The One Word for Less Stress

The One Word for Less Stress

It happened to me on Monday...again. And I bet it happens to you too.

This is the part where you understand why these posts are called “unfiltered.” The part where I tell you some personal things that aren’t publicly acceptable, and are publicly embarrassing. The part where I’m, well...honest.

On Monday morning I heard my inner voice say “I should drink less.”

We had arrived home the night before after a few days renting a beach house. The kind of trip where you eat charcuterie lunch on the balcony, squinting into the afternoon sun and drinking white wine while the kids nap.  

Where the lunch wine is preceded by Irish coffee upon waking and a mimosa with breakfast. And followed by hard ciders on the beach, a cocktail before dinner, and red wine after the kids go to bed.

All of which leads to glossy eyes fixed on the sluggishly rising tide in the glass coffee carafe early Monday morning while you should all over yourself right there in the kitchen.

Wait! You need to take that should seriously. Every time you should yourself, stop and reflect. Ask yourself—”is this something that causes me to should often?”

Maybe you don’t drink alcohol, enjoy beach houses, or eat stinky cheeses and spiced meats from gluten free crackers while bathing in the warm sun while your kids nap.

For you it might be different. It’s the morning after you put down a whole pint of Ben & Jerry’s...again. It’s the weight of stress pushing you down the entire drive to work because you’re going to be late...again. It’s opening another package from amazon with an impulse gadget that you’ll never use...again.

Pay attention to your internal voice when it says should.

The word—should—is your flag notifying you of an internal conflict that is causing you trouble. The gap between what you are doing and what you know you should be doing is breeding stress and tension.

If you notice the same should keeps coming up, you need to make a change. And it’s actually simple! Change one word.

Change your should to must.

You must stop eating an entire pint of Ben & Jerry’s “Tonight Dough” three times a week. You must stop hiding your amazon purchases from your spouse. I must drink fewer days of the week to get better sleep and be more productive.

We can do it! And it all starts with noticing when we should all over ourselves.

Your homework this week: Next time you hear your inner voice say should, make a note in your phone. Keep track of when you should yourself and look for patterns. Say the sentence again and replace should with must.

If you need extra motivation, click here to check out Mike Posner’s new catchy song and sing along to the chorus with “Take care of your should.”

Be great,