How To Stop Saying Should've Been

Updated: Jan 9

Should is a nasty word. It makes us feel shame, guilt, and all those treacherous emotions that don’t help keep the hope alive. Being in a mental clinic has made me feel every emotion possible and buried me in the worst-case scenarios of “should’ve been” — especially on my birthday, Christmas, new years spent here. Here’s how to stop saying should’ve been and feeling bad, because you deserve to delight in everything that will be.

Become aware of your narrative.

First things first, we all have that voice (or two) in our heads. You can either befriend it, or it may become your worst enemy as it did for me at one point. But when in a mental clinic, I realised I am in control. No matter how much shit your mind chats (and it’s a lot!), I can become aware of what should’ve been but not let it make me feel small or inadequate. Either way should’ve come from comparing yourself too.

Here’s how to stop comparing yourself to others. I can look instead to what could be and not be torn down by what should’ve been because it didn’t happen for a reason plus the continuous drone of should’ve been would be the end of me. I’ve now noticed I don't want to go, so you shouldn’t because you matter.

Change your thought process.

When acknowledging your narrative, you now have a choice to change it. “Time and mind are inseparable,” says the good old Eckhart Tolle. When we decide what we want to think, we become aware, alive. When I was in the clinic, I realised the past didn’t matter anymore (I’m not one for living in the past but oh man, did the clinic make me live in it just for some sense of reality and escapism), what could be and what is matter the most. The dreaded should’ve been will disappear when you become aware of it and then…

Live in the present moment.

“…but don’t forget: the only thing that’s ultimately real about your journey is the step you are taking at this moment. That’s all there is.” — Eckhart Tolle

As the meister of presence puts it, we must not forget that all we have is now. Cheesy I know, but very true. At times when fear fuels my decisions in a state of fury, I must take a step back into reality and realise now is where I am, and that’s all that matters. This frame of mind will release all of those should’ve been floating around trying to bring you down.

Become excited by the unknown

Fear of the unknown is real (tell me about it!). It can be exhausting, even crippling. There was a time when I was so scared of the future that being in bed seemed like the only option — of which it isn’t, I promise you! You can, and you WILL get through this. Instead, I like to now imagine or envision my future in happy new places. It’s said that the more you envision your future with clarity like you’re already there, the easier it is for it to unfold, become real.

Don’t laugh, but it’s like this with my book — because I believe it will be best-selling, the more open I am to marketing it and putting my all into it imagining it on shelves in book shops. No wonder mood boards are such a thing- that reminds me I need to do one. Do you need help with doing one? Then feel free to book a free 1:1 discovery call with me where we go through your goals and get what’s best for you going!

So how to stop hiding behind what should’ve been and make room for what could include becoming aware of your narrative, then changing it, living in the present moment, and becoming excited about what's to come!

Share below your favourite way and feel OK!

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