You Should Never Say Should | Observations of Parenthood

should

(v.)

used to indicate obligation, duty, or correctness, typically when criticizing someone's actions

The world is tough! Being a mom is grueling some days. Being a wife, entrepreneur, heck, just being human. It is all a challenge, it takes a lot of grace and lets face it several to-do lists. With that said, this word "should" is kind of awful. How often do you say you should do something? Have you ever really thought what you are doing to yourself?

The should is a self shaming trend that needs to stop. We are all awesome, we are all trying and working toward our best. Therefore, there is no should. There is however "I want, I will, and I won't." (period) While I realize we live in this hyper world, this just adds to it, we can , in general, be slow down and be more graceful. As a person, woman, daughter, sister, wife, mom, and business owner I am constantly battling myself over the "should."

I should clean the house.

I should plan a party for Nora.

I should get in front of my clients more.

I should post more pictures.

It goes on and on, in all areas of life.

It's time to STOP!!

Seriously. If you are struggling with anything: life balance, motherhood, a relationship, chores, money, you name it, just stop. Stop yourself, lend some grace to your heart and break down your task, budget, travel plans, everything, into what you WANT to do, what you are WILLING to do if time or energy permits (read money as well), then what in reality, you WON'T do. Stop fighting yourself!

I like to use WANT, WILL, WON'T lists for just about everything. Gone is the Pro/Con list making, which really didn't help me decide on anything. We CAN do a lot of things, sometimes we follow our heart, other times it is our head or wallet. Breaking life down into these categories provide a lot of clarity!

No need to print/buy anything, just write it on a spare piece of paper (back of a receipt, on a credit card offer envelope, we all have them, or your fancy stationary). Keep it simple and put a date on it (for reference), because our lives and preferences change! Be honest with yourself! Write it out if you have to, to create the habit. I still do this!!

Some decisions require input or the wishes of others. Say traveling or house buying. Each person involved can write their separate lists and then come together and narrow down the list to fit the family or business partnership. Talk about each item, throw out the WON'T list from each party, and move forward with your WANTS and conditional WILL list. Effectively creating a map to moving forward. This helps everyone be heard and be productive.

This idea came while observing my daughter this weekend. She is two this week. INSANE! Everyone talks about the terrible twos, "Just you wait!" dunn dunn duuuunnn. So far we have gone with the flow and respected Little Bits decisions and space. However, we are now getting into the age of autonomy. Her ability to flat out say "No," and our protective and guiding roles need to tell her "No" as well. Rather than relying solely on redirection, we are starting to give her words to help, it is a long process, but as a parent I truly believe in fostering independence and being an active participant in life. While her life is fairly black and white in regards to her choices, we have to cultivate the grey area. The WANT, WILL, WON'T lists are helping us be better parents and more understanding of her needs as we grow and strengthen our family communication.

Life was much more simple when we were kids right? You want to swing, you swing. You don't want to swing; so you don't swing. In all seriousness, we should all swing every once in a while ;P

Parenthood is grit and grace!

Nicole