Archive for the ‘Recent Presentations’ Category
Thanks to everyone who attended our June 21st Seminar. We were honoured by your presence and excited by your positive energy.
I have had several requests to re-produce the article that I read at the presentation entitled:” Things I Should(n’t) Be Doing.”
Here it is in its entirety:
by Diane White, Boston Globe
I live in the obligatory.
I spend most of my conscious hours thinking about what I should, or shouldn’t be doing instead of whatever it is I am doing.
In the morning, when I wake up, the first think I do is tell myself I should have gotten up earlier. Why? Because I should exercise before breakfast, which I should eat, but usually don’t. I should eat breakfast because it’s the cornerstone of a healthy diet. I should eat a helahty diet because I should lose 15 pounds, maybe 20.
When I do eat breakfast, it’s always something I shouldn’t have. “I shouldn’t be eating this,” I tell myself, tucking into a bagel. I used to spend a lot of mornings telling myself I shouldn’t eat doughnuts, until I realized that not only shouldn’t I eat doughnuts, I shouldn’t even think about the fact I shouldn’t eat doughnuts.
Then I root around in the closet for something to put on. I am one of those people who goes through life always looking as though she’s wearing somebody else’s clothes. ” I should buy something that fits, ” I tell myself. I should have ironed something to wear. I shoudl take all this stuff lying around on the floor to the dry cleaners. I should clean out my closet. I should clean the whole house.
Why haven’t I dont any of these things? I don’t have time. I’ve been too busy thinking about all the other things I should or shouldn’t be doing. driving to work, I think that I should buy a new car. Or maybe I should bicycle to work to get some of that exercise I should have gotten before breakfast but didn’t. At the very least I should take the bus because I should have faith in public transportation.
At work I’m confronted with lots of opportunities to feel guilty. I should answer this mail. I should return these telephone calls. I should read all this stuff that’s been piling up on my desk since the last time I cleaned it. Which reminds me, I should clean off my desk.
I start to work. I tell myself I shouldn’t be writing this. I should be writing something else, something intelligent, something warm and witty and wise and wonderful, something that would be all the things I should be, but am not.
I should be writing something positive and uplifting. I met a woman at a party not long ago who told me, “You should be using your forum for something constructive.” I should have said something to her, but I didn’t. I just stood there with my mouth hanging open thinking, ” I should say something to her.” Later I thought of a lot of things I could have said to her, but probably shouldn’t have.
Lunch. I shouldn’t eat a sandwich, but I do. I should skip lunch. I should go for a long walk. I should get in shape. I should save money. I should learn to speed-read. I should get a dog, learn Italian, write a book, take up quiliting, move to california, have twins, reupholster the sofa, get an MBA. I should stop driving myself crazy thinking about what I should do. I should do something, anything, instead of thinking about what I should be doing instead.
But I can’t seem to. I crawl off to bed each night weighed down by my burden of shoulds and shouldn’ts. I lie there adn try to think objectively about my life. It’s a pretty good life. “I should be really happy.” I say to myself as I turn out the light. “But I’m not. How come?”
The answer, I suppose, should be obvious.
So – here’s the lesson… we all have these shoulds that we carry with us on a daily basis. We all talk to ourselves, luckily most of us don’t do it out loud.
We all have 2 or 3 negative messages that can guide our thoughts, feelings and actions and add to what I call the “pile of should“.
How can we LOSE THE SHOVEL (for the pile of should)??
The key is to Face and Replace:
- Recognize your negative messages that you may have been carrying for a very long time. They will generally be along the lines of:
“It’s selfish to think about yourself”
“You’re not good enough/smart enough/ (blank) enough”
“You should be…more productive, more motivated, more busy”
- Become more aware of the power of language, especially the language you use with yourself. Words like “perfect”, “should” and “selfish” can have an incredible impact on your self-esteem, self-confidence and ultimately, self-identity.
- Don’t judge yourself for having the negative self-talk! This just adds another layer to the pile. Accept it for what it is, face it, so you can move forward.
- Think of your negative self-talk as hurdles. You can’t ignore them, pretend they aren’t there or that they don’t affect you. But once you see them (and usually once you recognize them, you get better and better at the situations and people that can trigger the negative messages), you can prepare for them and you can jump over!
- Replace the message. Yes, you can call them “affirmations” if you want. Or if you’re business-inclined, you can call them your mission statement, if you’re spiritual, call it your mantra. I just call it “what I need to remind myself”…
Some ideas for new messages:
“It’s okay to take care of myself”
“I am good enough/smart enough/(blank) enough and here’s why…”
“I am productive and motivated AND I can give myself permission to have a break”
- If you are struggling with coming up with a replacement message, think of the messages you would like your children (or children that you care about if you don’t have your own) to grow up with and carry with them. Be a positive parent to yourself.
- You can actually write down your replacement messages and use them as a visual reminder (on your fridge, on your bathroom mirror, on your car visor). Start the sentences with…
“I have a right to….”
“I would like to….”
“I am okay with…”
Those who attended the seminar probably already know one of my favorite quotes:
“What you are is good enough. If you could only be it openly” (Carl Jung).
I wish you Awareness, Acceptance and permission to feel and be who you need to be, no shoulds attached.
For information about our June 21 seminar, click here