So many shoulds coming at us daily. Other people’s recipes for our lives flooding our heads. The shoulds of womanhood, motherhood, parenthood, successful people, healthy people, and intelligent people. Of good daughters and good citizens and good Christians.
Oh you know what the shoulds sound like. I should have a clean house, a balanced diet, and spiritual practice. I should have polite children, a health insurance plan, and an IRA account. Everywhere I turn, there is some spoken, or unspoken rule that tells me what I should be, say, and know. And I find it exhausting.
As former small people, we have a hard time doing what we are told we should do, even when the should comes from ourselves. So there we are with our own laundry list of shoulds and then we get the world adding to it. We should be skinny, we should be saving, and we should be up on current events.
But in the end, what we truly think is what matters. Do we trust ourselves to say, “No thank you, I don’t need to worry about being skinnier with the holidays coming up.” Or, “No thank you, I don’t care to worry about decorating the outside of my house when I need to clean the kitchen floor today.” It’s always our choice to decide what matters to us.
We get to throw out the shoulds that do not serve us and listen hard to the coulds that are in or hearts. We really should go see that movie before it leaves the theater but we feel like staying home and watching a movie on our own couch instead. Or, we really should finish reading the library book due tomorrow but instead we feel like cooking brownies with our kids.
What shoulds are you holding on to that you may be able to let go of for the holiday season? If you must, schedule your number one in your calendar and then gift yourself with a schedule of coulds instead.
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