We all have Fred Stories.
The question isn’t if we have ‘em.
Rather, a better question to ask is can you recognize when they’re controlling your behaviors unconsciously, and are those…
…automatically triggered behaviors serving or sabotaging you?
What makes Fred so complicated is we’ve lived with his narrative for so long, it’s become embedded into the fabric of what we’ve convinced ourselves is reality. It’s absolute, and therefore invisible to your conscious mind. Yet it’s a covenant your unconscious lives by.
At one point it was very conscious, and now we’re blind to their control.
Maybe this’ll click for you with an example from my life.
Guess I was about 10 or 11 when it happened. I was excited because it was one of the rare times when my dad actually kept his promise for a weekend of father-son time (which was supposed to be every other weekend, but was more like 2 times a year).
Anyway, that’s why I was pumped.
Dad bought me my first 10 speed bike and we were going upstate to escape New York City for a weekend of biking. Just dad and me.
Turns out dad tacked on biking with me because it was a good cover for his true plans. Surprise, surprise, dad had an ulterior motive for our weekend. After all the times he broke his word, I should’ve seen it coming. Only I didn’t.
See, the real reason we were going upstate was because that’s where he got the kilos of drugs he was dealing to supplement his income as a professional musician.
Now, all that is bad enough, but that’s not what wrote the new Fred Story that would shape my life.
It was way, way worse.
What happened next is what did it.
Dad pulls over the car on some winding country road, in the middle of nowhere. I assumed this was the beginning of our bike trip. I was half right. Because he unloads my bike but not his.
He tells me he’ll be back soon. Guess we had different definitions of “soon” because left there for hours.
When he finally comes back, you know what he tells me as an explanation to make it right?
He says he left me there to “protect” me. Because if I was picked up and questioned I wouldn’t know anything. Seems kinda logical, and even a bit noble, doesn’t it?
Maybe. That is until I pressed him by saying,
“I would never drop a dime on you, dad.”
Because what he said next put things in a whole new light.
He tells me, that he wasn’t talking about if I got questioned by the police. No, what he was trying to “protect” me from was if a rival dealer picked me and tortured me I wouldn’t be able to give away the location of the supply house.
I mean, really?
Even at 11 years old, I saw the complete flaw in his fatherly protection.
Regardless of what I knew or didn’t know, I was still gonna get tortured anyhow. Some protection. What a crock.
Stunned doesn’t come close to describing the disappointment I felt. For the first time, I wished he’dda just canceled on me 20 mins before, as usual. At least that would’ve spared me the pain of finding out he thought I was expendable.
Obviously, this experience had repercussions that cut deep. And helped form my worldview, and even my identity was shaped in ways I’ve only recently come to understand —
Some 40 odd years later.
Like, for example, the reason I find it hard to ask others for help is because if my dad couldn’t be trusted, how could anyone else? It’s also why, when I do finally ask for support, I expect to be left holding the shit end of stick. So, of course, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy where my fears of getting stabbed in the back trigger my habitual behaviors that ends up blowing up any chances of my actually getting the support I’ve asked for, right?
Which reinforced feelings of abandonment. Then the, “what’s wrong with me?” spiral fed the core, “I must be unlovable,” foundation that —before discovering how to RnD (Recognize & Dissolve) Fred— was the governing force of my identity.
Anyway, the point is, from an early age, this conditioned me to believe I could not rely on anybody but myself.
It helped me define money as being freedom. I decided that if I was rich, I’d have control over my life and never be that scared, powerless little kid abandoned on the side of the road.
Is any of this rational? No, of course not.
It’s insanely irrational. Yet, those inner narratives (Fred Stories) became like an invisible Operating System, if you will…
…an OS I didn’t have a clue controlled every aspect of the “rules” I unconsciously lived by…
…an OS I didn’t know was limiting my beliefs about what’s possible…
…an OS that rewired and hard coded all the things I believed I could be, do or have (what I was worthy, deserving and capable of).
Oh, and let’s not forget infinitely longer list of things this OS said I was unworthy, undeserving and would never be allowed to enjoy.
The good news?
Any part of your Operating System that isn’t serving you can be RnD’d.
And, the even better news?
After RnD’ing Fred, you can RnR (Replace & Reinforce) so it hard-codes a new OS of your deliberate intent, and…