On the 17th, I turned 33. My Jesus Year.
Whew. I can finally say that without thinking and feeling impending gloom (shout out to therapy).
In the last year I have seen various conversations online about how incredible it is once you get to your 30’s and the leaps and bounds you make. I don’t disagree that it can be all those things, however a lot of people do not share those sentiments, and I want to say that it’s perfectly okay not to.
For years (and I’m still unlearning), there has been an unhealthy attachment with age and accomplishment. We have my beautiful, problematic and rich culture to thank for that.
As a result of such indoctrination, I have walked around with an internal metric system, tallying up where I should be, at this each (st)age. Things like how I should look, what job I should have, how much money I should make, the type of person I should date, that I should have children by now, own homes, and all the other ‘shoulds’ you can think of!
What should actually does is establishes that there’s a lack, and too often an insurmountable pressure, leading to unmet expectations. You automatically ignore the present. I call it destination obsession.
‘Should’ had become a heavy part of my everyday language until recently.
I came to this awareness through the work I do in therapy, and that opportunity allowed me to examine the expectations that I had.
I have eliminated it from my vocabulary, and I am utilising other words that are gentle and kind to myself, and I have to say, I love it here!
The next time you use that word, I encourage you to pause and then examine your life with kind curiosity as my therapist says, meaning without judgement. You might discover that you love your life exactly the way it is and that you are where you’re meant to be.