All through my life I’ve been the kind of person who put other people’s needs first, whether that’s a lover, a friend or a boss. It was as if I couldn’t express my own wants and desires, so I lived totally and utterly to please others.
Looking back I know that I didn’t think I was good enough or worthy enough to be who I was or to ask for what I wanted. I’d hide behind the façade of someone who was a good laugh, up for anything and made sure I didn’t shine bright enough to dull anyone else’s shine.
This was until about a year ago, I’d split with my boyfriend with whom I still wore a mask and pretended to be the ‘right’ girl for. I’d had enough, enough of being someone I wasn’t and living a life that was as far from what I’d ever envisioned my life to turn out. So I ended my relationship, feeling completely relieved and ready to start working towards my own dreams and desires.
For once in my life I was finally thinking of myself and only myself. I had to you see, if I didn’t I’d end up exactly where I was again, in a dead end relationship trying to fake it. Being selfish sometimes isn’t a bad thing, it means taking the time out to look at what you want out of life, deciding to act upon it and putting everything else on the ‘back burner’ for a while.
So I thought I’d share some of the ways being selfish is a good thing, because you might just need to know that it’s OK:
Spending time on your own so you can work out who you are
This has to be the number one priority of a ‘selfish’ person. For anyone to truly find out who they are and what they want out of life, it’s very important to create space and time on your own. When you spend time on your own, you get a chance to work out what really makes you tick, what makes you happy and whether the person you are on the outside is really who you are deep inside. When you are constantly around other people, you tend not to be as honest as you would like and you don’t get a good chance at delving deeper and reflecting on who you are as a person.
Saying ‘no’ more often
When you are selfish you tend not to agree with everything or go along with what other people want all the time. Saying ‘no’ is a big stepping stone into discovery what matters to you and what is important in your life. You don’t need to worry about what other people think of you just because you say ‘no’ that little bit more. If they know and accept you as you are they’ll understand. Saying ‘no’ is very liberating because it exercises your confidence muscles and helps to put your priorities into perspective. This is about making you the best person you can be, by being real and honest. Saying no when you want to say no, is a huge part of that.
Get rid of what’s keeping you from being happy
This can be anything from ending a relationship, because you both have different dreams for the future, to telling your parents that you don’t want to study as a doctor just because she wants you to. It’s about doing things for yourself because you want to, and not because other people want you do things to make them happy. Life isn’t about people pleasing, it’s about finding out what you want out of life, where you need to be and how you are going to get there. If you don’t follow your heart, you’ll only end up miserable which in turn makes everyone else just as unhappy as you! You don’t want any regret in life, so start to weed those people and circumstances that are keeping you from being happy.
Find out what your bliss is and follow that
If you aren’t following your bliss, then what are you doing here? Life is about finding your passion and living like it’s your last day on this earth. Remember we are only here a short while so make the best of it whilst you can. The world will try to make you fit into what it thinks you should be doing, so it’s going to take all your strength of character to go with what makes you fulfilled and happiest. If you want to travel the world on the back of a horse, go do it. If you want to live in a shed somewhere in the back and beyond completely on your own, then go do that too! Whatever it is don’t let anything stop you. Remember you are at your best when you are happiest so don’t conform to an ordinary life, go do what you want and then inspire others to do the same!
There are tons more ways to be selfish, but I’d be here all day if I listed them. The thing to remember is that as long as you aren’t hurting anyone intentionally with your actions, you can go do whatever you want with your life! Your life is yours, so do what you want when you want and go be happy!
So do you think you are selfish and if not how do you think you can improve upon that?
Paula loves people and connecting. She has spent her life going from one experience to another ranging from her love life to her career choices. You can find her writing daily at The Daily Grow Paula’s blog dedicated to giving daily inspiring, thought provoking and growth motivating messages. You can sign up for her FREE challenge ‘The 7 Day Grow Yourself Challenge’to get you growing again.