When we carry a load of shoulds and shouldn’ts imposed on us by others, we become like this ragged, struggling figure trying to make his way uphill. “Go faster, try harder, reach the top!” shouts the foolish tyrant he carries on his shoulder, while the tyrant himself is crowned with an imperious rooster.
If life these days feels like just a struggle from the cradle to the grave, it could be time to shrug your shoulders and see what it feels like to walk without these characters on your back. You have your own mountains to conquer, your own dreams to fulfill, but you will never have the energy to pursue them until you release yourself from all the expectations you’ve gathered from others but now think are your own.
Chances are, they exist only in your own mind, but that doesn’t mean they can’t weigh you down. It’s time to lighten up, and send them on their way.