I started putting my needs first last year with giving myself my 30 minutes at the gym. It has grown from there. This whole blog is about how doing so has pulled me out of depression and given me a life back. So, if you want to know why I think this is important, read anything on this blog!
I went looking for other voices, therefore, for you. I found the following content to be high-quality. I’ve summarized each, but recommend you follow the links to read more.
Theresa Ho wrote an amazing “Ultimate Self-Care Guide” on her blog, https://happyfreelifestyle.com/personal-growth/putyourselffirst/. She covers:
- Why we don’t care of our own needs, noting “[a]dmit it. You are proud of how much you do for others.” This momma is guilty of that!
- What is self-care?
- Its benefits.
- Is it selfish?
- How to take care of oneself.
- How to handle others’ angry reactions. I could have used this advice a year ago.
6 Times It’s Not Selfish to Put Your Needs First
- “You’re sick”
- “You’re hangry”
- “You’re totally exhausted”
- “You’re under pressure at work”
- “You feel like you’re being taken advantage of”
- “You’ve made a commitment to yourself”
In this article, https://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/redefining-selfish-why-you-should-put-yourself-first-0804144 , Rena Pollak, LMFT, encourages readers to recognize that putting yourself first is “integral to human safety,” and thus, ditch the guilt and shame. She poignantly asks if we are afraid that taking care of ourselves is selfish, “then who is supposed to take of us?”
Lisa Firestone, Ph.D., gives 8 reasons to engage in self-care in this Psychology Today article. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/compassion-matters/201708/the-unselfish-art-prioritizing-yourself
- “When we feel depleted we have nothing to give.”
- “Doing what we love recharges us.”
- “We lose our real self to the ‘do, do, do’ mentality.”
- “We can drain others when we don’t get our needs met.”
- “We lose ourselves to our ‘critical inner voice.’”
- “We fail to practice self-compassion.”
- “Our stress hurts us and those close to us.”
- “Driving ourselves can impair our performance.”
In an article on chopra.com, Michelle Fondin advises to “[r]ecognize your need and take care of yourself first. No one else is responsible for your needs.” https://chopra.com/articles/setting-boundaries-how-to-put-your-needs-first
7 Reasons putting yourself first is not selfish at all
- “If you don’t fill your gas tank, you can’t carry passengers.”
- “Nobody else is going to save you.”
- “Nobody can change the world, but every person can change themselves.”
- “Putting yourself first is not the same thing as disregarding everybody else’s needs.”
- “You have to take care of yourself eventually.”
- “The more you put yourself first, the more you’re about to honestly, genuinely, completely serve others.”
- “If you learn to love yourself, you’ll know how to actually love other people.”
4 Ways to put yourself first
- “Make a list of priorities. Keep it short.”
- “Ask for help from your family and your community.”
- “Keep a balance between treating yourself and giving to others.”
- “Remember putting yourself first sometimes involves doing things that are difficult, but benefit you in the long run.”
“Selfish is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.” – Oscar Wilde