Madeleine Eames

- Psychotherapist
- Mindfulness Teacher

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Are you unconsciously shoulding?

Hello dear friends. I have a confession: this blog post is a re-post from last year.  It was a super popular one for the same reason I am posting it again….because we all ‘should’ on ourselves!

 

“Be careful how you are talking to yourself because you are listening”

Lisa M. Hayes

 

I should exercise, I should read more, I shouldn’t be impatient, I should be doing more…. how do I feel after writing that? Pretty darn down and disempowered. We are what we choose to focus on, and if you focus on what you SHOULD be doing, either do it or stop shoulding on yourself. We cannot be present in our lives if we are in some imaginary should-land. It leads us to compare ourselves which only takes us down the road of despair.

Shoulding is something I hear very often…. and where does this usually leave the shoulder? Depressed and anxious. Why is it that we feel if we only berate, criticize and are hard on ourselves that we will motivate ourselves to do more and feel better?  Would we talk to other people this way, and how would it make them feel? Research actually shows us the opposite… people who are kinder, more compassionate towards themselves feel better… and are no less motivated, but my guess is that what they are motivated to do is for the good of themselves and others. When we come from the heart as opposed to the head we tend to do what feels right for us.

Try this now… instead of should, try COULD. I could exercise, I could read more, I could be patient…. OR I could choose to do something else if I wanted to.  Wow… that feels more empowered, like I have so many choices I don’t know which one to pick, and I am fully capable of doing them all.   Well, I better get on with it then…….

Have a great week and pretty please… change those shoulds to coulds….. give yourself the choice.

 

“We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them”
― Albert Einstein

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