Putting Your Well-being First: Acceptable Or Selfish?

Wellness

In a world of kindness and humor, there's also a world of pain and sadness. These emotions come and go like waves, and it can be exhausting having to go between the two extremes all the time. Especially if your intent is purely for the purpose of the needs and emotions of others.

Having to hide any drop of negativity from the world like a facade is a draining endless cycle that can slowly deteriorate the genuine positive emotions. Eventually, you lose the importance of looking after yourself and you begin to doubt aspects you never once questioned in your life before.

This is why it’s always okay to put yourself and your needs first.

You Aren’t Selfish

The stigma of putting yourself and your needs before anyone else being labeled as selfish is a complete hoax. You are never selfish for making sure that you are okay and that your needs, goals, and standards are put first. The only person who can put those things in check is you, nobody else can control your emotions and thoughts. While many may say that this answer is wrong, the most important person in your life is and always will be you.

Nobody else is living your life and nobody else apart from you will know what you need. Selfishness is defined as having a lack of consideration for other people. I also believe that that definition includes having a lack of consideration for yourself. Constantly having consideration for others while neglecting yourself and your well-being.

The Tiresome Cycle

Day in and day out, you may be a person who is always putting something ahead of your own needs. For some people, this might be work, school, relationships, or friendships, and while all these aspects of life are important; so are you.

Putting in hours and hours of work that puts a strain on your well-being, or forcing yourself to put a smile on and help others' needs before your own puts you in this constant cycle. A cycle that can be hard to break away from especially if you feel like if you do end up breaking this cycle, you fear the consequences and judgment of others.

Being a part of this ongoing loop will only be setting yourself up for self-destruction. In time, you may reach a certain breaking point which can lead to severe mental health damage.

How Do We Step Out of It?

Realizing that you don’t need to have others' approval and that your well-being comes first, always, is the first step in breaking the cycle. At the end of the day, you're your own worst critic, so stepping away from any toxicity and bad habits that make you feel any less worthy are a step in the right direction. You are completely in control of your life and if you feel like you’ve been in the backseat, it’s time you swap back to the driver's side. Take a moment to figure out why you’ve gone to the backseat and how you're going to get back and step on the gas.

Evaluate where you're at and why you feel like you need to be putting yourself first again. Once you’ve pinpointed exactly the core ‘why’ and ‘how,’ you can begin to make changes.

Blocking It Out

Stop looking for approval on social media and counting how many likes you get. Stop comparing yourself to photoshopped influencers, and feeling the guilt rising in your stomach when you realize you haven’t worked out today.

When will loving yourself be enough? Having all these insecurities right at our fingertips every day can be unhealthy. It goes without saying that you need to feed your brain with positive and healthy affirmations, and with our generation completely infatuated with social media, it only makes sense to cleanse our feeds.

Don’t be afraid to cut off any communication with negative people for a while either. It can be refreshing to not constantly be feeding into other people's drama and adding fuel to their fire. Allowing yourself to set free and cutting off any toxic and or draining relationships is completely acceptable. No matter what anybody will tell you if it’s putting a strain on your well-being then you are allowed to have a say in whom you choose to spend your time with.

Switching Up and Focusing on You

You’ve nailed down the how and why you're feeling like this, and you’ve blocked off any accessible negativity, now what? It’s time to make new habits and do things for you, not for anybody else.

Do something you’ve always wanted to do, dye your hair a completely different color, or go to a concert you’ve been wanting to go to. Take yourself out to get lunch or go for a run—do things that make you feel good and happy. Divulge into self-care and spend a little extra on a new face mask or makeup product. Look after yourself mentally, start a journal, or begin making daily gratitude lists. Refuel your mind by doing yoga or watching the sunrise at your local beach. Doing these little things more often than you would usually add up in making a happier, more fulfilled version of you.

Looking after your wellbeing has never been so important, especially in times like today where the world is a whirlwind, and every day there becomes new challenges we have to face. Life is too short to accept anything less than the best for yourself. Learning to take charge, and love yourself and the life you wake up to every day is something every person needs to do.

You are and always will be in control of the choices and emotions you project. Allowing yourself time to put yourself first so that you can attract more positive emotions and experiences is one small sacrifice you have to make for yourself.

Mia Bennett
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Mia Bennett is a high school student in Auckland, New Zealand. Striving to work as a Journalist in her life she is passionate about beauty, fashion, wellness and keeping up with the latest celebrity news.