The beginning of my investigation into the ‘Are vs. Should Problem’, or the struggle many of us experience between the person we ARE and the person we feel like we SHOULD BE.
Have you ever experienced this? Most people I ask say, ‘doesn’t everyone?’. But I really don’t know. All I can say is that I, personally, often feel like I have a natural reaction to a given situation or decision that is intimately coupled with one or more alternative decisions. Usually that first inclination comes from what I feel is ‘me’, while the alternatives come from . . . somewhere else.
I believe we get ‘shoulded’ by our families, our churches, our schools, our jobs, our neighborhoods, our cultures, and other ‘outside’ sources.
And by ‘shoulded’, I mean that we are taught norms and rules that we are supposed to obey, whether they make sense to us or not. And the struggle, or the dissonance, occurs when our ‘feelings’ differ from what we are taught.
The example I always use, and what started it for me, is about work. Most of us are taught that we have to work at least 40 hours a week at some kind of 9-5 job in order to live our lives. Personally, I have always rejected this notion and am convinced there is another way. I don’t understand why so many institutions impose this sort of norm. My ‘are’ says I can justify my existence, make a contribution to society, and earn money to support myself by working 20-30 hours a week on my own schedule as long as i get my work done. And usually this is MORE than most people would do in their 40 hour 9-5. But, the ‘should’ of the career world just doesn’t support this notion and I have a conflict. And a struggle.
Maybe that’s a bad example, but I go into much more depth in this episode and the following 18, so far, where I get into the details.
Original post here: https://chrisburcher.com/2021/06/18/kew-episode-50-are-vs-should/
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