The two most important things in life

July 2015

The two most important guidelines for life are, in my opinion, how you take care of yourself, and how you take care of others – in that order. They must be in that order because if you don’t do the first one well, you won’t be able to do the second properly.

In my experience women, especially, make the mistake of putting the needs of others above their own needs. Those who do that would be doing better — both for themselves and for others – if they took care of themselves first.

Think about it. If you don’t take care of yourself — if you don’t find ways to meet your own needs — you will necessarily be resentful of any time and effort you spend meeting the needs of others. This resentment may not be conscious, but it is inevitable.

Suppose, for example, that you are really tired. You need to take a nap. But your granddaughter wants some attention, and she wants it from you. Many grandparents would put aside their need to satisfy their granddaughter. I’ve done that myself. It’s not good for either of us.

When I ignore my exhaustion to play with my granddaughter, I am impatient and irritable. I can’t help it, and I give my granddaughter the mistaken idea that I don’t like playing with her (Or even worse that I don’t like her).

The best thing I could do is to take care of myself and NOT play with her. Tell her the truth; I need a nap, but I’ll play with her later. She’ll be disappointed, even upset. But I can suggest things she might do while I nap. And when I’m rested, I’ll take care of her by keeping my promise. We’ll both have a good time. She’ll know I like playing with her, and that I like her too.

Her disappointment will be long forgotten.

Please follow and like us:

Leave a Reply