Have you ever felt guilty while taking care of yourself? Or, have you ever felt that putting yourself first is wrong? If you’ve never experienced these feelings, then congrats because you’re already being in the right track.
However, tons of people in this world experience this feeling everyday. A recent study has found that around 73% of the world population struggle with self care and mostly because of these strange feeling of guiltiness. Have you ever wondered where these strange feelings actually came from and how these feelings can impact your life? Well, in this article you’re going to get all the answers as well as knowing about the proper ways to get over these feelings.
So, if you’re interested, then continue reading to the end.
Self Love Isn’t Selfish At All
Where do these feelings come from
Well, if you ever had these feelings, it’s mostly because you think that self love is selfish which makes you feel less important to yourself and gives you the feeling of guilt whenever you try to put yourself first or try to make yourself the priority. This idea ‘self-love is selfish’ doesn’t always come to our mind automatically. There used to be several situations which make us feel in that way. Some of those situations are :
As we grow up, we learn to socialize more by time and also get to learn and accept different invisible rules to help us to live properly.
However, are all the rules that we’re taught always right? Nope. So, does it mean that society sometimes teaches us something wrong? Again the answer is a big ‘No’
What happens here actually is that sometimes it only represents an exaggerate version of those simple rules and doesn’t represent the real ones.
To make it clear, it’s told that ‘for making your life great, you need to contribute something to the mankind’ which is absolutely great. However, what we’re taught often is ‘sacrifice yourself and hurt yourself for others’ Like can you remember those times in your childhood when any of your friends hit you and then when you tried to hit them back, your parents came to you and told you to apologize and not to act like a selfish.
Like seriously what’s selfish here? The same happens when it’s in school. Staying peaceful is good and we definitely shouldn’t teach our little kids to become rebellious, however I think we should also teach them to protest when something bad happens. But, not many think about this and this is how a kid start developing this from her childhood to her whole life.
2. Selfish people around us
Not everyone we think of as our friend isn’t always a friend. There used to be some people around us who are really selfish and can act quite touchy time to time to fulfil their wishes.
They act like oversensitive, gets offended easily and cries out when they cannot get something from you easily. Specially, when they understand that there is already something like the idea ‘self love is selfish’ growing within you, they take the advantage and grow this more. As a result, when they hit you, you cannot hit them back. Otherwise, they call you a selfish.
These people are truly intimidating and so fake and dangerous that they can drag your mental situation to any point just to fulfil their wishes by you. So, whenever you spot someone like this in your life, eliminate them from your life as soon as possible.
3. Low self esteem
Sometimes you might be the reason of your own problems. Or, maybe your low self esteem can be. Low self esteem might happen for several reasons. Specially, when you’re only focusing on your weaknesses or when you have this people-pleaser demon within yourself.
Even the feelings of constant self-consciousness and not thinking much for yourself can also be the reasons of your low self esteem. And that is what starts making you feel less important to yourself and that toxic idea ‘self love is selfish’ starts taking over your brain.
How it can impact your life negatively
1. Can make you lose your identity and authenticity
Most people who used to believe in this idea that self love is selfish, often used to feel bad or guilty while putting themselves first. As a result, they often used to give credits to other people and always hides behind and never shows up.
Even many of them never care about their own voices. While following and giving voices to other people, they lose their own. Which often makes them lose their identity and authenticity. So, if you don’t want to lose them all, then it’s time that you eliminate that toxic belief from your mind and finally start taking care of yourself.
2. Makes it harder to say ‘no’
When you will start believing that self love is selfish, it will automatically create an idea in your brain that maybe saying ‘no’ to other people is bad. Because you might end up hurting them in that way and then it will be selfishness. As a result, it will keep being harder and harder for you to say ‘no’.
Even as a part of it, you may often find yourself engaging in activities that you really don’t want to do or at least things that aren’t good for you. And in this way, this toxic idea may end up undermining you badly by time.
3. Forces you to engage in toxic friendships and relationships
As I have told in the very beginning, that everyone around you isn’t always your friend. Even sometimes there can be people in your circle who aren’t good for you. Keeping them in your life will only be like you’re ruining your own life. Because, the longer you will keep them, the longer you will suffer. As a result, it’s so important to let them go or remove them from your life.
However, for doing it, firstly you will have to face them which takes an amount of courage which is literally impossible to have when you are believing that ‘self love is selfish’. Because, then even if you will try, an inner part of your brain will say yourself that it’s illegal to do, or maybe you’re being too selfish or really quick to judge which will never let you to be there. Even when you will finally have the courage to face them, they might take advantage of your this wicked belief and can blackmail you emotionally which will ultimately fail your decision.
4. Creates the feeling of guiltiness whenever you try to do something for yourself
There is a line that says , “When you will start doing what’s good for you, you will piss off a lot of people.” and it’s absolutely the same here. Everyone wishes to have a better life. However, you cannot expect a magical thing to come and do it for you. You’ve to do it all by yourself.
For making your life better, you will have to do some activities like eliminating the wrong people from your life, making time for yourself and caring about your own voice which isn’t quite easy to do, specially when you’re a believer of the wrong idea ‘self love is selfish’.
Because then, you won’t be able to remove toxic people from your life as you will doubt your own decision . You won’t be able to make time for yourself, as you won’t be able to say ‘no’ as it may hurt them. You won’t be able to care about your own voice, as you will think that others might feel bad if they will feel less. And thus, while being kind to others, you will be left behind with your life.
5. Can make you feel less important to yourself
As you will continue to give more importance and more priorities to others, consequently one day or the other, you will start feeling less important to yourself. I know it might sound a bit ironic. But, I can tell you, it will happen.
Because, they you won’t feel like yourself anymore. You will feel like you’re living the life for other people. For caring about their opinions and fulfilling their wishes and not for yourself. That’s why, it’s so crucial that when you give priorities to other people, you don’t forget to make yourself a priority too.
How to finally overcome these feelings
It’s easy to grow a wrong idea in mind but it’s not easy to break one. When you know that the idea ‘self love is selfish’ already hurting you, it’s time to eliminate this thought from your mind and life. However it might not be done overnight as this idea is so powerful and influential. However, here are some tips that might help you to overcome these feelings :
1. Set honest and polite boundaries
Finding is so difficult to say ‘no’? Try this. When people come to you asking for their needs, don’t hesitate to talk to them about your needs too. If you don’t feel like doing this, then tell them politely that you need a break.
Be honest and straightforward and kind while saying this. And I can ensure you that it won’t surely hurt them but will make them more respectful towards you.
2. Remove the negative people
For having a fresh and clean mind, you need to first live in a clean environment and for this you will need a kind community or circle. You see there are both good and bad people around us. It’s not easy to recognize them all.
You cannot control the people around you but you can control who will be around you. So, remove those from your circle whom you think to be a selfish and more of an opportunist than an actual friend. Believe in your decisions. At first, it might be critical to do that but slowly everything will start being okay.
Here are some tips for cutting off the toxic people and knowing when to walk away.
3. Give importance to your emotions and feelings
I know that it’s not correct to care about emotions all the time as they always don’t give us the right directions. However, it’s necessary to pay attention to your feelings. Maybe once in a while but don’t be careless.
Don’t make yourself feel that your feelings are always wrong. Talk to yourself. Start journalising and note down your feelings. When you’re doing something, ask yourself if you truly want to do this. And thus how you’ll slowly find the way.
4. Celebrate your wins
A big part of making yourself feel worthy is to remember about your achievements. You don’t brag about your achievements to celebrate them or to make them remarkable. If you wish and can, then jot down your tiny achievements in a notebook or something like this. Write down your efforts and struggles while making that.
Every time you feel like losing, look at that notebook and take inspirations. Every time you feel like you don’t deserve this, look at that notebook and you will find the courage again.
5. Don’t allow yourself to accept any toxic suggestions from anyone
Let’s go back to the very beginning where we’ve said that how this idea used to grow within us slowly from our childhood. You’ll receive many suggestions like this in your life that will try to make you feel worthless.
You cannot stop people from giving you unnecessary suggestions. But, you can always chose whose suggestions to accept and which suggestions you don’t . So, be selective while allowing yourself to accept suggestions because they can always have a big impact on your life.
6. Remember that you deserve to be the main character
Most often do we hide behind because we don’t feel the courage to be there. We feel like like, people won’t like hearing to us or maybe others are better than us.
However, always remember that your voice matters too. You deserve it all. So, instead of always giving credits and appreciations to other people, kindly also give some appreciations to yourself.
My final thoughts : In this article, I've tried a bit to talk about this stereotype. This is one kind of toxic idea that if you won't take steps to remove it from your mind, then you will never know that how it will slowly destroy you. All I want to say is that, when you show kindness to others. Please also save some for yourself. Because you deserve it.
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