I don't know how to Be Selfish. In fact, I don't even like the two words together. A few friends have recently taken on this moniker as the current status of their lives. "I'm in a selfish place" or "It's good to be selfish." I ponder this and the eternal optimist inside would rather view it as "Self-Serving." Although I get it, it's just something about that word that doesn't work for me.
I think the intention is, "Think of yourself first."
But I never thought that I wasn't considering myself. My nature is to do for others. I enjoy assisting and giving.
"At what cost are you doing for others?"
Ok, Ok...It's beginning to sink in: sometimes it is neccessary to say NO.
Eckhart Tolle calls it a, "High Quality NO." A High Quality No, consists of you not existing in a reactive or blaming state because you have to say NO. Instead, you simply state it and keep it moving. And that's a whole other class I must take...
In the past, I have said Yes and have become angry with myself for doing so. That anger transitioned into gossip and despise. WHAT THE FREAK?! What's the point of doing for someone if you aren't doing it out of Love? We spend so much time trying to People Please and be "liked." When I review the many times I wanted to say No, I inevitably recognize the pattern...
"If I do this, they'll respect me." Or "Maybe they'll change when they see that I did that." People don't change for you, they change for themselves and your changing colors for someone else is an unfortunate loss of identity. (Chile...preach to the Choir!).
Remember Coming To America? The scene where Eddie Murphy as Prince Akeem is trying to get to know Vanessa Bell Calloway's character, Imani? He asks her a few questions about herself, she always responds, "Whatever, you like. Whatever you like." It's a powerful moment of self discovery. We've all, at some point lived it. Some carry it with them for years. Others are more aware and successfully change these behaviors. It's easy to lose sight of oneself, specifically where there is another person concerned; forgoing your desires for those of another. You view it as giving, and in your head it is just that. What it really is, is GIVING TOO MUCH! I have been all too guilty of the latter.
I used to think...the more you gave, the more love you would receive (a fact I don't necessarily disagree with.) However, there is something to be said about knowing when extending yourself becomes...foolish. If you reach a point where you are giving (specifically to someone else) and that person isn't grateful, yet you continue down the same path thinking you'll change them...FOOLISH! If in giving to another, you find that you have exhausted yourself, yet again you continue giving...FOOLISH! A tough pill to swallow but not impossible to change.
I'm trying to find the balance between being selfish and Self-Fulfilling. A major aspect is Self- Love. When I master this, the effects of saying no and taking a stand won't seem so selfish, eh?