Sometimes taking good care of yourself means getting… well… selfish about it.
It’s counter-intuitive, we’re taught all our lives that being selfish is wrong, we should think of others’ and their needs first, right? While we don’t disagree that looking out for others is the right thing to do, we would like to propose that if we put others’ needs first all the time, it ends up crashing the party for everyone.
That’s why we’d like to make the case for selfish self-care.
Here’s the best part though- boosting our health in ways we think are selfish can help others in ways we don’t expect…
1. C’mon Get Happy…
Have you ever sat down and really thought about the things that make you happy? Get a piece of paper and write the first things that come to mind when you think about what makes you happy.
Now take a moment to consider this: do any of these things make you happy at someone else’s expense?
We don’t mean at someone else’s expense because they’d prefer that you do something else, we mean at the expense of someone else’s well-being.
If the answer is yes, cross that one off your list. Chances are, though, most if not all of them are not like that at all. After you’ve determined you’re not hurting anyone by doing the things that make you happy, DO THOSE THINGS.
Why? Because studies conducted by researchers from the Harvard School of Medicine point to the fact that happiness is, in fact, contagious, so get out there and infect some people with happy.
2. Treat Yo’ Self
If you’re a Parks and Recreation fan, you may remember the episode where Donna and Tom drag a poor, reluctant Ben to the mall for “treat yo’ self day”.
Don’t know what we’re talking about? Observe:
Luckily, by the end of the episode, Ben catches on and an emotional catharsis unfolds when he realizes he never buys himself anything because he feels bad about treating himself.
After a teary breakdown, Ben feels much better, equipped with the freedom of knowing that it’s OK to buy something for himself every once in a while just because he wants it. What did he treat himself with? A straight-up movie-worthy Batman costume.
See? If it wasn’t for Donna and Tom’s selfish philosophy on treating yo’ self, Ben would’ve never learned how awesome he’d look in that Batman suit.
Learn from the gang at Parks and Rec. If you can afford it, treat yo’ self. Guilt-free.
3. Don’t Be Afraid To Sing Your Own Praises
Recognizing your own talents without being conceited is an art. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having the confidence to express your pride in a job well done, especially if you express that pride in front of others, because guess what? Confidence is contagious too.
Researchers in the Department of Neuroscience at Regis University published a paper about how our self-confidence boosts the self-confidence of others thanks to mirror neurons and how they affect our behaviors.
So the next time you make a really killer batch of spaghetti and meatballs, or you beat your best time when swimming laps at the pool, just say so. There’s nothing wrong with patting yourself on the back for a job well done.
4. Try Something New Because It’ll Make You Cooler
As Lenny Bruce once said, “There’s nothing sadder than an aging hipster.”
So we take up hobbies that are “practical” like home improvement projects or learning to knit sweaters. Those are worthy inclusions in your list of hobbies, for sure, but are they really… cool? Or even, dare we say… sexy?
Well, we say Lenny was just jealous because he wasn’t cool. Take up that hobby you’ve always wanted to but was afraid that you’re “too old” for it.
Skateboarding? Maaaybe… as long as you don’t kill yourself.
Do you yearn to be dripping with the self-confidence only a goddess like Serena Williams possesses? Take up tennis and set out to KICK BUTT. If you’re not that great, whatever. You’ll still feel like a badass swingin’ that powerful backhand.
Spoken word poetry? Yes! If you’ve got something to say that you think is impactful, do it! Go forth, make art!
When COVID finally leaves us alone, go to cool art exhibitions, check out local shows, engage in some avant-garde theater, whatever feeds your soul and makes your inner hipster happy.
If none of these are your cup of tea, go in search of that thing that is. Find what makes you feel cool. It’s out there.
We’re all about healthy living at newportcenterorthopedic, so when we found out how good a little selfishness every now and then can be for your health, we couldn’t wait to share it with you.