Being Selfish Helped me Find Inner Peace
Featured on The Essential Life
When I used to hear the word selfish I immediately connected it to negative connotations. In my mind, it was someone who only cared about themselves & would have complete disregard for the needs of others. However, as I battled through a year of hardship last year, I learnt that being selfish isn't such a bad thing after all. Sometimes it's the only way to fight a battle you didn't even know that you needed to fight.
I battled through neglecting myself & my needs, putting others first & I suppressed my emotions to a point where it was just too much. I was working my body in high intensity training numerous times a week, & pushing it too far even in times of weakness or fatigue just to be in control of something in what seemed like a life that was crumbling, piece by piece.
It was at this point my mind gave way. Like a maze, I could never get to the end, but just kept circling around the inner workings, seeing everything through a hazy fog. I knew this was my breaking point. It had crept up on me slowly & now that it was here, I was so under prepared & so overwhelmed.
I had heard people toss around phrases like 'look after yourself' & 'put yourself first.' But doing those things when you have continuously put others before you was really foreign to me. I had to teach myself to love me again. I had to teach myself to become my own best friend. I had to teach myself that whatever I was accomplishing was ok & enough at the time. I had to teach myself these thugs things in order to grow.
I became selfish. I had to. I would say no. I would work out if I felt like it. I would do things alone & enjoy them. I would see and talk to the people I wanted. People who made me feel positive. I would take time off work, much to the guilt I initially felt in making the decision. Now I know that it was the best choice I ever made. I would travel to my favourite place, Europe, solo, where I would continue to grow in loving myself & doing the things I wanted to do. For me.
During this time of Self Love, I began documenting my memories, thoughts & experiences in the form of poetry or prose. This helped me put my emotions into words & let my wall of vulnerability begin to break down. I began posting these poems to Instagram, where I soon gathered 1000 followers. I was in disbelief. I soon realised that I am not the only one feeling the way I am. That realisation was so comforting. I did learn, however, I am one of the ones who is actually putting strategies in place to escape this negative mindset unlike many others I have encountered. I decided I wanted to support others in their journey too & persisted with the forum, planning to publish a book to continue to mentor those in need.
A lot of people out there my age have no idea where they're going. I was one of them. This time of being selfish allowed me to really consider the people, the dreams & the values important to me. It taught me that I don't need to be perfect in order to be loved. It taught me I need to fail in order to succeed. It taught me I need to love in order to be reborn. It taught me I need to cry in order to let go. The best thing you can do for you every now & then is let yourself grow through being selfish & making time for you. Just like a flower bud opening in the spring, you will blossom.
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