As strange as it seems, being a little more selfish could allow you to be more efficiently selfless. This is undoubtedly a complex phenomenon, but how many people dedicate so much energy and time to helping others that they don’t find the time to care for themselves. While they manage to get away with this for a certain period of time, doing this will take its toll on the long run. Everyone needs rest and satisfaction to function properly, let alone to help others. Check out the insights below to see how you and the people around you can benefit from a more selfish perspective.
1. A little selfishness enhances your health
According to Bob Rosen, author of Grounded: How Leaders Stay Rooted in an Uncertain World , “When you take care of yourself first, you show up as a healthy, grounded person in life.” After interviewing numerous executives, it was shown that strong physical health was common among most strong leaders: “Instead of spending all of their time at work, these men and women carve out time for themselves. For example, Dennis Nally is global chairman of PwC, and he travels more than any other person I know. Exercises all the time, and eats well. He knows in order to sustain his travel agenda he has to take the time to take care of himself.”
2. Selfish people get promoted more
It has been scientifically shown that selfish people are strong leaders and more likely to be a supervisor, manager, or owner. “Selfish people are more confident and less likely to give up on goals. They go after what they want unapologetically, and they’re not afraid to ask for the raise or promotion. . . . Selfish people have a drive to succeed. There is often a higher purpose to be a great leader–taking care of other people. But if you can’t take care of yourself, you can’t care for others. Being selfish is critical.” It seems like the lack of selfishness negatively affects more people than only the person in question.
3. Selfishness results in better relationships
According to Melissa Deuter, clinical assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, “Selfish is an ugly word but it can mean two different things. One connotation is that you’re unkind and inconsiderate of others. The other is that you take responsibility for getting your personal, emotional and physical needs met, and that’s an important part of becoming an adult. Setting boundaries means knowing where you end and other person begins. If you have trouble being self-focused, you might have trouble saying no.”
Rosen says that being selfish is the key to being a healthy and grounded person. If you are looking for a partner to fill your emotional needs, the relationship is vulnerable. The best relationships are the ones when two adults enjoy each other. If you take into account the time and energy many couples spend doing things “just because,” it becomes clear that both partners could benefit from doing more for themselves.
4. A little selfishness will make you a lot happier
When you make things that bring you peace and joy, you become happier. Simple as that! As per Deuter, “If you have a well-developed sense of who you are, what you enjoy and the ability to communicate this to others, you’ll be a happier person. Putting yourself first is not a negative quality; it’s your job to take care of yourself and get what you need.”
As can be concluded, to live in a way that brings the most happiness and success, it is crucial to dedicate enough time and energy to spending time alone. Once you embrace yourself, with all the advantages and flaws, you can efficiently focus your actions to ensure they are more effective for both you and the people you interact with.