Learning to be SELFISH has changed everything in my life.
Yes, you read that right… SELFISH.
I spent the majority of my life always saying “YES”.
Always feeling obligated to attend everything I was invited to
Always moving around my own schedule around to better benefit someone else.
Always putting off the things I needed to do for MYSELF (ya know like grocery shopping, getting my car to the shop, showering, those sort of things were always put on the back burner)
Sure, that may have made me readily available to other people, always just a phone call away. But it was also slowly killing me.
Looking back now I realize that I allowed my NEED to please everyone to hold me back in so many ways.
I would get so fed up, so overwhelmed that I would just NOT answer the phone. OR I would make up some LIE about why I couldn’t be somewhere or help with something.
In turn all that did was make me insanely guilty. So you mix frustration and overwhelm with guilt and well, it’s a pretty shitty combination.
I realized one day that I wasn’t actually serving any of these people by acting this way.
I certainly wasn’t serving myself.
Think about it; if you’re exhausted and don’t really want to be somewhere in the first place you’re typically late, half ass the gift, feel uncomfortable, and are not in the best mood. All of which gives you anxiety and makes it even worse.. So tell me how that is helping anyone?
It’s not. It’s a perpetual cycle. An unhealthy cycle that too many people know all too well.
That’s when I started reminding myself daily “YOU CAN’T POUR FROM AN EMPTY CUP”
I repeat that to myself every single day now.
My own well being and mental sanity MUST come first. No option. It just has to.
So what did I do to change this life long habit?
I started taking care of me first.
I schedule in time for me to relax. I literally write “Bath” or “Yoga” or “Relax” in my schedule and mark it as “BUSY” so no one can access my calendar at those times. And I don’t alter that. If someone calls and says “Meet me for a drink tonight”, I’ll decline because I already have plans….WITH MYSELF.
Which brings me to my next point, I started saying NO.
If I don’t have the time or already have something planned or it’s the only ounce of free time I have that week or don’t want to go,I simply say NO. You MUST respect your own time. You MUST respect what you KNOW you need in order to feel good and be happy. If you don’t respect your own time, no one else will.
I started telling the truth.
Quit bullshitting and own up to what’s important to you. There’s nothing wrong with making yourself a priority. Example: If the day ran long or something came up or I just had a rough day, I just say that. Instead of ignoring the call or making up an excuse or lie, I just tell the truth. “Hey, today was hectic and I’m just tired. I’m going to need a rain check on tonight” End of story.
Sure, I’ve been called a “selfish bitch” because of this approach. I’ve been told that I’ve “changed” since adapting this new mentality. But when I take a step back and look at the overall changes in my life since I’ve started taking care of ME first, I see all GOOD changes.
The relationships with the people I love the most have become stronger.
The people who were just using me and sucking my time and energy aren’t in my circle anymore.
I feel better every single day.
I’m able to have such more deep and meaningful conversations with people I encounter.
My stress levels are at a minimum.
I’ve realized that being SELFISH IS NOT A BAD THING.
It’s actually the best gift you can give to yourself, and those you love the most