Don’t Should on Yourself

How did your New Year’s resolutions go over the weekend? If you made such resolutions, there is a good chance they did not go so well. Very few people follow through on their New Year’s resolutions. We are only 5 days into the New Year, but for many the newness and the freshness of the new year has already worn off.

The reason so many resolutions fail is because they are motivated by guilt. We are good at piling guilt upon ourselves. Think of all the “shoulds” you have in your life. For example you might say to yourself:

  • I should eat better
  • I should exercise more
  • I should go to church more
  • I should go to bed earlier
  • I should read my Bible more
  • I should watch TV less
  • I should work harder

Should, should, and more should! There are a lot of shoulds. After I shared this in my sermon yesterday, one of our church members came up to me and said to never should on yourself.

Maybe one new years resolution to make is to take should out of your vocabulary. Anything that is motivated by should will never work. Motivation by guilt is not really motivation at all. If you are doing something out of guilt it will not fuel you. It will only deplete you.