’. Then guess what you still have only yourself to thank. Or wait is it… blame!?
I mean look, no one likes to take all the blame for all that is gone wrong in their lives.
When things are not the way they are, when the life that you have built (or have failed to) is not the one you had wished it was, there is a natural inclination to pass that blame onto someone.
Someone or something other than you. It is tempting, It is natural. Dare, I say, it is kinda inevitable. But Bulldog Mindset’s Rule 1 is to take responsibility. Take responsibility for your life: the good the bad, the ugly, and everything in between.
We know this is hard. Heck, at times it seems almost impossible.
Especially if you are a victim of harm: someone who has been hurt, cheated, or worse. But the point remains.
Why? Well because, if you don’t take responsibility for life, meaning everything in it, you will not be able to implement the second rule. Consider this a key stepping stone.
Rule 2: Reject the Victim Mindset
An argument can be made that this could have been the first rule.
However, from the standpoint of the human mind, especially one that is hurting, filled with remorse, and regret; the idea of casting out the state of mind that feels one is the victim of circumstances, from the outset, is too much for anyone.
So Rule 2: of Bulldog Mindset’s answer to chaos, and to pretty much any other challenge you may be facing in your life is to reject the mindset of a victim. This is a serious point.
And it cannot be fully explained in the course of a few sentences. For that, we will recommend you take a look at our YouTube channel. Which is all about overcoming this negative state of mind and rising to a higher level.
For now, it is important to understand that at the end of the day, you are in control of your life.
No matter how limited, or weak that level of control is, ultimately you have the power to decide what you can or cannot do with…what goes in your mind.
Let’s face it. No one is ever fully in control of their lives.
Heck, we’re all mortal. So there is that thing. And when it comes to our careers or school or even our homes, there is some kind of authority you have to answer to. And yes, that includes those self-made men (i.e. the IRS).
Considering that there is only that much a man can do, given the limits of his mind, resources, and abilities; thus he has to accept reality for what it is.
But that does NOT mean that one must be affected by them. This is a deep point. But the principle is that you must find a way, inside yourself to not feel like the victim of your circumstances. Even if you are!
And if you are, you must work towards a way of getting out of it asap. This takes us to rule number three.
Rule 3: Make Financial Freedom a Life Goal
Money talks. Money buys happiness. Money is power.
These are some of the (negative) talking points that we have come to hear about and thus associate with money.
Given that such opinions about money aren’t all necessarily good; it does leave a question mark or more in the minds of people. Especially for young men who are aspiring to build something for themselves.
The bad rap that money gets in the modern world is a rather curious thing. Considering that to do anything of significance in the real world, you need money. No two ways about it.
The fact that hundreds of millions of people around the world go to work every day and drone on for around 40 hours or more per week in a job they generally don’t like (though this trend is now shifting for various reasons) tells you a little about the importance of cold hard cash!
The trouble for a lot of people, especially for a lot of men who are coming through the ranks from school and tertiary education is that the principle of money (i.e. its importance to life) is never clearly emphasized.
Whilst getting a job and making money in order to ‘make a living’ might be spoken of, the centrality of money to the sacred concept of freedom is rarely ever mentioned. This needs to change.
As a man of purpose who wishes to do something meaningful with his life, and to have a degree of control over his future, money, and specifically financial security, must be recognized.
The question is, is this a compelling proposition in your life today?
Does your life philosophy place adequate importance on the importance of financial freedom?
If the answer is yes, what are you doing about it?
Rule 4: Watch What you Eat
OK, we admit it. We are not the first ones to come up with this rule.
One can potentially accuse us that Bulldog Mindset’s Rule 4 for life, is a twist of ‘You are What you Eat’.
True. But only to an extent.
Taking a step back, the principle of maintaining control over your eating habits is a fundamental factor when it comes to maintaining good health.
However, with respect to food, an equally important point is that of self-control.
To put it simply if you don’t have control over what goes inside your mouth: how often, how long, and in what quantities, it is fair to guess that you are not going to get very far when it comes to other goals in your life.
You see, eating, and more fundamentally food is a need. We eat in order to survive. But eating is not meant to be an end in itself.
The practice of eating when one ‘feels like it’ is arguably the main factor fuelling the rise in obesity rates in the United States and in other parts of the developed world.
For it builds on the easy access to food-a luxury that results from living in a developed nation-but also on the lack of willpower when it comes to controlling one of the most basic of urges.
And if one succeeds in controlling or better managing this urge, then many other aspects of life: From work to fitness (naturally) and relationships will start working better.
Why? Because self-control is the key foundation of the next main rule.
Rule 5: Discipline your Mind
A more general principle than a rule, but what it comes down to is the importance of you being in control of what your feelings and think, rather be controlled by them.
A foundational rule one could say, one that underpins all of the other rules that we have engaged so far.
Bulldog Mindset’s Rule No: 5 of Disciplining on your Mind, lays the groundwork for what you do when it comes to virtually all aspects of your life.
In other words, to follow the rule of disciplining your mind requires that you follow the first 5 rules:
Taking responsibility for your life.
Rejecting the Victim Mindset
Watching what you Eat
And Making Financial Freedom a Life Goal
For when your mind is aligned towards these objectives, your control over your thoughts, passions, and feelings grows stronger.
You start to learn that You are in control of your feelings and it is not the other way around. In turn, those who wish to discipline their mind can do so by following a set of principles such as:
Reading good books
Walking or Running Outdoors
These practices in turn will strengthen your mind, powering you to go forward and follow the first four rules that make up the list.
Consider Rule 5 as the start or midway of a positive circle.
Rule 6: Stand up for Yourself
In life, you either stand your ground and stick to what you believe is right or you get rolled over and be removed or replaced by someone better.
It is a tough world out there.
No matter all the positive advice and guidance that is given to people about being self-aware, knowing your limits, and avoiding conflict, the fact of life is that at some point you will be called to stand your ground. And possibly, fight for it!
The question is are you able, and willing to do so?
Look at it this way: when one speaks of standing one ground it does, at least not necessarily, imply a sense of combativeness:
The idea of I’m ready for a fight just brings it on! Attitude, whilst seemingly tough on the outside, at a deeper level, is actually a sign of lingering weakness.
For EVEN if the person in question is a big/well-built guy who knows kicking boxing or has had some kind of combat training, that would not necessarily make him a fighter in spirit.
At least one who is able to step out of this comfort zone and face down the opposition.
What we are talking about here is the mindset question that pertains to the ability to stand for and if absolutely necessary, fight for what you believe is right.
To break this down a bit. As we are dealing with a rather serious subject matter.
When we speak about standing up for what is right and having the capacity and the will to act on it, when the time arrives, we are NOT telling you, especially if the reader happens to be a young man, to find a cause they believe in strongly and then pick up arms to achieve its ends.
That would be pretty bad advice.
The core principle we are discussing is that in relation to your personal and professional life, one that seeks betterment for yourself at the physical and mental levels, and for those around you, the reality of being able to stand up for what you believe in is a necessary attribute you need to have.
If you don’t then it is high time your directed your efforts at developing it.
And how do you do it? That is, to develop the kind of mindset that makes you a man of principle: One who is not willing to give ground in the face of adversity and will not back down for a genuinely good, cause.
Well, you attain that mindset by following the first 5 Rules!
Where to From Here?
All this may sound simple enough. But that is only the start. For the rule of standing up for yourself also comes with the element of responsibility.
To summarize this point here, as it is a major one: when it comes to standing up for yourself, that is when you acquire the power and ability to face up to your fears, confront forces hostile to you: emotional and physical, you take on a new sense of responsibility.
You may not know this but a lot of men out there, arguably the vast majority, are not living a life free from fear, with the strength to face the unknown.
A lot of men, despite their outward show of strength, wealth, and competence are actually rather fearful beings. Men who live in fear of their spouses, their bosses, and even their friends. And of course, enemies, real or imagined.
When it comes to the Rule of standing up for yourself, what it comes down to, at a deeper level is the ability to face your fears directly and use them as an opportunity to grow.
This is what separates the losers from the winners.
This is the true antidote to chaos. But my friend, we are only halfway there! In the next post, we will discuss the next 6 Rules for Life. In the meantime, if you are serious about getting started on your journey toward masculine freedom, financial stability, and the mindset of a winner, get on a free call with us, to map out a road map to freedom!
Best of luck.