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How often do you put yourself first? How often do you do something that’s just for you and not to benefit someone else? You probably don't do it all that often. 


Those with children and families find it more difficult to take a moment just for yourself. There’s always someone to answer to and do something for, and it can become claustrophobic to live that way.

We don't put ourselves first, and it’s mostly because "being selfish" can prompt guilt. It makes us feel like we can’t ask for something or do something for ourselves, otherwise we will inconvenience someone else.

Selfishness isn't something that we want to embody, but the problem is that there is a sliding scale of selfishness. There’s the incredibly selfish act of never doing anything for anyone, but indulging yourself, and then there’s the completely selfless, where you never put yourself first and only ever put other people ahead.

You need to find a balance to have a little of both. You are important, which is why putting yourself first is something that you absolutely have to do at least once or twice. Learning How to Reduce Anxiety and be a little selfless will make a huge difference to your mental health, and it takes empowering ourselves to do it.

While it’s nice to make people happy, you shouldn't have to put everyone first all the time because your happiness matters, too. We can only give what we can and burning out trying to impress and improve the lives of other people is not the way forward. We need to have something for ourselves, and it takes investing in yourself to do that. So, what do you do?

Well, it’s time you learned that putting yourself first is important. Below, we’ve put together a list of ways you can ensure that you act a little less selfless, and a little more selfish. You need the right balance to make this work, and we’ve got some reasons you should put yourself first. 

You’ll Teach People How To Treat You

People will learn from you and if you allow people to take advantage of you, they’ll take that advantage and run. People will put you last if you're doing that for yourself, and while you don't do nice things to get something in return, you should always treat yourself in the way you want other people to treat you. When you start putting yourself first, people will take notice and learn how to treat you better - which is a must!

You’ll Be Far More Confident

Putting yourself first will reflect how confident you feel in yourself. With the right level of confidence, you can stop taking a hit on your life and demand something better. Show the world that you value yourself as much as you value other people, and you’ll enhance your relationships at the same time. Put yourself first from time to time to make a difference in your life. 

Other People Will Be Better Off

You improve the lives of other people when you put yourself first—believe it or not. If you’re tired and exhausted and you’re trying to help others, you will make mistakes or you will fail. So, look after yourself first and it will be easier to find that relaxed, happy state. Others around you will be better off and they'll probably receive you better, too. 

Put Yourself First and People Won't Take You for Granted

Don't be a “yes” woman and people will stop treating you like one. Constantly saying yes to other people is not a good idea—you’re just letting people use you as a doormat. If you’re ready to help and offer, that’s nice to be kind, but it’s not ideal if you’re trying to do fewer favors for others. People take others for granted, and if you’re always letting people walk all over you, you’re going to need a change.

It’ll Show You Who Doesn't Deserve You

There will be some people in your life who won’t be there anymore once you stop doing everything for them. Some people are not meant to be in your life forever. This will become apparent the moment you stop doing favors for everyone. It’s okay that you have to let some people go. After all, are they worth keeping if they’re taking advantage of you? Nope! Life is complicated enough without you needing fake friendships in there, too. Accept the time that you spent with them in your life and let them go.

You Don't Have To Put Others Last

Putting yourself first doesn't mean that you are instantly putting other people last. There is an enormous difference between being inherently selfish and being first in your life. Being selfish means you don't care and you’re too self-absorbed to do anything for anyone ever. Putting yourself first means being as kind and helpful to yourself as much as you are other people. Take care of yourself and you’ll be a better person for it.

Be Your Own Hero

Sometimes, putting other people first stops people from remembering that you are important. However, you need to announce to yourself that you are as important as anyone else. That makes you your own personal hero, and it will help you feel good about yourself. Lift yourself up when you’re down and embrace what YOU need. You won’t regret taking a moment to be for you for a change.

You’ll Function Better

When we are around our friends and family all the time, we forget that we occasionally need space. You need to step up and take that space sometimes, and you can then concentrate on the quality time that you spend with others and not the time you’ll spend doing something for them. People should want to be around you because they love you and respect you, not because you’re doing something for them.

You’ll Appreciate Yourself More

When you decide that you matter, you will appreciate yourself for who you are more than you ever did before. You’ll learn how to put yourself first and get to know that you’re made of stronger stuff than you thought. The value that you place on yourself will be far more than you ever thought possible, and it’s well-deserved, too!

You can draw the line when people ask you for favors and learn that saying “no” isn't a bad thing. You don't need to feel anxious about it, because it’s the right thing to do and you know it deep down.

When you put yourself first, you can learn to gain confidence and be a stronger person. The anxiety you felt not being good enough for other people slowly goes away because you realize that not only are you good enough for them, you’re good enough for yourself, too. The most important lesson that you can ever have here is that you are going to be a far happier person—all because you learned that you are important, too.

Take this lesson and roll with it—even if it’s a scary idea at first.

This is a partnered post.

About the author 


Life & mindset coach, writer, host of podcast This is Type 1: Real Life with Type 1 Diabetes, and full-time analyst in the power industry. I'm passionate about showing people that how we think determines our realities.

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