“Many of us have been “should on” in the past,
and now, we’re full of should,
and we are very good at
shoulding on others,
and even worse,
at shoulding on ourselves!”
Should is a stop think word that works well when we are wanting to make rules and laws.
If we are trying to build a relationship then we may want to think twice before telling ourselves or others what they should think, say, or do. (note: ought, must, need to, gotta, supposed to, and have to – are should type words too.)
I found a web page for new moms dealing with the shoulds. The tips could be adapted for other situations I think. The author wrote:
“New moms: if you’ve been feeling like you should do something a certain way but just aren’t sure, try to calm “the shoulds” by considering these questions.
Does it make a big difference for baby? Feeding methods matter a lot. Paint color in the nursery doesn’t. Save your mega brain power for the important decisions.
Does it work for your family? Cloth diapers are a great product, but I’m not sure how practical they are for a working mom with baby in day care five days a week. Plus, I know diapers are gross no matter what, so do we really need to make it worse by increasing contact with the mess? Do what works for YOU and don’t feel guilty about it.
What does your gut tell you? Maybe your best friend has had all three of her kids in this one daycare and she can’t stop talking about how wonderful it is. But when you visited, something just didn’t seem quite right about it. Go with your instincts. It’s okay to do something differently!”