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  • Amy Shore, LPC

SHOULD is a Big Blob of Guilt!

"Should I....?"

It doesn't matter what comes after those two words, because the damage is already done. Should is a word that I think needs to be banished from our vocabulary.

Why? Let me explain... Scenario:

It's Friday night, and you are invited to a party at your coworker's house after work. You're tired, it's been a long week, and you need to get up early the next morning. You don't want to go... However, you utter the words, "Should I go to the party?" Maybe you say it to yourself or you say it to another coworker working your shift. The party starts in 3 hours. Here comes the therapy (cue the therapist voice in your head): What do you WANT to do?

Do you WANT to go to the party?

Do you WANT to go home and relax in front of the TV?

Do you WANT to not go because you don't particularly like this coworker and just feel obligated to go?

Or do you feel peer pressure to join in and be at the party even though you really, truly don't WANT to attend, because not going will hurt your reputation? That word 'should' merely attaches a great big blob of GUILT to your sentence! I SHOULD go because I was invited, my coworkers will all be there and talk about why I'm not there if I don't go, and even if I'm tired and need to go to work early the next morning, I SHOULD go because I feel obligated to go. See how 'should' complicates things? I give you permission to banish the word 'should' -- forever -- from your sentences forevermore! Do what you WANT to do, not what you think you SHOULD do. We all have the power to make decisions for ourselves, and we are not obligated to explain why. This is your one life, so do not let guilt seep into your decision making. Adios, 'should.' You have no place in a mentally healthy brain. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 'To thine own self be true.' -- William Shakespeare About Amy:

Amy Shore is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a National Certified Counselor in Sugar Land, TX who provides counseling to adults, teens, and tweens. She specializes in adoption related concerns (birth parents, adoptive parents, foster parents, children in foster care, adoptees), anxiety, depression, identity issues (adoption, gender, sexuality), family/school conflicts, and life transitions. You can learn more about her and her therapy/consulting services at

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