Selfishness is not what you think it is.

This can be particularly challenging, because a great deal of the way in which we perceive our universe attributes much to selfishness. And while there are certainly some tremendously selfish people out there, much of what people see as selfish is not.

I want to begin with a broad definition of what selfishness is NOT.

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Selfishness is not taking time self-care. It is not making choices and decisions to better your own life. You are not selfish if you desire to work a good job, have a good career, relationship, friendship, and so on. It is not selfish to say no when you have nothing to give.

Because we are so oversold on the idea that there is lack and scarcity rather than abundance in our world, we have come to believe that having things we desire denies them from others. If I have food, they do not have food. When I have wealth, they do not have wealth. Why? Because I am keeping it from them.

THAT IS A LIE. Unless you are deliberately withholding from others, or doing anything to interfere with them and their efforts, you keep nothing from anyone.

We live in an abundant universe. There is more than enough of virtually everything you can imagine for everyone. Tangible or intangible, there is more than enough.

As such, when you have that which you desire in your life, it is not selfish. Everyone can be empowered to consciously create their reality. The lack and scarcity we are sold is a lie.

Selfishness is a matter of denying good for others

Let me illustrate selfishness in the same manner I used in a recent podcast. Let’s say there’s a pie. You can go ahead and take a slice, because the pie is there to be consumed, and you have been invited to take a slice. There is nothing selfish about this.

Let’s say there’s a pie, but rather than take a slice, you take the whole damned thing for yourself. You don’t share the pie. THAT is selfishness. When you take and hoard and deny an equal opportunity for others, that is what selfishness is.

Self-care allows us to reset, to reclaim energy for ourselves, in order for us to have more to give. When you make choices and decisions in order to better your own life, it is not selfish, unless you block another from making choices and decisions. Just because you have a good job, career, relationship or what-have-you, unless you are acting to prevent another from the same, you are not selfish.

Can you see how it is only by a willful act that you can be selfish? When the corporate CEO takes a billion dollar bonus off the sweat of his or her employees, but refuses to pay a living wage to them, that’s selfish. When you work hard and earn a million dollars through your hard work, that is NOT selfish. The difference is being a giver versus a taker.

We all know people who give of themselves. They give time, money, encouragement, energy and more to other people.

We also all know people who take for themselves. They take time, money, encouragement, energy and more from other people. Givers versus takers. Givers empower, and are not selfish in their actions. Takers disempower, and are the epitome of selfishness.

Giving versus sacrificing

One important note I need to add here. Sacrifice is not selfless, and can develop into some unhealthy things.

You can’t drive a car anywhere on an empty tank of gas. You cannot give to others when you have no fuel for yourself, either.

Many believe that it is noble and good to sacrifice. The thing is, sacrifice is the acceptance of lack and scarcity. There is not enough, so I will go without. The universe is abundant, and it is selfless to give of ourselves from a place of abundance. Sacrifice comes from a place of lack, and denying ourselves can and usually will lead to resentment.

It is not so hard, after enough sacrifice, to become entitled, and entitlement can lead to withholding from others, which is ultimately selfish.

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Self-care is not selfishness

Because we get sold an overblown idea of the nature of selfishness, we tend to think of others before we think of ourselves.

I am not saying that this is entirely a bad thing. Caring and kindness for others is really important, in especial in the current world climate. Let’s face it, there are a lot of examples of greed, corruption, hoarding, and extremes of selfishness.

However, neglecting ourselves is unhealthy. We need to give ourselves care, whether that is a healthy diet, exercise, or time to read and relax. This is not necessarily about taking a spa day, it is more about looking out for ourselves.

This is not selfish. When we do not care for ourselves, we break down. This may occur physically, emotionally, spiritually, or any combination thereof. As such, we get sick, we lose energy, and we become incapable of taking care of ourselves, let alone anyone else.

Consciousness creates reality. This is why we need to work with our thoughts, feelings and actions in the here-and-now to give ourselves what we desire to live the best lives we can. We are worthy and deserving of that.

Note that I wrote “give ourselves”, not “take for ourselves.” That right there is how we are not being selfish. When we give, whether to ourselves or others, this is not selfish. Taking, however, in particular when it will leave others without, is selfishness.

You are worthy and deserving of all the good in your life. Self-care is not selfish.

What good have you done for yourself today?

These posts are ideas for, and my personal experiences with, walking along the path of life to consciously create reality. I share this journey as part of my desire to make a difference in this world along the way, and empower myself and my readers with conscious reality creation.

Thank you for joining me.

The first year of Pathwalking, including some expanded ideas, is available here.

Originally published at on January 16, 2019.

Written by

I am a practitioner of mindfulness, positivity, philosophy, & conscious reality creation. I love to inspire, open minds, & entertain.

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