May 4 2012

Self Improvement Tip: Being Selfish Is Okay Sometimes

When you were growing up, you were probably reprimanded on multiple occasions to share with siblings, friends, cousins and others while you played. It was so easy to want to keep your precious toys close to you and not let anyone else touch them. Sure, the other kids probably wouldn’t hurt your toys, but the toys were important to you. When you are grown, those early lessons of self improvement you learned stick with you, making it difficult for you to be selfish as an adult.

In general, it isn’t good to be selfish. It makes you feel good to share what you have with others who need it. For instance, if a coworker comes to you and asks for help with a project, you could say no because you have your own work. However, you drop what you are doing and help your coworker because he was nice enough to ask. Your own work might suffer a little, but you would feel far too guilty if you left your coworker hanging.

Despite the positives of not being selfish, you can also benefit from being selfish, at least some of the time. If you have ever talked to someone about self improvement, you may have heard that putting yourself first is important too. You don’t need to always put everyone else before your own needs and desires. In fact, if you do, you are far more likely to find that people are taking advantage of you. You deserve to be happy and have your needs met too.

When you put yourself first, you will feel more confident and can lead a happier life. You don’t need to turn others down all the time, but you deserve to be treated as a person as well. Therefore, when someone makes a request from you, take a little time to consider that request and then make a decision. Weigh out the pros and cons of helping that person with their request against denying it. For instance, if you go back to the coworker example, the project your coworker needs help with is due next week; however, the project you are working on is due tomorrow. It would be much better to say no and finish your project first.

Putting your own needs first can be hard for some people. You may be trained to always put others’ needs before your own as an act of kindness. Through self improvement techniques, you can learn when it is okay to say no and when it is okay to say yes. You should never sacrifice your own happiness for the sake of someone else, even if it means hurting someone else’s feelings.

In the end, your happiness is in your own hands. If you don’t focus on self improvement and learning the difference between being selfish in a bad way and being selfish in a good way, you may find yourself taken advantage of by everyone around you. From coworkers to family, you may find that it is so difficult to say no, you end up overextending yourself and ultimately sacrificing your own satisfaction.