Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I Don't "have to"

Posted by Tracy Wainwright at 9:46 PM
Now that we’ve added a word to our vocabulary, it’s time to take a phrase out. I am just as guilty as anyone else about using this phrase, but I am working diligently to stop using it except when it is truly appropriate. I once had a teacher who said, “There are only two things in life that you have to do: pay taxes and die.” Well, there have been plenty of people who have proven that you don’t have to pay taxes. You still have the option, just most people don’t want to pay the consequences. So, really, the only thing we have to do is die. We don’t have a choice in that one.
If you listen to many of us talk, however, you would think that the world could come to an end at any moment. I’m not even sure how often I say “have to,” but I know it’s too much. I have to cook dinner. I have to go to the grocery store. I have to go to work. I have to clean. I have to… It never seems to end. But we really don’t have to do all of these things. There are plenty of people who chose not to do many of these things. Their lives may not be what we would want, but they’re still around.
The phrase “have to” brings with it a sense of burden. If I have to do something it’s an obligation. If you’re anything like me, you kind of trudge through obligations like walking through knee deep mud. The same task can be skipped through light-heartedly with the simple exlusion of the phrase “have to.” I’m going to cook dinner because I’m hungry and want us to be healthy. I’m going to the grocery store because we’re getting low on some food items that we like. I’m going to go to work so that we can continue to have the things we have. I’m going to clean the house so that it looks nice and is a healthy place for us to live. Just as we talked about changing perspectives earlier, changing how we say things can also change our experiences. Saying “I’m going to….because” it give me this good benefit improves my mood, motivation, and attitude about what there is to be done.

0 comments on "I Don't "have to""

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I Don't "have to"

Now that we’ve added a word to our vocabulary, it’s time to take a phrase out. I am just as guilty as anyone else about using this phrase, but I am working diligently to stop using it except when it is truly appropriate. I once had a teacher who said, “There are only two things in life that you have to do: pay taxes and die.” Well, there have been plenty of people who have proven that you don’t have to pay taxes. You still have the option, just most people don’t want to pay the consequences. So, really, the only thing we have to do is die. We don’t have a choice in that one.
If you listen to many of us talk, however, you would think that the world could come to an end at any moment. I’m not even sure how often I say “have to,” but I know it’s too much. I have to cook dinner. I have to go to the grocery store. I have to go to work. I have to clean. I have to… It never seems to end. But we really don’t have to do all of these things. There are plenty of people who chose not to do many of these things. Their lives may not be what we would want, but they’re still around.
The phrase “have to” brings with it a sense of burden. If I have to do something it’s an obligation. If you’re anything like me, you kind of trudge through obligations like walking through knee deep mud. The same task can be skipped through light-heartedly with the simple exlusion of the phrase “have to.” I’m going to cook dinner because I’m hungry and want us to be healthy. I’m going to the grocery store because we’re getting low on some food items that we like. I’m going to go to work so that we can continue to have the things we have. I’m going to clean the house so that it looks nice and is a healthy place for us to live. Just as we talked about changing perspectives earlier, changing how we say things can also change our experiences. Saying “I’m going to….because” it give me this good benefit improves my mood, motivation, and attitude about what there is to be done.

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