Have you ever felt like you should be doing something, even though you don’t really want to? Maybe you feel like you should exercise more, or you should spend more time with your family, or you should be able to do work faster. These “shoulds” can be overwhelming and can lead to a sense of guilt or failure when you don’t live up to them. They can also affect your physical and mental health. In this post, we’ll explore why we have “shoulds” and how we can eliminate them to live a more authentic life.
Why Do We Have Shoulds?
“Shoulds” are often internalized messages we receive from society, culture, family, and even ourselves. They can come from a variety of sources, such as media messages, peer pressure, or societal norms. These messages can be so pervasive that we internalize them without even realizing it. Over time, these “shoulds” become a part of our belief system and influence our behaviour.
For example, we may feel like we should be thin because that’s what we see in the media. Or we may feel like we should own a certain house to keep up with our friends. These “shoulds” can be limiting and prevent us from living a life that is true to ourselves.
How to Eliminate Shoulds
Eliminating the “shoulds” in our lives can be challenging, but it’s an important step towards living a more authentic life. Here are some strategies to help you eliminate the “shoulds” and live a life that is true to you:
- Identify Your “Shoulds”: The first step is to identify the “shoulds” in your life. Start by making a list of all the things you feel like you should be doing, even if you don’t really want to. This might include things like exercising, eating a certain way, or making a significant purchase.
- Challenge Your Beliefs: Once you’ve identified your “shoulds,” challenge the beliefs that underlie them. Ask yourself why you feel like you should be doing these things. Notice which beliefs are most limiting for you.
- Use Logosynthesis: Choose one “should” to work on at a time and use this powerful, repeatable technique to shift the energy in the belief. When the energy shifts, the belief softens in intensity and stress falls away. You feel calmer and the pressure eases. You can now see options and resources.
- Practice Self-Compassion: It took a lifetime to create your beliefs. Eliminating the “shoulds” in your life doesn’t happen overnight, but layer by layer, results can be transformational. It’s important to be kind and compassionate to yourself along the way. Be patient with yourself and celebrate small victories.
- Surround Yourself with Supportive People: Surrounding yourself with people who support and encourage you to be true to yourself can be a powerful tool in eliminating the “shoulds” in your life. Seek out friends and family members who share your values and support your goals.
Eliminating the “shoulds” for more ease
Eliminating the “shoulds” in your life reduces stress and unlocks your potential. More of your energy is available for what is important! It’s not always an easy process, but it’s a worthwhile one. By paying attention to when and where the word “should” appears in your everyday life, you can resolve the beliefs that get in the way!