Today we are going to talk about a “dirty word” that was not part of the list of words our parents warned us not to use growing up – the word 𝒔𝒉𝒐𝒖𝒍𝒅.
Should is a word rooted in negativity, pressure, and guilt. Nothing good comes from it, and it often takes us and our brains down roads we really don’t want to be going.
“I should be better at this”.
“I should be riding more”.
“I should be able to do this”.
Or the inverse of should – shouldn’t:
“I shouldn’t be finding this so hard”.
“I shouldn’t be feeling this way”.
When we think we “should” do something, it’s because society or someone else has made us believe it’s the right thing to do. It’s not always what we want to do.
Should creates unnecessary guilt, a feeling of inadequacy or “not enough”. Should belittles our choices, and breeds insecurity.
Should implies that there is only one path for us all. Everyone’s reality and life are different. There is no one path, and there can even be multiples routes to the exact same destination.
It’s time to remove the word “should” from our vocabulary – when talking to ourselves, and to others. Remember just as no one has a right to tell us how to live our lives, we don’t have a right to tell others how to live theirs either.
The next time you find yourself using the word “should”, try the following:
𝟭. 𝗙𝗼𝗰𝘂𝘀 𝗼𝗻 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗯𝗲𝗻𝗲𝗳𝗶𝘁 𝘁𝗼 𝘆𝗼𝘂.
“I should be riding five days a week” = “Riding an extra day a week will get us both fitter for that event”. If there’s no clear benefit, “should” you be doing it?
𝟮. 𝗥𝗲𝗽𝗹𝗮𝗰𝗲 𝘄𝗶𝘁𝗵 “𝗰𝗼𝘂𝗹𝗱”, 𝗲𝘀𝗽𝗲𝗰𝗶𝗮𝗹𝗹𝘆 𝘄𝗵𝗲𝗻 𝘀𝗽𝗲𝗮𝗸𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝘁𝗼 𝗼𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗿𝘀.
“You should be jumping bigger classes” = “You could definitely jump the higher class!”.
𝟯. 𝗔𝗰𝗰𝗲𝗽𝘁 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗲𝗺𝗯𝗿𝗮𝗰𝗲 𝗿𝗲𝗮𝗹𝗶𝘁𝘆.
Spending time thinking about what you are not, only takes away from what you are. “I should be better at this” = “I’m committed to working hard to improve this”.
I am committed to removing “should” from my vocabulary.