Secrets to Caring More For Others

Eda LeShan wrote that, “When we truly care for ourselves, it becomes possible to care far more profoundly about other people.” Were you taught that equation? Were you raised to take very good care of yourself? Were you taught to ask for what you need and want?

When I was a child, youth and young adult, the adults gave me the impression that being thought of as selfish was almost the worst thing that could be said about me! The message was clear–do not be selfish, do not ever even appear to be selfish. Perhaps this happened to you, too.

On reflection, this was an almost crippling blow to self-esteem. As far as I can remember there was no boundary created to indicate where self-esteem ended and selfishness began. To be safe, I was carefully schooled to consider that to ask for anything I wanted or needed was an indicator of selfishness. It was also considered rank selfishness to speak well of oneself, too. If this was true in your upbringing, I encourage you to think differently now. Celebrate your strengths, talents, skills and accomplishments. It is not conceit to know the good about yourself, however, it is arrogance to suggest that others are inferior. Big difference, of course.

For those of us raised in this way, taking good care of ourselves is equated with selfishness at a deep level, and, so, we often neglect ourselves in ways that would enhance our self-esteem. We deserve to take good care of ourselves….we deserve to be taken good care of, too!

Back when we still all used cassette tapes, I recorded an audio called Be Positively Selfish–The Pathway to Generosity* which suggests a new way of thinking about ourselves, and our need to take good care of ourselves. A radical idea to some, I’m sure, however, excellent self-care is essential so that we have the gift of caring to give to others. Remember, you cannot give a gift you do not have.

Here’s an early recording from Dr. Shaler on this topic titled, Be Positively Selfish

For today, find three small ways to take good care of yourself, and DO IT! Do things that make you feel good, and feel good about yourself. Then you will have that gift to give.

What folks have said…
I love you Rhoberta Shaler; you have given me such power, inner strength, wisdom and invaluable insights. Thank you!
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