Why Self-Care Isn’t Selfish

If you’ve been slacking on self-care because you think it’s selfish to focus on yourself, it’s time to shake off that notion. Let’s clear up why self-care is one of the least selfish things you can do.

Wendy Miller

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Chronic stress physically drains you. Beyond that, it also impairs your judgment and productivity. You’re raising children, caring for a home, running a business or trying to advance a career, and trying to find time for romance and friends, too. You’re critical to all of these things.

If you’re sick, if you’re not functioning, then everything else is suffering.

Let’s consider why self-care might be the least selfish thing you can do for yourself and those around you.

Photo by Allie Smith on Unsplash

Self-care lets you recharge

Women are often taught from a very young age to put others ahead of themselves. Whether it’s our parents, our first boyfriend, or even the teacher who insists their homework is more important than all the other teachers, someone (often multiple someones) teaches you that others come first.

Sometimes those others do come first. A small child who can’t fend for themselves may need you to change their diaper, feed them, or keep them safe. But your spouse can cook a meal themselves. Your clients can wait until the start of business in the morning or on Monday.

Self-care is putting yourself first so that you can offer the best of yourself to others. Think about what they tell you on a plane: put on your own oxygen mask before you help others. This is because if you don’t put on your own, you might pass out before you can help someone else.

Self-care is no different. It’s taking care of yourself so you don’t collapse before you can help someone else.

Photo by Anthony Tran on Unsplash

Self-care creates authenticity

We all have things we do because of others. It might be that we’ve modeled ourselves after that other, or perhaps the other person has convinced us we…

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