Updated: May 22
“You should wear the stylish thing and the newest fad.”
“You should act accordingly.”
“You should go to college or university.”
“You should be like everyone else and stay status quo.”
“You should do the 9-5 and not go outside the box.”
“ You should be _________.”
"You should weigh a certain amount."
"You should love a certain person."
“You should, you should, you should……..”
Man I am sick of the shoulds, aren't you?
What would life be like if you didn't follow everyone else's opinion on what you should do in YOUR life? Imagine what would happen if we didn't listen to others about how to make YOU happy. I hate to break it to you, but only YOU know what makes YOU happy and allowing someone else to tell you what makes you happy is absurd. Anyone that has the case of the shoulds are in no position of giving you advice on how to live YOUR life.
Why are we so afraid of being different? Why are we so afraid of standing out?
This blog has been a long time coming as people have been “shoulding” all over the place when it comes to how live my life and probably yours too. I am hoping this will help you deal with those shoulders and get them to should somewhere else.
I know that fear and the dang ego keeps us in this mentality. Playing it safe means we don't take risks. Having a cookie cutter definition of life makes it easier for people to live. Knowing what to expect, how to act and where to go promotes a sense of safety, but man it can be so suffocating. Not to mention debilitating. It forces us to live a false life, ignoring the things that truly make us US and pushing the things that makes us happy to the side just to fit in.
So many people don't go for things because of these shoulders. They say no to things that could change their lives. They decline experiences that could help them grow. They opt for the known but miss out on the amazing opportunities that come with the unknown. They are so comfortable being uncomfortable that it has become their norm. You know what I mean. Stuff all those feelings deep down and convince yourself that living way you are is just peachy. And you wonder why so many people are miserable?
Classic case of the should-ers.
The sad part is that there is always someone who is telling you what you should or should not do. And no, I am not talking about that awesome, true friend who offered constructive criticism and helps you see a different perspective because we all need that person. No I am not talking about your roles in your job or how you should act on the plane because there are places where we need “shoulds.” I am talking about the dream killers, the negative nellies, the meanie that tells you that you shouldn't`t wear your fav t-shirt or the person person who is always doubting your fire and dulling that sparkle of yours.
So first of all, if you are a should-er, stop shoulding on your friends. They deserve better and nobody got time for a chronic should-er.
Instead, support them, encourage them and help them go for what they want in life instead of shoulding all over their dreams. Yes, you can offer advice, a different perspective and even constructive criticism but don't should on them with restricted views, limiting beliefs, jealousy and cookie cutter ideas.
If you have should-ers in your life, you gotta take a stand and put a stop to their shoulding. The cookie cutter life, the "norm", the "must fit in era" is becoming a thing of the past and living life according to YOUR values and what makes you happy is IN…. Thank god.
If you read this and still can't stop shouding, I hope your shoulds sound like this…
You should follow your dreams.
You should do what makes you happy.
You should sign up for that kick boxing class.
You should live your best life as corny as that sounds.
You should do what makes your soul shine.
You should start that business.
You should be brave and try something new.
You should get real about boundaries.
You should surround yourself with amazing people that support you.
You should wear that fav t-shirt of yours that makes you feel like a rockstar.
IF you are gonna should, make sure those shoulds set you up for success rather than tear you down and hold you back from being your awesome self, `cause YOU ARE AWESOME, just the way you are!
Your optimistic shoulder.