We are so attached to the concept of being happy in this culture that we beat ourselves up whenever life appears other than aligned with this lofty—and quite often unattainable—goal. In the sentence above, “should” is a euphemism, a stand-in, for “something is wrong with my life.” I don’t accept life as it is. Either IT (life) or I need to change.
What is the antidote to the debacle of “should”? In its many internal and external guises, “should” is often a sign of resistance to what is, and resistance, at its core, is almost always fear. Take a moment and think about what the deeper voice—the one bubbling up from the heart—might be saying (when in the throes of “should”): “I am afraid to let go of my partner. I am afraid to change. I am afraid that he doesn’t love me. I am afraid that my life will be a failure.” YIKES! Do you see how the monster of fear lies in wait under the surface mantra of “life should be different”?
Happiness, in the context of “should” is a paradox, because only by letting go of the “should” component—which is based on fear and our need to control—can true happiness ultimately emerge in our lives. I believe we could be happy, but only if we learn to stop resisting life, embrace change, and resonate, relish, and revel, deep down, head to toe, in the mud of what is, which is what becoming a “life-shifter” is ultimately about.