The Myth of “Should”

Ever wondered what this world would be like if we banned the word “should”?  I have, and I vote we do it! “Should” is a horrible restrictive word, when I say it to myself I can actually feel the energy around my heart constrict and I feel a mild wave of depression in my brain.  It’s not a nice feeling.

Now try the word “could”.  When I think the word “could” I feel curious, positive, opportunity, permission.  It also affects my brain only, I don’t feel my heart getting involved, or my organs – just my imagination, and it fires up possibility without the restrictive judgment of “should”.

Could is neutral, should is negative.

I should be more engaged at work.
I could be more engaged at work.

I should be making more money.
I could be making more money.

I should be a kinder/better/more spiritual person.
I could be a kinder/better/ more spiritual person.

I should….reflects failure, not doing well enough, not trying hard enough, like a finger wagging at you.
I could….reflects the possibility of more to come, of choice and of different strategies – there isn’t a feeling of failure but more an openness to change and try different things – it’s not personal and it’s not about you as a failure.

At the end of the day we all try our hardest, and even if we know we are not giving it our all, we are giving the best we can at the time – and that is good enough.

So next time you hear yourself saying “should” to yourself or to someone else, change it to a ‘could’ and feel the difference!


Article by Elaine Grundy, Reiki Master and Life Coach

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