• Lisa Paul IBCLC

From Should to Want-to

This week I listened to a podcast from the Women’s Prosperity Network. I was in the car or exercising so I didn’t take notes or remember the title of the talk, but one idea stuck with me. Shifting from doing things we should/have to/need to do, to doing what we want to do. What if you could make choices during your day that spoke to your desires, not in a hedonistic selfish way, but one that gives rise to a version of your life that is purposeful and driven?

One area of my life that I “should” on myself a lot is exercise and body image. I should go to the gym, I should sweat when I exercise, I should lose weight, I need to make time to exercise, etc. When I change my languaging to “I want to” the conversation with myself improves and gets way more fun! I say things like “I want to take belly dancing lessons.” “I want to drink fresh juice concoctions full of veggies in the morning.” “I want to listen to a podcast while jumping on my mini-trampoline.” “I want to take a bike tour of a foreign country.” “I want to eat carrots and hummus for lunch.”

As I walk down this “want to” road, I am starting to notice those inner voices telling me what I should be doing. I test those by substituting “I want to…” instead. Do I need to bake a cake for my son’s birthday party today? Do I want to? For today, the answer was no, I don’t want the stress of baking a cake. I will let Publix do that for me. If my daughter was home today and we baked it together I would have wanted to spend that time with her. When she asked last night and we were both tired, we mutually decided that baking a cake at 9pm was not on our want list!

As moms, I think we too often let “should” rule our lives. Especially the new mamas, they give themselves lots of rules about what motherhood should look like. Mamas think we have to do it all, and when we don't, we aren't the amazing mothers that we already are and continue to be. Let’s shift our thinking together! Let's start changing the way we talk to ourselves. "I want to change this poopy diaper so my baby is more comfortable." "I want to clean the house so I can invite over my friends tomorrow." "I want to go to Zumba class tomorrow because I like the music." What is something that you want to do?

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