Changing shoulds to coulds!

Many young people’s thoughts are dominated with a high level of negative mental chatter which research suggests can be as much as 12,0000 words a minute at times of severe distress. This cognitive thought process can also be driven with overtly high expectations of what children and young people think they should which puts an alarming pressure on their day to day life.

This negative should talk feeds into negative comparison to others and setting unrealistic expectations on ones-self. As you can imagine, this is not only exhausting but more so massively damaging to self-esteem. Individuals feel they are never good enough, getting it right enough or feel worthy enough hence lower feelings of self- worth which can activate the internal striving even more.

It is import to help young people understand the damage that should vocabulary does. By working on changing shoulds to coulds this gives the young person a choice. Rather than thinking, “I should be better behaved” which leaves a feeling of inferiority and failure, “I could be better behaved” enables children and young people to see that there are options, and choices that they can try.

Please can you help young people who you feel may present with similar issues, to consolidate this valuable process in aiding their emotional and psychological well-being.