Read this before you "Should" Yourself
Everything comes down to awareness and developing more of it.
At least that’s what I believe.
(If you come and work with me in my Breathwork and Mindset 1:1 Coaching program, you’ll learn that very quickly.)
Humans spend their lives trying to figure stuff out, learn things, have experiences, grow.
Without awareness, these things cannot be achieved.
One cannot ride a bike without awareness of balance, momentum and body placement.
One cannot bake a cake without awareness of the ingredients, the recipe, measurements, temperatures and time.
One cannot have an opinion without awareness of how they feel about something, and awareness of the subject they feel strongly about.
One cannot know love until they meet that special someone, and become aware of their attraction and chemistry.
One cannot feel joy until they are aware of what sadness feels like.
Awareness can be something you intentionally work on or it can be something that hits you all of a sudden.
That’s what a lightbulb moment is. Becoming aware of something.
That’s also what a spiritual download is. Becoming aware of something.
That’s definitely what an awakening is. Becoming aware of something
(although it’s probably feels like everything).
I have no doubt that you have experienced if not all of these things, at least one of these things.
Awareness is a beautiful thing.
But are you aware of your thoughts?
Often we feel the feelings and we react but we aren’t really aware of how our brain has all of these thoughts which led to you feeling those things.
But once you become aware, then you start to see the impacts.
You start to notice how your thoughts impact your emotions and how these emotions impact what you do and what you create in your life.
It’s really powerful work developing awareness and I know this is important to you or else you wouldn’t be here.
But how aware are you of
the thoughts you have about yourself and your life,
especially the ones that are now beliefs that are deeply ingrained in your subconscious, influencing your choices and your actions?
What about the words you use,
how aware are you of the language you speak
(to others and to yourself)?
Do you notice when you use any of the following words?
* have to
* don’t have a choice
* it’s not fair
* why does this always happen to me?
(only in superficial contexts. In contexts that refer to your genuine needs for things like rest, love or water when dehydrated are completely different)
Language is a beautiful thing and none of the words above are wrong, but we really have twisted their meanings in so many ways and we often use them against ourselves
(and others, but I’m focusing just on personal use today).
We can, and often do, manipulate, mistreat and abuse ourselves with the words we choose on a daily basis.
(In fact, a friend recently shared this beautiful Jay Shetty video about the words we speak to ourselves and how we would NEVER say them to someone we love and/or respect).
The words we speak that aren’t loving or supportive are the ones that keep us small and living as a victim.
They don’t see us living in our power.
Especially the “shoulds”.
So tell me,
how often do you “should” all over yourself?
“I don’t want to go to the gym tonight but I probably should because I didn’t go yesterday.”
“I really should visit my parents tonight, they’re expecting me.”
“I don’t want to get the covid jab but I should get it for the sake of others around me.”
“I’m so tired that I just want to lie down but I should take the kids out to their favourite play centre.”
“I really want to go hang out with my friends but I have so much work to do, I really should stay in and get it done.”
“I shouldn’t eat this candy. I know it’s so bad for me.”
Any of those sound familiar?
And did any of these “shoulds” cause you to react and feel an emotional response?
The thoughts we have around “shoulds” bring out some very low vibrational feelings like guilt, shame and fear.
(See if you can identify what came up for you when reading those examples above).
So now have a think,
“Are you aware of all the times you use the word should?”
Do you think it’s often? Sometimes? Never?
It took me a while to become aware of this, but once I did, I noticed how often should slipped out of my mouth.
And with all my “should-ing”, I also noticed how this word would cause me to beat myself up for my choices.
I would “should” and feel unworthy and not good enough.
I would “should” and feel like a disappointment to others, as if I was letting the team down.
I would “should” in fear of what might happen if I don’t do something in particular.
I would “should” and feel instant shame.
For me, it got to a point where
I had to stop “should-ing” all over myself!
I had to change the way I spoke about myself and my life.
When I made the decision to delete this word from my vocabulary, I didn’t realise how hard it was going to be at first.
I really did “should” all the time! 💩
Fast forward a few years and with awareness and practice, I have completely eliminated the word should from my vocabulary.
I refuse to use it.
(and if you ever catch me slip up and use it, I want you to call me on it!)
But seriously, I (almost always) catch myself before I say words like should, can’t, have to, must and more and
I want you to be able to do this too.
I have trained myself to feel them in my body before they come out of my mouth and reword them quickly to transform the thought, which transforms the feeling in my body.
And with time and practice, this is causing the rewiring of the neurons in your brain.
So words like should just no longer form part of your sentences when referring to yourself.
And so now, before I speak, I am aware.
I want to make it very clear to my brain what it is that I believe or want to believe.
Even when it’s hard to say.
Because when you delete “should,” you have to find a new way to express yourself.
So what happens?
YOU HAVE TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOURSELF!
You have to make the choice that feels right for you.
To do the thing you don’t feel like doing because you want to.
Or to not do it and respect that choice too, whatever the consequences.
You have to decide what’s important to you and whether you’ll push for what you want or do what society and the people around you tell or expect you to do.
And this may feel like a mind-fuck for a while and that’s ok too.
So what I like to do is reframe the “shoulds”, like this:
“I don’t feel like going to the gym right now but I want to go because I didn’t go yesterday. I know once I am there, I will feel proud of myself and my ability to stick to my goal. I know this work out will be great and I will have plenty of energy to get me through it.”
“I really don’t want to visit my parents tonight so I’m going to call them, tell them I love them but that I’m going to take a night to myself.”
“It doesn’t feel right for me to get the covid jab so I’m not going to do it, even if my work says that I have to. I know I can figure out another way but I am not doing something that doesn’t feel right in my heart.”
“I know I promised to take the kids out but I’m feeling really tired and I want to lie down. I will call someone and ask for help so that I can have a rest.”
“I really want to hang out with my friends tonight. I could definitely choose to stay in and do work but my heart is pulling me to go be with them. It will be ok. I will commit to getting up extra early tomorrow and do my work then.”
“I want to eat this chocolate bar so I’m going to savour every bite. In fact, I choose to believe that this snack has a positive effect on my body.”
My aim is to be as honest and open with myself as I can and I frequently have conversations with myself about what I’m thinking
(I journal these thought too).
And I’ll be honest with you… sometimes I don’t like my options/choices.
Sometimes I don’t want to take responsibility that day.
But once you take the “shoulds” out, it’s all on you.
There are no rights or wrongs in anything, it’s all just choice…
(and the opposite choice can apply to all of my above examples)
And guess what, these choices are all yours!
That’s true freedom right there!
(and that’s what most people are scared of).
Society has set up some pretty tough expectations for us and it’s well and truly time to stop caring what other people think and what other people want or expect from us.
You don’t have to be super woman if you want to rest.
You don’t have to be super mum.
You don’t have to make the same choices everyone else does.
You can prioritise rest, or spending time with loved ones, or doing something that people say you “shouldn’t” be prioritising.
You can put yourself first.
When you take the “shoulds” out, you get to choose.
But as I said, with this choice, comes responsibility.
And with responsibility can come some major feelings.
You may feel overwhelmed by all this responsibility
(so compassion is important here).
Or you may feel super empowered.
And all of that is ok too because it’s part of the journey towards the embodiment of you and the creation of your life.
A side note:
When you feel a “should” coming on, I encourage you to take a moment (during or post the moment) and
reflect on WHY you feel the way you feel.
Is it energy?
Are you feeling tired? And if so, why? That is, what else have you given all your energy to that you don’t have any left for yourself?
Is it stress?
(refer back to energy 👆🏻).
Is it crossing a boundary or belief you hold?
And have you been unwilling to step up and look at what it is you believe, truly want and/or feel?
Is it that you’re giving too much
and need to receive?
Is it fear
and if so, fear of what?
Don’t be afraid to dig deep to discover more.
This is awareness and the more of it you have, the more choice, freedom and power (and yes, responsibility) you have.
I don’t know about you but I’ll take some choice, freedom and power even if it comes with a whole plate of responsibility!
So going forward, I encourage you to be someone who enquires into your mind.
Journal what you notice.
Get really really curious, (without judgement).
Remember that often we only notice the automatic feeling.
We read something and react.
We speak to someone and get triggered and retaliate.
We hear something and feel the emotions bubbling up inside of us.
But can you actually become aware of the (multiple) thoughts you had before you reacted/retaliated/felt the bubbling of emotions?
And what were they about?
(I’m going to bet that none of them are true by the way… they’re always just a story that you tell yourself)
Make it your mission to know your thoughts and the stories you tell yourself.
Because it’s only once you’re aware that you can change them.
And when you’re ready for me to help you with that, know that I am here for you.
Click the button below to schedule a call with me and we can chat about how you can bring in more awareness to ultimately rewire your brain, change your life and allow you to feel true freedom.
Sending you love and deep awareness ❤️,
P.S.When you’re ready, click this button and book a chat with me. Let’s talk all things awareness, connection, presence and freedom.
P.P.S. Know someone who wants more awareness in their life? Please tell them about me, forward this post to them and change their life forever.
Thank you x