The Obligation of Shoulds – What is it Costing you?

July 12, 2021

Last week I was sitting on the couch with my husband. We were having quiet time after his workday. He started talking about his day and I found my mind wandering.

“I should be working on my website.”

“I didn’t comment on a Facebook post. I should do that before I forget.”

My hand reflexively starts to reach out to my phone beside me. I notice my husband’s questioning look which lead me to pause my internal thoughts.

“Why should I be working on my website or commenting on a Facebook post right now? This is quality time we set aside for us. How do I want to choose to spend the time?”

The obligation of shoulds can rob us of the experience we are having in the moment. When you are thinking “I should be doing…”, more often than not, there is a negative emotion associated with it. It takes away from relationships with ourselves and others. There is a sense of obligation and duty for a task where the last thing in the world you want to be doing is what you “should” be doing.

I know what you are feeling; I have been there my friends.

By taking a moment to really question the thought, you can change the way you respond to how you are thinking in the moment. By being curious and simply asking “Is this really true?” you can change the outcome of your actions.

Try it out and see what happens!

Until next time.

You are loved and enough!


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Meet Celia!

Hi, I am Celia Varghese, psychiatrist and career clarity coach. It is my mission to help women physicians build a career they love and enjoy, whether that’s inside or outside of medicine.

Combining my skills as a psychiatrist and career coach, I help women physicians discover the things that are stopping them from creating the careers and lives that they want and to take action today so they can live the life they want tomorrow.

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