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I should… no, I could!

 “Guilt is defined as internalized anger over perceived and unwanted obligations.”
-- Lloyd J. Thomas

In my experience, there’s nothing like “I should …” to bring a heaviness to life. In fact, when I think I should, must or have to do anything, it’s a no win situation. If I do whatever it is, I feel resentful and burdened. If I don’t do it, I feel guilty.

Recently, I learned of an easy but powerful tool for dealing with this trap.

When I catch myself thinking that I should do or be something, I replace ‘should’ with ‘could.’

“I should clean the house” becomes “I could clean the house.” There’s new freedom of choice in this expression. I can then ask, “Do I want to?” There are two answers:

“No” – I’m consciously choosing not to clean the house now.
“Yes” – I know I’ll feel better when the house looks better, so I’m consciously choosing to do this for both the house and myself.

Whatever my decision, of course, I will have to live with the consequences. But the key here lies in claiming my power to choose. With awareness, I can consciously choose my course of action rather than stay trapped in old autopilot patterns that keep me feeling victimized. It’s empowering!

~ Patrice

“A life of reaction is a life of slavery, intellectually and spiritually. One must fight for a life of action, not reaction.”
-- Rita Mae Brown

“It’s so hard when I have to. And so easy when I want to.”
-- Sondra Anice Barnes 

A Reminder
Weekly Re-Treat Yourself Process
– Take time to focus on goals, balance and peace of mind.

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John & Patrice Robson
John & Patrice
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