There’s a disease spreading through the general population and it can be hazardous to our health. It can eek into our everyday lives, infecting our insides and spreading to our loved ones. The more we let it affect us, the more it affects others. It’s called Supposed to Syndrome and it is spread simply by speaking.
We’ve all contributed to its spread. Don’t deny it. Because we’ve all muttered one or more of the following phrases:
- “It wasn’t supposed to be like this.”
- “This wasn’t supposed to be my life.”
- “They weren’t supposed to die.”
- “I was supposed to be married/have kids/have my dream job by now.”
And every time we utter a phrase like this, we contribute to the spread of Suppose to Syndrome. This ailment can lead to extreme anxiety, prolonged frustration, problems performing everyday tasks and unwarranted anger. It can alter our mood and the moods of those around us. The effects of this syndrome can be felt most acutely when we forget one simple fact-
There is no supposed to.
There are plans.
There are intentions.
There are goals.
But, there are also obstacles.
There is change.
There is growth.
There is life.
And much of the time, life gets in the way of supposed to.
We’re supposed to graduate high school, go to college, get a job, get married, have kids, maybe travel, raise the kids, work the job, retire, maybe travel a little more, get some grandkids…you get the idea.
But, the world is changing. College is getting more expensive. Jobs are paying less. It’s harder to retire. There’s more to do, more to see. Sometimes college gets put on hold. Sometimes family members get sick. Sometimes marriages don’t work out. Sometimes we can’t find the right job or the right person. Sometimes kids don’t happen. Sometimes plans change mid-plan, sometimes they have to.
Sometimes we are doing exactly what we were supposed to be doing and we still aren’t happy.
I’m not saying don’t make plans. Plans are great. Vision is great. Goals keep us focused. But, we also have to accept that there is a lot we cannot control. What we can do is keep moving forward. Make a new plan. See each twist and turn not as a detour away from our supposed to, but as a scenic route toward a new supposed to.
As life changes us and our plans, if we spend our days worrying that this isn’t where we were supposed to be, we will miss the beauty of where we are. Because maybe where we are, while it might not be what we planned, IS exactly where we are supposed to be.