Allowing yourself to be more selfish with your wants and needs can seem, well… selfish. The idea of selfishness often comes with negative connotations and shame, with it too often being used as an insult. What if we told you that being more selfish is a good thing, and will benefit everyone around you in the long run? If you are feeling a bit down it might be because you aren’t putting your mental state first, which can have a negative knock on effect to the people around you. Putting your desires and needs as a priority is the key to living a happier life for yourself, and for others. So if you’re convinced, read on for Scentered's top tips on how to be more selfish and start living for yourself!
Recognise that you need to be more selfish
The first step in learning to be more selfish is recognising that you don’t give enough time and thought to yourself. With so many other people around us it is too easy to get caught up in thinking about their needs and what you can do to meet them. Especially if you are a parent, it is even easier to put yourself as a last priority, with kids always coming first. Whilst this is a natural feeling, you can’t forget that you are allowed to have needs too. So starting from today, recognise that you are just as important and how you feel matters too. Ensuring you have a positive mental state will only bring positivity to everyone around you. In the long run you will be happier, more productive and more present.
Assess your wants and needs
Next, assess your wants and desires. It has probably been far too long since you’ve asked yourself ‘what do I want to do with my day?’, ‘what will make me the happiest?’. Days off, by default, can be dedicated to running errands, finding something to do that the kids will enjoy or doing something to meet someone else needs. Whilst looking out for others is important, this can end up having a detrimental effect on our mental health. So next time you get the chance, what would you want to do that will make you the happiest?
Put it in your diary
Now it’s time to clear some time and space for you to be selfish. Maybe it’s when your kids are at school, your partner is at work and you have booked the day off for yourself or your next weekend off. Your time to yourself could even just be an hour in the evening. Putting your ‘selfish’ time into your diary will allow you to make preparations, like booking a babysitter. This will allow you to put your mind at ease knowing that everything else is taken care of, leaving your brain free to think about you.
Ask yourself what will make you happiest
Now for the fun bit, ask yourself how you can fulfil your wants and needs. Whether it is just a day at home binge watching your favourite show that you always seem to miss, or spoiling yourself and booking in for a day at the spa. Maybe it's just running yourself a hot bath, filling the room with Scentered Candles and flipping through glossy magazines as you unwind. Whatever it may be, be authentic to yourself and do what will make you happiest, not what will be the quickest or most convenient for others.
Don't ask permission!
The essence in being selfish is doing something purely for yourself. So to this end, don't ask permission to put yourself first occasionally. Do it for yourself, do it because you know it’s what you need and deserve, and do it without asking someone else if it’s okay.
Don’t feel guilty
But most importantly, don't feel guilty about it. Mum guilt is a real thing! Even if you are at your spa day, or you’re on a weekend getaway with friends, don’t let yourself feel guilty for being there or enjoying something by yourself. Just know that when you return home, you will be more refreshed than ever and in an even more positive mental state, which will only benefit everyone else.
Do it all over again... Being selfish isn’t a one-time golden ticket event. Make this a regular thing. After all, practice makes perfect.