From a very young age, most of us are taught to share. This behavior is usually praised, appreciated, and rewarded. We may grow up with the perceived understanding that someone who’s able to give selflessly is “good” and accepted. Selfishness on the other hand, is associated with being immoral and is perceived to be a characteristic of a negative or “bad” person. But it is essential for us to understand that things are not always black and white and they are often more complex than they seem.
Normal And Extreme Selfishness
It is vital to note that we’re all selfish beings. Somewhere deep within us, we want to prioritize our needs and there’s nothing wrong with that. Problems and conflicts arise when people are selfish to the point that they prioritize themselves while not taking into consideration the needs of others or if they try to achieve something for personal gain at the expense of the people around them. Again, this does not mean they are “bad” people. Their extreme selfishness might just be an indicator of a deeper issue like an insecurity of not having enough or a fear of losing control. They may also be extremely selfish as a result of the nature of their upbringing or childhood environment.
You Need To Be Selfish Sometimes
1. It May Be Self-Destructive To Give When You Don’t Have Enough Yourself
We can only give when we have. If we ourselves don’t have the time or energy to maintain our being, it will be highly destructive to begin to give from our depleting source. These are times when it’s okay to be selfish and put yourself first. For example, if you’re mentally and physically exhausted after a busy day at work and someone desperately needs your help, you don’t have to fulfill their needs just because they asked. It’s okay to evaluate the situation and say no or that you will get back to them later. Learning to say no and being selfish occasionally is a necessary step to take when you need to protect yourself.
Be Selfish Today So That You Can Be Selfless Tomorrow
Airline services always recommend that in the event of an emergency, while travelling with a person who may need assistance, it is essential that one secures their own oxygen mask first before helping another. This analogy resonates with the idea of helping yourself first so that you may be able to better help other people in the future. You will be of more help when you’re at your best than if you try and help someone while you’re struggling to get by.
3. Selfishness May Make You Happier And Healthier
4. Selfishness Can Help Build Better Relationships
A person who acts with their self-interest in mind is less likely to compromise on who they are. It also helps them set boundaries in relationships which is essential in order to keeps them from being manipulated or controlled by their partner. On the other hand, people who prioritize other people’s needs over their own are more likely to get used or taken advantage of.