The problem with ‘should’.

We’re off out on our summer adventure with Cherry. Back down to Devon – but this year we have had sunshine all week, a lot nicer than our experience last year, with torrential rain and losing our son on the beach.

The issue this year is just me. I’m getting in the way of myself relaxing and having fun. There’s part of me that says ‘should’ – all the time.

The children should be enjoying time on the beach – even though we find beach and sand irritating.

We should be exploring the caves and towns around us – although the kids would prefer to just be jumping in and out of the pool on the site.

We should be up and about early, filling our days with activities and excitement – except getting Mr G to move beyond the speed of a sloth, well, it’s causing me anxiety.

I should be filled with inspiration to write, updating my blogs, re-designing my website – all the things I want to do, but cannot find the enthusiasm.


The problem with ‘should’ is that it’s a feeling of obligation. No one wants to feel obligated on holiday. I don’t want to, but I worry so much about making it perfect, I forget to relax and just enjoy my time.

I’ve been ‘out of sorts’ for a while now. ‘Out of sorts’ – what a silly phrase. I’ve been generally hacked off with everything and everyone around me. A little isolated and abandoned, and let down. It’s been a really tough year so far, and it’s not over. And I’m wading through it all alone.

Of course – the more pissy and irritable I get, the more bloody horrible I can be, so who wants to be around anyway.

Perhaps because, like my holiday, I have a ‘should’ for the people around me. We should be able to rely on each other. We should understand – or try to understand – each other. We should support friends and family. We should jump in when asked – and sometimes when not asked.

In reality nobody likes feeling obligated to do anything. Just because I have a ‘should’, doesn’t mean everyone around me ‘should’ be the same.

The only person you can depend on is yourself – right?

You teach others how to treat you by what you allow, what you stop and what you reinforce

So this isn’t actually a pity fest post, or a moan, or anything else. Actually, today I’m feeling kind of positive.

It’s a realisation. Time to stop expecting others to meet my ‘should’ and being irritated or disappointed when they don’t. And it works both ways, of course. Time to spend less of my own energy on those around me who don’t have the same ‘should’.

It’s taken 7 days, but I’ve finally relaxed. The sun is shining – it has been all week. The beagles are lying out by the tent, snoozing and not, as feared, howling at every other dog or person on the site.

I’ve got a coffee besides me, laptop in front, and I can hear Mr G and the kids ambling about doing what they want to do. I’m leaving them to it.

And finally, I feel like writing.

And ... relax.

And … relax.



About Piper George

Wife, mother, puppy chaser extraordinaire. Freelance copy-writer and blogger! Life is full of opportunities - it's having the time to grab them that's hard.

Connect with me!


The problem with ‘should’. — 1 Comment

  1. “Should” is a total bully word and one of the few I really dislike. I also really dislike when I feel let down by others, and even more by the disappointment that it’s my own expectations of them not being met, which is causing the let-down.

    Life is easier when you don’t expect anything from others, because then they can’t let you down. People say that like it’s a good thing but I still feel a bit abyssal about it.

Speak up and tell me what you think!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge