Albert Ellis, a famous psychologist was fond of telling his clients, “You’re ‘shoulding’ all over yourself.” What does this mean, and are you shoulding all over yourself?
Many people express real distress over not being where they are “supposed to be” at a certain age: “I should be making more money,” “I should be married by now,” “I should have started a family by now,” “I should own something by now,” “I should have a corner office by now,” “I should be finished with school at this age,” and on and on. At Main St. Psychiatry we want to learn who you are, not who you should be!
Take the time to listen to the words you’re saying out loud, and the thoughts that ramble around in your head. We all have that inner dialog speaking to us, judging us and reminding us of who we should be and what we should have done.
Look for words like should, ought, have to, and must. Dr. Ellis identified three musts that hold us back: I must do well. You must treat me well. And the world must be easy.
If these thoughts are holding you back, we can help. For more information check out: http://albertellis.org/milestone-misery-stop-shoulding/