Is it a negative one?
The purpose of writing to you today is to reframe what it can mean to be selfish and to make a case for why many need more of it.
First, let’s make one thing abundantly clear: I’m not advocating for you to become an overt narcissist, dismiss others, or abandon all external responsibility.
That’s not being selfish in the way I’ll be describing, that’s just being an asshole.
The lens through which we’re discussing selfishness is that we must be selfish with our own self-development if we want to best serve those around us.
I’m sure you and I both know countless people who would drop everything to help their friends and family, but rarely take a minute to do anything for themselves.
I myself have been that way to a degree and still will always do anything I can to help those closest to me… absolutely.
But, I know many who are deeply unfulfilled in their life because they don’t truly know themselves.
They use all their energy on others, leaving very little for themselves.
I’d argue that the best way to help others make lasting positive change is to lead by example, not to simply drop everything and do their work for them.
It all depends of course, but I’ll wrap it up here.
If you feel guilty for going to the gym, taking a walk, or doing anything for yourself because it feels like time spent away from family, meetings, your work, or your friends – please, don’t.
It’s not fair to you – the most important person there is.
Furthermore, the people in your life that truly care about you should want you to be selfish with yourself because they know that’ll lead you to your best.
If you’re surrounded by people who want all of your energy and attention (always,) they may not be best to have around.
I’ll tell you from experience, it feels damn better to give to others when you yourself are grounded and taken care of.
I live for this stuff – writing, coaching, teaching, helping.
I do it every single day and it makes me so happy.
But, that’s only able to happen because I take care of myself first, always.
I hope you’ll do the same today.
You deserve that.