The Results Of My Shoulding Experiment

So, a while ago I was in a coffee shop and three women were sitting beside me talking rather loud.

They were badmouthing their partners and “shoulding” all over their friends, really going for it too.

Mary shouldn’t behave like this, and Jacinta should do more of that… you get my drift.

I thought “really..?! Surely we can do better than that”

I wondered what would happen if we stopped “shoulding” all over people, if we stopped gossiping, criticizing, passing comment, and judging others altogether.

So, whilst many people were fighting their chocolate, alcohol or fast food lent urges…

I went cold turkey on “shoulding”.

I gave up looking at, reading, listening to and talking about other people, both celebs and ordinary folk.

Not that I’m big on it to start with, but I made a very conscious decision to not gossip, criticize, or bad mouth in any way shape or form. No giving my opinion on other people’s stuff, no commenting on other people’s stuff… nada.

And it’s been interesting to say the least.

For starters, I’ve never spoken so little since I stopped talking to my parents for a month aged 16, for grounding me for breaking the “home by midnight” rule by 10 hours…

At the same time it’s been an incredible experience to notice just how much people around me gossip, criticize, comment and give their opinion on other people’s lives.

It’s rather astounding.

At the coffee shop, at the bus stop, whilst queuing at the shop, in work, with family and friends…

It’s amazing how much we talk about other people! In fact, it’s even more amazing how much we think we know about how other people should behave or run their lives.

The point of this experiment?

No point really, purely exploratory. I’m a Mind Coach after all… But I do wonder what would happen if we spent all that mental, verbal and emotional energy focusing on improving ourselves and our lives instead.

I also wonder how many relationships would be radically transformed (for better or worse) if we stopped “shoulding” all over them…

Just a thought. Feeling philosophical lately. Must be spring 😉

 
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