You cannot help the world if you don’t help yourself.
Pathwalking is about seeking out your own destiny. Walking your own path in life. Pathwalking is about living life to the fullest, striving for the best experiences.
It can be very hard not to feel that this idea is selfish. It is even more difficult when you see the state of the world today. The constant deluge of information, specifically negativity, greed, and selfishness, can be disconcerting.
I try not to get political in Pathwalking, but I feel the need presently. The so-called “Health Care” bill the US Senate has proposed is beyond horrific. It’s the ultimate in selfish, greedy, surreal cruelty. The ACA may be imperfect, but this “replacement” is nothing short of inhuman. If this legislation passes, millions will needlessly suffer.
Why is this? Because these people in power care for nobody but themselves. I’m sorry if you find this generalization offensive, but that’s how I see this.
How come I am taking this unusual approach? Because when we are inundated by news of unbelievable egotism, greed and indecency, it’s hard to see the line between self-care and selfishness.
Self-help is not selfish.
Doing things to take care of yourself is not selfish. When we don’t put ourselves first, we leave ourselves with little, if anything, to give to anyone or anything else.
I understand this feeling all-too-well. Knowing that we need to resist, to protest, to speak out against this ugliness, it feel like the self shouldn’t be a priority. It’s even tougher when we have jobs and maybe employer health insurance and possibly even good health not to feel like we need to give more. We have good things, shouldn’t we accept it as sufficient and keep giving more?
The simple answer is no. If we are not completely satisfied with our own paths and self-care, we need to continue striving to help ourselves. This works directly with the Law of Attraction, and conscious reality creation. The more we have, the more we have to give.
I believe that it’s easy to tell the difference between self-care and selfishness. How? How it feels.
Self-Care is Abundance. Selfishness is Lack.
When we take the time to live the best life we can, to be happy with who we are and what we do, we feel abundant. We feel good, we feel positive, and when we feel that way we want to share. That is what helping yourself with self-care feels like. You want to give because you have more than enough.
This is not just about tangibles like time and money. This is also about intangibles like friendship, love and support. I share this blog because I don’t just want to find my own paths, I want to help you do the same. If I help you in any way, I feel good about doing that.
Selfishness hoards your time, your money, your energy. Being selfish means you feel like there is not enough. You don’t want to share because you are afraid things will become depleted if you do. Selfishness comes from fear, entitlement, and a feeling of insufficiency, among other places. Selfish feels lacking, and cares for nobody else.
The ability to help others comes from abundance.
Plain and simple, you help because you have more than enough to do so. Even if you do not have everything you need, or even want, you still feel abundant. From that place of abundance you have the strength to give, to lend that helping hand. That is why self-care matters. You have to have enough for yourself to give.
If you are driving your car from one end of the country to the other, along the way you will need to fill the tank. You can only go so far before your fuel is depleted. This is completely true of the self, too. When you don’t care enough for yourself, you deplete what you have, and won’t be able to give easily or joyfully to others.
Which leads to an important distinction. Sacrifice. Sacrifice is a lack mentality. Why? Because sacrificing says, “Since there is not enough, I will go without.” If you deny your own good to do good for others, you will do less good than you desire. If in the process of helping someone else achieve something you do not, that can build resentment. Resentment in turn can lead to selfishness, because due to feeling lacking and previous sacrifice, now you feel a need to take for yourself and share nothing. Hence, perpetuating lack mentality.
Compromise is not sacrifice.
Another important distinction needs to be made here. Compromising means you accept certain conditions that may not be exactly what you want. Yet, this is not due to feeling lack, but rather to satisfy some other condition. For example, let’s say you and a partner agreed to sell something you jointly own. You think the proceeds should be split 50/50, your partner believes they should get 70% of the profit. You point out why the proceeds should be split evenly, your partner concedes only a little bit, but still believes they should get 65%.
Maybe you are right that things should be split evenly, and while you could argue and drag out matters, to keep the peace you decide to compromise, and accept. You choose compromise because keeping the peace and being happy matters more than being right. It might stick in your craw some, but in the end your choice will keep everyone happier. This is also a matter of self-care, and something to consider when walking your chosen paths.
You cannot help the world if you don’t help yourself. Self-care is not selfish, and allows you to have even more to give. What matters of self-care have you done lately?
This is the two-hundred eighty-seventh entry in my series. These weekly posts are ideas for and my personal experiences with walking along the path of life. I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way.
Thank you for joining me. Feel free to re-blog and share.
The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.
If you enjoy Pathwalking, you may also want to read my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.