One Word Changes Everything


Man? At Home? Please? Interest? I? Believe? Or Pizza? Which word changes everything? Just think.

‘Do you love me or should I commit suicide?’

If she doesn’t love him and doesn’t want him killed?

Will a ‘No’ will change everything? A ‘No’ can save one’s life? Leave it. That’s not our context.

What is the difference between asking, “What would you do?” and “What should you do?” Maybe this is a very intriguing, yet simple discussion on ethics and morality.

The first part of the question, “What would you do?” is a psychological question. Psychology explains why we do what we do. The second part of the question, “What should you do?” is an ethical question. Ethics help us to understand whether we have made the right decision. “If you are a mother, ask your child what he or she would do if they saw someone stealing mangoes from a neighbor’s tree. If they’re like most children, they will say – I would keep it to myself.”

He then proposes a simple switch in the way you word the question. He advises that we should ask, “What should you do?” By doing this, he says that you will probably receive a different response from your child, such as – I should talk to the person and probably even tell the neighbor Uncle or Aunt. A completely different response by changing one simple word (would to should).

How many times a day do you use the word “should” in reference to yourself or other people? When we use the word “should,” we’re not accepting reality. We’re talking about things that we wish were so, but aren’t (or vice versa). Whenever I used the word “should” when talking to myself, it was motivated by a lack of self-acceptance rather than encouragement. If we say to ourselves “I should really meditate more often,” the unspoken follow-up to that sentence is “… but I don’t. Removing the word “should” from your vocabulary will take time, patience, and practice. But it is possible, and it comes with great rewards. Now take each I SHOULD  from your list , read it out loud and then ask yourself , WHY SHOULD I? Rewrite your list, replacing SHOULD with COULD, and start each statement with IF I REALLY WANTED TO.

Essentially, the question, “What would you do?” is an appeal to psychology; whereas, “What should you do?” is an appeal to ethics. Simple questions, yet both possess a profound impact.

That’s all about the topic.  Dr. Jamie Schwandt wrote an article about SHOULD vs WOULD written by  Bruce Weinstein. He left a quote in the end, “We ask a simple question And that is all we wish: Are fishermen all liars? Or do only liars fish?” – William Sherwood Fox

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