A Defining Moment

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It has been too long since my last entry (not my intention). However, due to recent events, I have been “gifted” more time in my day and I have gotten a little too comfortable wallowing in my schedule adjustment. I was sleeping in every day. Eating total shit food every day. Binge watching waaay more than what would even remotely be acceptable. Not contributing to the household- in the manner of cleaning etc, considering the financial contribution has been lacking as of late. And it got me thinking… can depression mimic being selfish AF? Is it really depression? Am I actually depressed, or am I selfishly enjoying the fact that I don’t have to answer to anyone? I have a feeling that there will be other entries with similar levels of embarrassment. Topics that will be difficult to expand on. This may just be the first. Let’s take a look, shall we?

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Merriam-Webster defines depression as:

1 : an act of depressing or a state of being depressed: such as a (1) : a state of feeling sad, anger, anxiety, and depression
(2) : a mood disorder marked especially by sadness, inactivity, difficulty in thinking and concentration, a significant increase or decrease in appetite and time spent sleeping, feelings of dejection and hopelessness, and sometimes suicidal tendencies
(SO ME RIGHT NOW!!… minus the suicidal tendencies)

Sounds fun. Now, let’s look at the good ol’ MW’s definition of selfish:

1 : concerned excessively or exclusively with oneself : seeking or concentrating on one’s own advantage, pleasure, or well-being without regard for others
2 : arising from concern with one’s own welfare or advantage in disregard of others
a selfish act
3 : being an actively replicating repetitive sequence of nucleic acid that serves no known function
selfish DNA
also : being genetic material solely concerned with its own replication

Well shit, look at that!! We’re selfish even down to our genes!! What does this have to do with today’s post, you ask? Don’t worry, I’ll ramble enough and get us there eventually.

“Or this will be total crap all the way through and will wind up getting deleted… “

“Thanks Ted.”

So now, coming back to the point- and really what I am intending this ongoing blog to be about: When is it okay to be “selfish?” How to determine if it’s really something like depression. Or is it just laziness- and does that fall in line more with selfish tendencies or depression? What sort of things are considered selfish, and yet are totally necessary for our own health and well being? I know there are a lot of people out there (myself included), who will make certain decisions based entirely on how it might be perceived by others. If it’s thought to be considered “selfish,” we may choose something else. By MW’s definition of selfish, when we put ourselves above all else, it’s bad… but is it, really- if it’s not always?

In a former life, I used to coach business owners to the understanding that we have to put ourselves first. Before we can effectively do the things we want to for others. I would pose this question:

“Who takes care of you?” The answer would inevitably be, “I do.” Exactly. So then the back and forth would continue as such;

“So, you take care of yourself? Alright. If you are not taking care of yourself, can you take care of your loved ones the way you want to take care of them?” … “No” …

“And if you’re not able to take care of your loved ones the way you want to, can it negatively impact your business? If we’re not doing alright ‘upstairs’ (I would usually tap my head here) and our health sucks, is that hurting our loved ones?” …”Yes”… “And if things aren’t going well at home, are we productive when we get to the office? …”No”…

Photo by Leio McLaren (@leiomclaren) on Unsplash

The idea was always to put an emphasis on the point that we have to take care of ourselves first and foremost. It always has struck me as an insane idea that “Corporate America” has created, where people instinctively feel that work comes first. Why? “Well, I have to make money to support my family and to do the things I want to do.” That may be true to a point. However, I’m always reminding myself of a great clip on YouTube, check it out here.

It’s about passion. It’s about purpose. It’s about being selfish AF! Why is it so wrong to want to exercise our selfish tendencies? When is it okay vs not okay? My point was always to help the business owners understand how important it was to make sure they were at the top of their list of priorities. Not their S.O., not their kids, not their job. They needed to be their own top priority. Why is that considered selfish? I don’t personally believe it is. It takes more than eating well and exercise to be “healthy.” Sometimes it takes that minor splurge or treat. Sometimes it takes that little adventure away from home. Sometimes it means getting that 100th unnecessary T-shirt or fuzzy blanket. We all have our “things.”

The plan moving forward, is to explore each different area that may be thought of as “selfish” when we indulge in it- and determine if it really is. Obviously, the opinions expressed are my own and are meant to be taken at nothing more than face value or with a grain of salt or whatever sort of colloquialism you choose to insert here. And maybe by exploring more of the things that are considered selfish by everyday society, it will help better understand certain elements of depression and the coping mechanisms of depression.

Feel like getting an ice cream now…

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