Why It’s Okay to be Selfish Sometimes

Selfish Years

We all have one life. That’s a given. How we choose to live that life should be up to us, not someone else. You shouldn’t do things to please others or because someone tells you to. We shouldn’t be following the crowd, the latest trends and we especially shouldn’t be comparing ourselves to other people.

Something I’ve learnt over the years is to keep my cards close to my chest. My next moves, my plans for the future and things I’m doing on the side. It’s not really anyone else’s business but mine, and they usually only want to know to be nosy – not because they actually care. They’re your dreams at the end of the day, not anyone else’s, so do what you have to do to achieve them.

I’ve been reflecting on my past six months of final year and realised I do a lot of things to appear a certain way to people who ultimately have no impact on my life and to just look constantly busy and happy on social media. I also do a lot of things to combat the fear of missing out. I think I’ve spoke about FOMO on here before, but I always feel that I’ll miss something by staying in at the weekends. But what is it I’m really missing? Seeing the same people week in, week out in the same bars, chatting about the same thing? The same playlist being played in McCooleys every Friday night? Am I really missing anything by not being there?

We may already be one month into the new year, but I have some new goals in place. I’m no longer going to be a people-pleaser and do things that I don’t actually want to and I’m going to try my best to stop ‘living my best life’ through Instagram.

If there is one trait I really don’t like in people other than negativity/moaning, it would have to be selfishness. So when I say that it’s okay to be selfish, I mean for yourself – not being selfish towards others. I’m not a fan of people that live their lives without thinking of other people or the impact their actions can have on others – that’s not okay. But below are the only times that I will allow myself to act selflessly and to be selfish.

Time to quit Instagram

Okay, that’s a little bit drastic and I won’t be fully quitting Instagram, but I’ll be taking a little detox for a while. On my personal account I haven’t actually posted a picture on my grid since January 18th which is quite a long time for me, but I feel a little weird when I don’t have an Instagram story live.

I want to stop feeling the need to post everything I’m doing online, because really – who cares? Who cares what I have for breakfast every morning or that I’m out partying every weekend? Do I need to share everything that I do with my followers? It’s consuming my time and it’s consuming me as a person to try and appear like a social butterfly 24/7.

Or am I being too cynical? Is there anything wrong with wanting to post your life on social media all the time? Am I just celebrating life, what I’m doing with it and who I’m spending it with? Or overall, am I just trying to show off?

Your health is your wealth

Last weekend just past, was the first weekend since September that I haven’t been standing in Concert Square at 4am (aside from the two weeks at Christmas) and that was because my parents were over visiting.

Do I really enjoy going out every single weekend? In what way is it benefiting my life? Don’t get me wrong, I love my weekends and can’t wait to go out partying with my best friends, but I really shouldn’t be praying for the weekend every Monday morning. That’s just not how I want to live. I want to wake up excited for my work, excited for life and excited to achieve so many goals each week. But currently, I don’t.

Realistically, the only things I gain from going out every weekend is extra weight from takeaways on the way home, anxiety the next day from whatever happened the night before and hangovers that make me stay in bed until 6pm.

It’s all fun and games at the time, but my health is getting worse, my liver getting smaller, my waistline getting bigger and my bank balance nearly non-existent. But it’s all about making memories and life experiences, right?

Sometimes. But sometimes, it’s okay to want to sit in at the weekend and get some work done. Maybe I could spend time putting some content together and getting ahead of myself in terms of blog posts – now that would be the dream. From now on, I’m going to limit myself to going out only a few weekends per month as I do have a dissertation deadline fast approaching. It’s time I got my life in order I think. I’ve definitely done enough socialising over the past six months to last me the next six months.

Twenties are your selfish years

Stop putting yourself under so much pressure

I’ve realised recently that I put myself under a lot of pressure in terms of working, blogging, socialising, keeping up with university and trying to fit in exercise. Because I’m juggling so much, I often get asked, ‘Where do you find the time?’ The answer? I usually average between four and five hours of sleep per night.

I’m usually awake until 1.30am/2am writing blog posts, then probably in the shower afterwards, then wakening at 7am to get ready for university or work. I’ll then be out all day either in work or the library until 5 or 6pm, then most likely in McCooleys with friends for dinner until around 9pm, and then home to sit on my laptop until the small hours. I can’t remember the last time I watched Netflix. I usually take two-three days to reply to a text message, probably a week before I reply to an email and I wouldn’t even recommend giving me a phone call.

I set deadlines for myself, aiming to push out three blog posts per week, post on my blog Instagram six days per week all while engaging on the platform as well as keeping up with my Twitter timeline. My Facebook and LinkedIn have taken backseats and I’m trying to up my Pinterest game but I haven’t really got the hang of it yet. I try to read other blogs in my spare time (which is now a myth – there is no such thing as spare time), and think of new and interesting ideas for my own blog.

With all of that, try to add in working three days per week, university two days per week, assignment deadlines, thinking about life after graduation, eating, sleeping, showering, reading, socialising and the gym. As you can tell, the gym is at the bottom of my priority list.

However, when I do put myself under pressure, I usually get the best results and feel more accomplished afterwards. When I’m constantly busy, I’m at my most productive. But if your health is suffering or important parts of your life are lacking, then it’s time to reassess.

You have to be the best version of yourself in order to live up to your potential. In order to be the best version of yourself, you have to think about what’s best for you.

It’s all about you

Go and listen to that McFly song on repeat for a while and let it subconsciously deliver the message that your life is about you and the choices you make should reflect the life you want to live.

It’s been said before that your twenties are your selfish years and they really are. For a lot of us, we’re studying at university or just starting out on our chosen career paths. A lot of us don’t have partners tying us down to certain places or relying on us or taking our attention from other things. A lot of us don’t have children that rely on us either.

If you have the luxury to be totally free with no strings attached, then make the most of these years and be selfish with what you choose to do, who you spend your time with and what you spend your time doing. The only person that can give you the life that you want is you. It won’t magically appear in front of you; you have to go out and get it yourself.

Make those tough decisions. Spend more time working on yourself rather than your alcohol threshold. Spend more time making friends that will go for breakfast with you, answer when you call and don’t just appear on a the weekends, drink in hand. Find something that you are passionate about and work on it a lot.

We’ve all heard about the side-hustle and it seems that most millennials have one – so if you want to, think about how you can have your own and differentiate yourself from everyone else. Whether it’s photography, a blog, a YouTube channel, being a make-up artist or even a sport. Find something that fuels your passion other than your 9-5 job.

Be selfish in your twenties if your circumstances allow. It’s your future you’re creating. 

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