The tentative title of this article was “Women Should Just Stop Using These Words Unless They Need To”. Then, I was going to write “The End”.
See how punny that was?
Seriously women, we need to talk.
What is it with asking for permission and justifying who you are and what you are doing through words?
I’m going to get right to it.
Words have power, but we use them to disempower ourselves.
These are words that need to be stricken from your vocabulary forever and ever.
1. Should – I should do the laundry now. I should write a blog post. I should cook dinner.
No. There are no shoulds. There are only things you do and things you aren’t doing at this moment. Should-ing yourself to death is telling your inner self that you aren’t enough being and doing what you are doing right this very minute.
Remember: Presence. Right now is what matters.
2. Need to – I need to go to the store. I need to lose weight. I need to speak louder to be heard in meetings. I need to stop using the word should.
No. Again, you are telling your subconscious that it isn’t enough, doing enough, being enough in exactly what is going on right now. Remember: Presence. Right now is what matters.
Remember: Presence. Right now is what matters.
3. Have to – This equals being obliged to do something and is usually attached to a fact (of life). Yes, in life there are a lot of things we have to do. We aren’t talking about those things. We are talking about using those words against ourselves. If you are saying this in your mind, the very next thing you should be asking yourself in your mind is “or what?”. What will happen if you don’t do the thing you have to do?
Use this to frame your reference on what you truly have to do in your life and what you are talking yourself into thinking you have to do. Do your really have to make dinner or could it be a breakfast-for-dinner night? In our house, we also have free-for-all nights and I am not in charge.
4. I’ll do it – This one stung me for a long time. There are so many reasons why I would say I’ll do it. Most girls are raised to be of service or to help out. This translates to many of them as being of service equals being loved, or that they need to help to get the attention they crave. This happens everywhere, at home, in church, and especially in schools.
I realized that the tight grip of the words I’ll do it were actually strangling not just me but everyone in my family.
I let go. I don’t have to have things done my way or in my time. Really does the kitchen sink have to be scrubbed down every night? Do I really need to go to the market twice a week? Or do the clothes have to be folded before bed? Note here: laundry isn’t my chore, I’m using this as an example.
5. Just – Just equals Justification. It is a qualifier. There is zero reason to justify anything you say or do. You don’t need disclaimers to speak and be heard. You are meant to be heard and valued for the things you say without the word just. Seriously, I kid you not, in the last paragraph I typed the word just then deleted it. That word is so ingrained in every single woman. I know a lot of it is just the way we speak but that word needs to go. We do not have to qualify ourselves. We qualify simply by being the Beings we are in living, breathing, human bodies.
6. Can’t – No really you can. When we tell ourselves that we can’t, we are confining ourselves into a big imaginary box meticulously crafted by society to keep you in line.
The box is your unwritten rules that you live by. These aren’t rules like don’t kill your neighbor but more like rules where you don’t tell your neighbor that their kid is a bully.
These are the sucking-it-up rules. The stifling your voice rules that are not keeping the peace but actually harming you. It isn’t a coincidence that there is an epidemic of thyroid diseases amongst women; we keep sucking it up and stifling ourselves, creating disease in our bodies.
We are energetically causing our own diseases.
7. I’m FINE – False. Evidence. Appearing. Real. or Forget. Everything. And. Run. or Face. Everything. And. Relax.
No matter how you are using the I’m FINE statement, it is probably a lie, unless of course you fell down and you are actually fine, then it may be real.
You are allowed to not be fine. I’ve grown to learn that at least 20% of the time I’m not fine. I gave up pretending. This is why there are many mothers that are closet alcoholics or have autoimmune diseases. I’ve teetered there on the brink because we are conditioned to believe that everyone else is fine, not just fine but awesome. That is a complete lie.
I gave up pretending.
Over the years I have realized that I’m sort of a human barometer. I can tell what is going on with many women because if I feel it there are zillions of others that do. So, when I know I’m not fine about something, I know that many others aren’t as well.
8. Give me… (a few minutes)…
No. No one is going to give you anything. Don’t ask. Instead state, “I will be with you in a few minutes”. You aren’t asking for someone’s permission to do something. I know this is counter to how every single one of us was raised, to not be a burden or put others out. We aren’t taking up space just by being. We own the space and deserve the space without making concessions.
9. Think – I think I want to get a pedicure. I think I want to take a day off. I think I want to go out to dinner.
No. When you think about it, you are trying to convince yourself that it is ok to do what you want to do. Please replace this type of statement with I am going to get a pedicure. I am going to take a day off. I am going out to dinner. See how being more decisive in yours thought and speech make you feel.
It is quite empowering.
I’m guilty of quite a few of these over my lifetime, especially when I was in my self-deprecating phase. I’m not telling you to not be light-hearted but for God sake, please please please stop making excuses for your existence when speaking. And I mean when speaking to anyone, including your partner, your employer, your employees, your family members and your co-workers, your children.
I want to impart to you that you don’t just need to do one-damn-thing and you don’t need anyone’s permission nor approval no matter if you want to sit on the sofa all day and veg-out, or if you don’t want to bathe your kid today. Trust me, one stinky day won’t make a difference.
This applies to everything.
The house can be dirty for a few days or weeks. If you don’t want to do it, outsource it. If you can’t afford to outsource and you live with other people including anyone over the age of 3, put them to work.
Honestly, I would love to have a housekeeper, but what stops me every single time is that I want my kids, while living under my roof, to understand that it is their responsibility to clean the bathroom, do kitchen chores, and wash their sheets and clothes. It makes absolutely no difference to me if they sleep in stinky sheets or wear the same clothes for a week. I don’t care until I smell them.
We even got a shirt for my son that said “Same shirt, different day”, because we could hardly get him to shower or wear anything but lounge clothes. It made this situation so much more fun.
Now, this isn’t an excuse to skip common pleasantries like thank you and please, I want to hit home that we DO NOT NEED to use qualifiers in our speech or have to explain or justify ourselves on any level.
I’m sure you understand that all of these words have a place in our language, what needs to change is how we use them. I know this is going to be like relearning the English language.