There are some people that are very vocal about what they think you should do. These people freely give you their opinion even when you don't ask for it. They speak their mind and tell you what is and what's not and how you are missing "the mark" (aka you're not living up to their expectations for you). Do you know anyone like this? I sure do.
These people sort of bog me down. They get on my nerves and make me feel lousy. It's hard to hear what they have to say without feeling like a failure and burdened with all the "shoulds" -- all the things they say you "should have" done.
Oh you're 27 and still single. Well you should….
Oh you're only earning that much. Well you know, you should….
Oh you should do this to fix that.
Well you should've done that differently….on and on it goes.
People are not projects with a 1-2-3 list of do's and don'ts. Life is not a list of "shoulds" and "should nots." Life is not black and white as some people think it is. Life is full of color and vibrance. Life is full of mystery. Life is not a destination, but a JOURNEY.
As much as type-A personalities (me!!!!) like to color in the lines, we need to let go a little bit. We need to learn to color outside the lines a bit. Life is bigger than we think it is. We need to stop projecting "shoulds" and "should nots" on others. Whether you say it aloud or just think it (that person should really do this….), STOP. Force yourself to stop "should-ing" on others.
A common adage in Alcoholics Anonymous is: Live and let live. You live your life to the best of your ability and let others live theirs. It's not your job to tell others what they should and should not do. You be a beacon of light through your actions. Others will see that and be inspired. Don't take on the responsibility of policing others.
Stop "should-ing" on others.
Be the change you wish to see in the world.