By: Tea Kingley
Do you ever find yourself getting caught up trying to make everyone else happy to the point where you forget to do so for yourself? This is a common pattern amongst caring, empathetic people, but it’s important to remember that you need to put yourself first — not in a selfish way, but in a way that takes care of you. Self care isn’t selfish! You can’t continue helping others if you are not happy and healthy yourself, so here are three tips to learn how to make yourself a priority.
Set Your Own Boundaries, Regardless of How Toxic People React.
Toxic people will always be toxic, and you can’t fix them no matter how hard you try. In order to stop letting them drain your energy, which they so often do, you need to set your own boundaries in dealing with them. Whether this is a family member, friend, significant other, or beyond, one major step one can take to stay safe around toxic people is to lay down the law as to what is acceptable and what is not, and if they won’t respect that take the space you need to get away from their disrespect. Stop tiptoeing around toxic people, worrying how they will react to every little thing, and start living for yourself!
Separate Your Happiness From That of Your Parents
Often, it can feel as if we are living for our parents, whether it’s pushing ourselves past our limits to meet their expectations or letting their worries of what people will think about us drive our decisions. Once you realize that your parents are their own people with their own traumas and they realize the same about you, you can free yourself from this constant pressure and prioritize your own happiness rather than that of others. The job of a parent is hard: they have to support you unconditionally for so much of your life, but then they must let go and let you be your own person and make your own mistakes. No matter how hard this process of letting go is, it is an integral part of the growth and well-being of everyone involved.
Treat Yourself How You Want to be Treated
If you treat yourself poorly, those around you will take that as permission to treat you poorly too. By treating yourself the way you want to be treated, you are taking a major step in improving your life from all sides. You’ll become more in tune with what makes your heart sing, and if something doesn’t make you happy you’ll realize you can, most of the time, just stop doing it. You can’t please everyone, but the most important person to please will always be yourself. Ask yourself: who are you living for? When will you matter? If the answer isn’t yourself and NOW, take inventory of your life and re-evaluate if you’re making healthy choices. Live for YOU, not anyone else.