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Should You?

One thing I’ve learned from coaching for the last 12 years is that themes show up. They show up in sessions with clients, in conversations with friends, and in my personal life.

Guess what I’ve been hearing a ton of lately?

Yep, should. It’s not even New Year's Resolution time and we’re 'should-ing' all over the place!

I should be a nicer person, I should know what I want and how to articulate it beautifully, I should have a job by now, I should be better at this, they say this is the best way to___ so I should do it, I should, I should, I should… I had a should of my own and it was about writing, of all things, this newsletter!

You may not realize the effect 'should-ing' has on your life.

  • The pressure to conform to societal shoulds can be overwhelming and lead to increased stress and anxiety.

  • The weight of shoulds can be burdensome, constantly dictating our choices and preventing us from living authentically.

  • Following shoulds blindly can lead to a sense of emptiness and dissatisfaction, as they may not align with our true desires and aspirations.

  • Shoulds create boundaries and restrict our exploration of alternative paths and possibilities, stifling creativity and individuality.

  • Relying solely on external shoulds can strip away our sense of agency and autonomy, making us feel powerless in shaping our own lives. Internal shoulds can be just as disempowering if the voice is not authentically your own.

Karen Horney, psychologist, calls this the "Tyranny of Shoulds."

What are the shoulds in your life right now?

Are they quiet, unspoken, or loud?

What could happen if you took a look at your shoulds and transformed them?

Judy Garfinkel helps you clarify "what's next." Her expertise in building confidence and resilience supports personal development and the ability to navigate career and work transitions – especially now! She also crafts bespoke resumes, cover letters, LinkedIn profiles, and bios that open doors for her clients and land jobs. Judy is a Past President of the International Coaching Federation - Connecticut Chapter, where she led 250+ member coaches. You can reach her at

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