Do you often find yourself feeling guilty for putting yourself first and prioritizing your needs? If so, you’re not the only one.
Self-care is the act of protecting and preserving your wellbeing and quality of life, especially during stressful times. It’s taking the extra steps to look after your health and prioritize how you treat yourself.
It’s great to think of others and care about what they want. But if you always put yourself last, you fail to honor what you need and therefore can’t give to others. You give back the most when you feel fulfilled inside, and you can’t reach that feeling unless you prioritize yourself.
If you want to take care of yourself without feeling selfish, here are a few ways to help you get started.
Reframe Your Feelings
If you’re going to remove the guilt you feel while taking care of yourself, you first need to understand what that means. Putting yourself first doesn’t mean you’re narcissistic or selfish. It means that you prioritize yourself because you recognize that you have inherent value.
Because you feel shame surrounding self-care, it’s important to reframe how you feel about it. Understand that you can’t please everyone no matter how hard you try or how much effort you put forward. You only have control over yourself. The sooner you realize this, the sooner you can stop worrying about how to put yourself first.
When you start thinking negatively about taking care of yourself, change your mindset. Is prioritizing yourself something you should feel ashamed about? Why do you feel this way instead of embracing your wants and needs? Once you can identify these issues, you can start to accept putting yourself at the top of your self-care list.
Set Healthy Boundaries
A huge part of taking care of yourself is to learn how to set healthy boundaries. When you stand up for yourself, it shows that you have self-respect and values that you’re not willing to sacrifice. When you realize your worth, you align more with your mind, body, and soul so you can give yourself what you need.
Setting standards allows you to build successful relationships that fulfill you and add to your life instead of taking away from it. Healthy boundaries also allow you to drop relationships with people who make you feel unsafe to say no or deny their wants. They allow you to attract attention from the right people who respect your boundaries.
Seek Professional Guidance
Sometimes, it’s not enough to go through problems by yourself. You can do all the research possible, but you still need help navigating your feelings and how to work through them. THat’s where professional help comes in.
Talking to a mental health professional can help you communicate your needs and identify the underlying issues of your problems. Getting to the root of the issue helps you practice self-awareness and work to overcome it. You won’t feel better unless you work through the problem by understanding it.
Your mental health matters as much as your physical and emotional health. Remember that you deserve to put yourself first, prioritize your needs, and feel good about yourself. No one else is going to take care of you the way you can, so it matters to reach out when you feel helpless.
Over to You
It can be difficult to take care of yourself without feeling guilty or selfish. But when you put yourself first, it’s easier to pour that love and attention into others. You’re a better friend, lover, and person when you put yourself first and tend to your needs. How will you put your guilt aside and move forward to prioritizing yourself?