Something someone said to me this week got me thinking. A lovely lady enquired into hypnotherapy and explained that she wanted to do it because she needed to “be selfish and put myself first for once”.
Said with such unadulterated determination, I have to admit, I let out a little cheer inside!
During a time of extreme division, where everything is seemingly so black or white. You can find that there can be an unrealistic expectation to be completely perfect, a true martyr.
Of course, I am not saying that being selfless, altruistic, kind, giving, non-judgemental and generous is a bad thing. Not at all, it is a wonderful way to live and to find fulfilment within yourself.
However, there is that risk of being so giving, so generous, that you forget to look after the most important person in your life…
How can you continue to care for your family, friends, pets, career or home, if you are so burned out, you no longer have the energy or mental strength to continue?
Let’s redefine the word “Selfish”, lets embrace selfishness as a core humanistic need.
Take that breather, go out for that lunch, hell… make it weekend! Go shopping and actually spend money on yourself GUILT FREE for once. Visit the cinema alone one afternoon to watch that film you have been waiting to see, focus on your passions and hobbies, read a book, learn to say no to those demands you don't have the time for, rediscover the essence of you.
You’re not just a parent, child, grandparent, carer, friend, employee, volunteer. All of the daily responsibilities of these roles can overwhelm us, suffocating the true you. The true you that is always there, but just needs a little time to come out sometimes.
And once you do this, guess what happens?
The world carries on without you for a few hours. You return feeling refreshed, rejuvenated, energised and even more capable of taking on your responsibilities now you’re no longer burned out, exhausted and feeling like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders.
If we lived our lives thinking entirely just of ourselves, what an awful life that would be. I’m not talking about spending your life savings on a brand new Mercedes and eating chocolate muffins for every meal. But there is absolutely nothing wrong with taking some time out focusing entirely on you.
Life is tough, but life is also pretty great too, so don’t drain the fun out of the great stuff by introducing self-imposed guilt for being selfish once in a while. Hurrah for selfishness!