You should floss every night. You should exercise more. You should eat healthier food. You should see more of your friends. You should have a cleaner house. You should cook more meals. You should be making more money. You should be working harder. You should spend less time on Facebook. You should be returning more phone calls/emails. You should be having more sex. You should have a better handle on your finances. You should meditate. You should spend more time with your kids.
Does this sound familiar? Does it sound like your own internal monologue? It sounds a little bit like mine, and it’s exhausting. Every time a “You should…” makes it into my cerebral cortex it is accompanied by a shortening of my breath, a rounding of my shoulders, and a deepening of the wrinkle between my eyebrows. The “You should…” implies there is something wrong with me.
Sure, some could argue that this internal voice is motivating. For example, it can drive you to get an advanced degree, to ask for a raise, to join a gym, to make positive changes to your diet. But it can also bring pain. If we are always listening to and accommodating the “You shoulds…”, we are training our minds to always see what is lacking in our lives. We fail to recognize and appreciate what we have.
So, that is why I am letting go of everything that I should be doing and adopting a new mantra of ACCEPTANCE. And with that, comes a “letting go”. Letting go of control. The house is a little bit messier. The kids are eating more food from the freezer. My blog post is getting completed in the final hour. My email inbox is full. My brother is pissed at me because I’m not returning his phone calls.
But, guess what? I am right where I am supposed to be. Now, take a deep exhale…