Friday, October 16, 2020

Are you a “should and must” thinker?


One of the strategies in counseling and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), is to help and switch the “should and must” thinker into the “it would be nice” thinker, and back again depending on context. Of course, “should and must thinking” is great for giving us the focus and motivation to act, and at the same time, can be a great source of pain and suffering if we don’t ever succeed, due to our unrealistic expectations.

Examples are:

  • Life should be fair versus it would be nice if life is fair.
  • People should always be nice versus it would be nice if people are nice.
  • People should have common sense versus it would be nice if people have common sense.
  • People should always do the right thing versus it would be nice if people do the right thing. 
“It would be nice” helps us to accept what is IS, but still thrive for it.  We understand that like is not fair, but we can still try and thrive for it. 

Doesn’t work all the time, but it would be nice if we can give it a try.


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