The crossroad of Should and Must

lifestyle blogging, vancouver lifestyle, writer, spending detox

A few years ago I can across the book The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion by Elle Luna. Since I’ve been reading self development books for quite some time it didn’t speak to me the way I’m sure the Elle had intended. Instead it has stuck with me in more practical everyday events. Elle wrote her book to help those who wanted to know what to pursue in their life and career, I refer to my crossroad of should and must on my everyday tasks and activities.

As a wife, mother, independent woman and business owner I am constantly pulled in many different directions with a pile of laundry on one side, my endless to-do list on the other, and all the things I want to do in front of me. My crossroad of should and must happens multiple times a day and I’m constantly trying to battle the wills and wants of my family along with them.

The more that I talk to other women I find that they too feel like they are pulled in many different directions and don’t quite know how to manage their should and must, and most end up feeling trapped under the trap list.

I’m here to tell you that you’re not alone and you can find a way out of it that is unique to you. You’ll walk away feeling more in control of your day, breathe easier, and love yourself more.

1. Create a daily/weekly/monthly requirement list

I create these usually every year, sometimes twice a year if I feel like something needs to be added/taken away. This will be completely unique to you and your life, but here is mine:


  • waking up slowly, before the children
  • movement and relaxation for a min. of 30 mins
  • shower and shave
  • moisturize body
  • hair and makeup
  • coffee
  • healthy breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • tidy kitchen
  • min of 15 mins of dedicated playtime with the children


  • hair washed  and styled (I do only wash my hair once a week!)
  • meal plan and grocery order
  • update mint (budget app on my phone)
  • min of 30 mins of writing time at least 3 times per week
  • quality conversation with my husband
  • clothes washed, folded, and put away


  • clean house
  • rotate toys
  • review and adjust budget
  • review children’s clothes

2. Create a list of the things you feel like you should do

Again, this will be completely unique to you and your life. Something on my list might be something you must do or love to do and vis versa. This list might be really long or really short, either way it is never wrong. Here is mine:

  • make a million dollars 😉
  • have a closet full of on trend clothes
  • know what the latest places are to see, do, eat
  • have a clean and organized home at all times
  • blog and send out a newsletter at least once a week
  • send out yearly christmas cards, valentines cards, halloween treats
  • live abroad
  • be active in a charity or networking group
  • be an attachment parent
  • have children who eat everything I make and never have a bite of sugar
  • have a house with grass and room for our children to run

3. Create a list of things you truly want

This list might be harder to create, because you need to remove and let go of all of your “should do” and any shinny objects or dreams you see your friends or social media influencers have and really hone in what it is you truly want. However, this is might be the most enjoyable list to create because you’ll see what your true desires are right in front of you. Here is mine:

  • own a thriving and profitable business
  • write and publish books
  • have loving and thriving relationships with my children and husband
  • travel the world
  • serve delicious and healthy meals that my children will eat, even if it’s only a portion
  • be kind, and courageous, all while following my curiosity

4. Look at should and want list and eliminate

Now you look at your should and want list and see if there is anything that overlaps or is similar. Take my “have children who eat everything I make and never have a bite of sugar” and “serve delicious and healthy meals that my children will eat, even if it’s only a portion”, here I know that my should and wants are overlapping but knowing the reality of my children I know that I need to create meals that appeal to their pallet as well as my own. Now we have pizza Friday with a movie while the other days of the week I cook more healthy meals while making sure there is something they like on the plate. If we look at “make a million dollars” and “own a thriving and profitable business” I could put the standard of making a million dollars is what I’m striving for, but I know that is on my should list, because that is what society deems of when “you’ve made it”. But what I want, more than a million dollars is to own a thriving and profitable business, so I’ll eliminate the goal of a million dollars and stay true to being profitable instead.

Go through both of your lists and really hone in on what it is you want and see what you can combine, outsource, or completely eliminate all together. The more things you can eliminate the better!

5. Take what is left and see if you want to fit it into your must list

Now we go back to our first list, the things that must get done in your day/week/month so that you feel in control, can breathe easier, and feel like you’re taking care of yourself. See if you can fit the things you want into your schedule while paying attention to where it fits and how it fits, and how you feel when you place it there. Is there a restriction or a sense of freedom? If there is a restriction in your chest or throat really ask yourself if you truly want it. It could just be fear playing with you afraid you’re changing things up. Really, pay attention to you and your needs. This is all about you anyway.

So there you have it, how to manage the crossroad of should and must! Please share below if you go through the process and how you found it, I would love to hear from you!

This post contains affiliate links, so I may receive a commission if you chose to purchase the mentioned book.