The Importance of putting yourself first
The word selfish tends to be used negatively to describe people who lack consideration for others, but what if we used it as a positive? What if the word selfish meant putting yourself first in certain situations to allow self-growth and appreciation? It is important as individuals that we know our boundaries in order for us to know when it's the right time to take a step back in situations to prioritise ourselves. There is so much value in prioritising your own mental and physical well-being over situations that are simply not healthy for you to be around. Prioritising your own goals over someone else's is an essential skill to learn, it's easy to be swept up in other peoples ideas of fun or even their career prospects. Allowing yourself to be selfish and take time purely for you to learn about what you really want to get out of life could be the key to a truly fulfilled life.
How to be selfish
Being selfish can involve many things, it can involve cutting off friends that no longer bring out the best in you and who maybe don't strive for the same things in life as you do. Being selfish can be prioritising your feelings over someone else's in certain situations and it can also be prioritising your mental health over pieces of work. Now, of course I am not telling you to remove yourself from uncomfortable situations and never work, as you do always need to ensure you are pushing yourself to allow yourself to grow. However, I am suggesting that when the things you are doing are no longer bringing much joy to your life, it is ok to take a step back and think. Think that there could be something you could be doing that may involve being a bit selfish in order for you to self care and enjoy your time with yourself and potentially new people.
That being said, allowing yourself to find the right people to surround yourself with is vital! As we grow older our goals change and therefore our lifestyles tend to change too. It's always good to have some people in life that share similar views and career prospects as you in order for you to flourish into the person you want to be.
Enjoying your own company is key
The idea of being on your own can scare a lot of people, and that's understandable, but I believe spending time with yourself is necessary if you want to truly understand yourself and what you want to get out of life. Allowing yourself to reconnect with your own intentions rather than tethering yourself to external forces is crucial to letting you love your own company.
Things you can do to reconnect with yourself:
Having healthy routines: having regular tasks that you do every day or every week can be very grounding and can allow you to begin to know yourself and how different things affect your mood and your lifestyle. Small things to add into a routine could be reading a book before bed or when you wake up, or doing some yoga or going to the gym multiple times a week to really engage with your mind and your body.
Solo dates: You don't have to go to a big fancy restaurant to treat yourself, you could simply take yourself on a refreshing walk and then stop for some food or a drink, this can really allow you to listen to what you really want rather than just going somewhere to follow a crowd.
Putting down your phone: I cannot stress this enough! Being able to spend time away from your phone and the online world is crucial, letting yourself look up at the world can allow you to appreciate where you are physically and mentally in that current point in your life. This can allow you to think about what you want to do and how you really want to spend your time.
Do an activity you love: Whether it's a sport or something crafty or neither, it could be an old skill or something new you want to learn, either way you need to let yourself learn to do things that simply you enjoy. Doing an activity you love can lead to a new way in which you live your life, you will learn to start doing more things for yourself and not just following what other people enjoy.