Blog 26: Is it really a dirty word?

Posted on Apr 7, 2013

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3 days ago my lovely friend and PR Guru Bec sent me another piece of press we’d received unexpectedly. I was so excited as it was in a well known health and wellbeing magazine… and then I read it.

I was one of the experts listed …

an expert on …

BEING SELFISH

Right.

My first reaction was to laugh as really it is pretty funny and I do advocate women needing to put themselves first more in life, especially being the owner and founder of a business dedicated to women finding their bliss and doing something wonderful for themselves.

And then I remembered an old friends words at the start of the demise of our friendship, telling me after I had taken a holiday for myself at a time when I was hugely stressed out, that she thought I was selfish and lived a selfish life as ‘not everyone can run away to a tropical island when things are getting tough’.

To be honest this didn’t really upset me.
I knew it’s what she was feeling as a mother of 3, having just overcome a huge illness and then giving birth to twins … and a hugely different life to me where she had very few personal freedoms.

I understood.
I said my piece.
We drifted further and further apart.
And now sadly, she is somebody that I used to know.

I remember thinking at the time… ‘well if my best friend in the world thinks I am selfish when I am always the one visiting her, spending every 2nd Saturday night at her house with her kids and husband, buying presents for her family for Birthdays, Xmas, Easter, going to all their celebrations … and she had visited my house once in 12 months.

‘Then why the bloody hell am I not being selfish!’

I think this is where the ‘selfish’ advocate was born.

I moved to Bali.
I started an amazing business allowing other women to run away to a tropical Island by themselves to put themselves first for just a week … which is essentially … selfish.

And I have never worked so hard in my life! Lol

So much for trying to move away to do something just for me. Hahahaha

And still I come back to being the advocate of selfishness.

No matter how it is written, said, advocated, shouted from the roof tops … it still sounds like a dirty word. Like a back handed compliment or a passive aggressive statement.

Selfish.

To put oneself first.

My absolute intuition and consciousness tells me this is absolutely as it needs to be and we need to put ourselves before others in order to be able to be the best we can and honor this journey in the human body.

But somehow it still seems so … DIRTY!

I’m not a mum and I see how much work my friends do for their kids.
For some of my friends it seems like they’ve lost themselves completely in being a mother. Others have found balance and love and it is everything they ever wanted in life. Others are just plain struggling.

It seems so right for mums to put their kids first.

So in this case, being selfish would be a bad thing right?

I’ve come to realize that I’m not all that comfortable being an advocate of selfishness.

It seems to fly in the face of everything I believe in and do.
I’m actually not very good at it.

Recently coping with a chronic illness where I literally don’t have the energy to go and visit people at their homes, socialize, have a drink and do all the social things Ive always done … I’ve been forced to be selfish.

I have had to ask all my friends and family to come and visit me because I literally don’t have the energy to visit them. The constant pain drains it all out of me.

I’ve set up an apartment overlooking the ocean as I need to feel comfortable not leaving the apartment for days when I have migraines, chronic fatigue and ridiculous amounts of pain. Yet I have a mind that is screaming for me to get out and ‘do something’. I need to be able to see the calming ocean and I know that is a huge expensive privilege.

But I have done that for myself. I have been selfish.

I still haven’t had a day off working in over 2 years.
I still answer emails and write fb posts and put bookings in when my head is throbbing so hard I can hardly see the words on the page.

But if I didn’t have that I think I would go completely crazy.

I need to have a purpose and there is only purpose in helping others … so how can I really be considered an expert on selfishness?

Today after sending out an invitation to different friends (some of whom I haven’t seen for over 12 months as I’ve been away) to join me for a Bday lunch in a couple of weeks… I received some replies that they had other things to do like a kids bday party and a BBQ that hadn’t been finalized just yet. I’d stated no kids as we literally don’t have room at the table for 20 people + another 20 kids.

I felt so deflated.
Do I really have to point out that I am important and I need their love at this time? Shouldn’t my friends just know this and want to make an effort when I rarely get to see them and I have always been the one to make so much effort?

I started to get really down as the hours ticked by almost into a depressive slump.

And then after not being able to sleep I switched on facebook and read this…

Your biggest job here on Earth is to love yourself and to learn to love yourself. And that won’t always be easy.
Sometimes that will be very, very challenging.
But many times, that journey will be very, very wonderful.
And with that goal as your focus, everything else will fall into place.
Greater opening, greater compassion, greater passion
Greater desire to be here, the desire to be
When you learn to nurture and love yourself as you would another
When you give yourself that attention, things change very fast, things move in you. ~~Lee, from You Are Love and Energy Speaks

And so it seems that despite…
* having an unrecognizable body always in pain
* becoming socially stagnant unable to nurture friendships the way I would like
* moving away from loved ones to follow my own dreams
* spending most of my time alone
* not having a loving, nurturing relationship with a man
* not being able to do hardly any of the things I used to find exhilarating and healthy
* and basically asking myself what is the point of all this, way too many times to be healthy

Despite all that, I am meant to LOVE MYSELF … which would essentially be quite selfish!

Stating my needs without emotional blackmail is healthy.
Not being everything everyone else wants me to be is healthy.
Taking time out to focus on my health is necessary.
Creating a business that I love that gives back in a huge way, rather than having kids is ok.

So yes, it is ok to be selfish.

And when I am struggling with this it is so nice to have so many reminders pop up within a few days in all different ways. Such as this…

So thankyou for the opportunity to be an advocate of selfishness.
What a privilege.

Zx

 

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