I Shouldn't HAVE to -How this Mindset is Sabotaging Your Relationships

Feb 01, 2024


In a world where we often find ourselves navigating complex relationships and interpersonal dynamics, it's not uncommon to encounter the infamous "I shouldn't HAVE to..." attitude. In our latest podcast episode (Episode 42 of the Re-MIND Podcast), we delved deep into this mindset, exploring how an obsession with fairness and justice can inadvertently lead to unnecessary stress.

Today, let's further unpack this issue and discuss how developing self-awareness and improving communication skills can be the keys to healthier relationships and a more fulfilling life.

The 'I Shouldn't HAVE to...' Mentality:

Picture this: you're facing a challenge or need assistance, but a voice inside your head insists, "I shouldn't HAVE to ask for help." It's a sentiment many of us have experienced – a resistance to expressing our needs, desires, or even acknowledging vulnerability. This mindset often stems from a belief in an idealised sense of fairness, where others should intuitively understand and cater to our unspoken needs… “if they loved us”. When they miss the mark, our unconscious mind uses this as evidence that we’re unworthy of love or not good enough.

The Strain of Unspoken Expectations:

Unfortunately, expecting people to be mind readers places an immense burden on relationships, be they personal or professional. The stress of unmet expectations and unexpressed needs can lead to misunderstandings, resentment, and a breakdown in communication. In our podcast, we highlighted how this attitude can hinder personal growth and hinder the development of meaningful connections.

Cultivating Self-Awareness:

The first step towards breaking free from the 'I shouldn't HAVE to...' mindset is cultivating self-awareness. Take a moment to reflect on your own needs, desires, and emotions. What drives your expectations? Are they rooted in realistic expectations or idealised notions of fairness? Acknowledging and understanding your own needs is the foundation for effective communication.

Expressing Yourself for Effective Communication:

Once armed with self-awareness, the next crucial step is developing the language capacity to express your needs and desires. Effective communication involves articulating your thoughts, feelings, and expectations clearly and assertively. In our podcast episode, we shared real-life examples of how practicing open communication fosters understanding, reduces stress, and strengthens relationships.

Need Help With Personal Growth?

For those seeking professional guidance in developing self-awareness and improving communication skills, we at the Re-MIND Institute can help. Reach out to us on any of our socials, or contact us by email at [email protected] if you observe that this is a barrier holding you back in your relationships.


The 'I shouldn't HAVE to...' mindset may be deeply ingrained, but it's not insurmountable. By fostering self-awareness, practicing open communication, and seeking professional guidance when needed, we can break free from the constraints of unrealistic expectations. Let's empower ourselves to express our needs, feel seen and heard, and cultivate relationships that thrive on understanding and communication. Check out Episode 42 of the Re-MIND Podcast for a deeper dive into these transformative concepts.