I know I’m not the only one who finds this hard. How many of us just do things because we know it’ll make others happy? Even if it doesn’t make us happy? Even if it actually makes us anxious/stressed? I bet it’s the majority. Because we’re not selfish right?! But I need to tell you something…it’s ok to be selfish. It’s totally ok to put yourself first sometimes and do what you want. Because at the end of the day, it’s your life! And if you’re constantly doing things to please others, when are you doing the things YOU want to do? When are you feeling fulfilled/relaxed/at peace?
This was actually a news year’s resolution for 2019. One I’ve definitely tried to keep up. Ok, sometimes it slips. And I go back to doing something just because I think I should. But I do at least stop to think now. Is that really what I want?
It all started with an event I wasn’t comfortable attending. Ok, it was quite a big event. But I knew that the whole day I’d have been really uncomfortable, surrounded by my ex’s friends and really not happy. It was a HUGE step putting myself first in this instance. And of course, at first I felt absolutely awful. I felt like I was letting people down. I knew it’d mean the end to a friendship too – which is always hard. But these things happen. Life happens. People drift. And if they’re really friends, they’d understand your actions and support you and what you want too.
There have been other occasions too. I’ve been more forward about what I want. Whether that’s related to money and what I budgeted to spend – not going over because someone else wants me to take more. Or whether it’s something I had planned in like a run/exercise, making sure I stick to going even if the other person can’t anymore, because that’s what I wanted to do. I’ve gone home early from work drinks too – because I wanted to be home with Chris/pack/get stuff done. That’s always a tricky one, because I don’t want to be the boring one, but ultimately, I know I need to think about the balance.
I’ve started learning that there’s a line. Yes, we should make sure we’re the best friends/colleagues we can be. Support other friends/partners/family and be there as much as possible. But not if it’s making us truly unhappy or anxious. There should be a balance between supporting them, and them understanding that you’re going to do what you want to do too. You’d understand if they didn’t want to do something, just because. So why can’t you decide you don’t want to?
It also plays a big part in finding the balance in life too. Knowing to put what you want first so your diary doesn’t become overcrowded with things you don’t necessarily want to do. It’ll make such a difference.
I’m still learning. I think it definitely takes time to develop. And obviously it’s different when it comes to this one… as you do tend to put your other half first in a lot of occasions…
But we all totally have this. Remember, they will understand.
Do you struggle to put yourself first and say no sometimes too?