Being described as “selfish” is usually considered a negative character flaw… and sometimes it is. There are certain times and relationships where it is appropriate and even necessary to put others’ needs before our own. In close, loving relationships such as with a spouse or our children it is better to be selfless most of the time. However, even then, we must draw the line and do what’s best for ourselves.
It seems especially hard for women to put ourselves first. We’ll wear ourselves out trying to be everything to everyone. We feel guilty about saying, “no” even when we should.
I’ve decided that starting now, I’m going to be unapologetically SELFISH. Here are five ways that being selfish is good for us and the people that matter in our lives.
1. I am more productive when I have fewer things on my “to do list.”
I’m all about creating a list of tasks that need to be done. But when that list is a mile long, I feel overwhelmed and anxious. So, I’ll prioritize what’s important, delegate the rest, and say, “no” to everything else.
2. When it comes to social activities, I’ll only commit to things I really want to do whenever possible.
There’s no worse feeling than agreeing to attend an event and regretting it on the day of when you don’t want to go. Save yourself and the host the trouble and politely decline the invitation from the beginning.
3. I will put my marriage/family first.
Yes, that is being selfish because my family is important to me. I don’t have children, but that doesn’t mean I have lots of free time. I love my husband and spending time with him. So, when it’s family time, everything else can wait.
4. Work-life balance is necessary.
I will work a regularly scheduled work day that includes breaks, time off, and vacation. I am not available 24/7/365 even if you see me on social media.
5. Taking care of myself is my number one priority. Body, mind, and soul.
It’s impossible to put my best foot forward in any area of my life if I’m not taking care of myself. What that means to me is getting proper rest, being physically active, eating nutrition meals, taking supplements, and getting regular check-ups. I’ll also keep my mind sharp and feed my soul by doing things that I enjoy and things that help me grow.
When we’re our best selves, everyone benefits. It’s OK to say, “no” without explaining yourself. Be selfish and feel good about it.
Here are a few of my favorite things to do for myself:
Sleeping in or taking a nap
Listening to music
At-home spa treatments
Quality time with my husband
Going to the park
Writing hand-written letters and postcards
Browsing in stores
Treating myself at a coffee shop
Quiet time alone
What things do you enjoy doing for yourself?
Jennifer Amoako is a proud military wife and a Whole30 Certified Coach specializing in holistic wellness. Her mission is to change the perception of what “healthy” looks like. Jennifer currently lives in the Washington, D.C. area with her husband.