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As a coach, I have very few “rules” for my clients but when it comes to “s” word, it is a no-no.  Yes…”should” is off limits.  There is nothing inspiring when we generate an action out of feeling obligated.  Guilt as a motivator isn’t energizing.

When you catch yourself saying you “should” do something, it is an opportunity to stop and reassess.  Sometimes what feels like a more mundane action step is actually part of a vision or goal you are highly motivated to attain.

Invoicing, for example, is something you can look at as “should” or “have to” do paperwork.  It may not be the most creative aspect of your business or job, but when we re-frame it to see how invoices generate income, a measure of success and a resource we need to grow it.  Invoicing is a sign that people are valuing our service.

Some quick tips to eliminate the “shoulds”:

  • is the action or choice actually supporting a larger plan that IS inspiring?  If so, align the task or choice with that bigger vision.
  • is the action or choice something you are doing because you feel obligated to someone else?  If so, do you need to make a different choice or is there a core value that is important to you being served by taking this action?
  • is the “should” worth the energy it will cost you when you act out of obligation?

The next time you catch yourself about to take an action or make a choice that isn’t inspiring or in alignment with your greater vision, remember the guideline I suggest to my clients…don’t “should” on yourself.

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