Word of the Week

Word of the Week: Selfish

Want to share this with someone?

I'm wondering when is the last time that someone has referred to you as this week's word: selfish?

Maybe you didn't come home to see your family on a holiday. Maybe you couldn't make it to a friend's birthday party. Maybe you didn't take on an extra responsibility in an organization. You might have had the time but, well . . . . it just wasn't what you needed to do.

Selfish is defined as lacking consideration for others; concerned chiefly with one's own personal profit or pleasure.

If you've been around religious or spiritual circles for any length of time, being called selfish is most certainly something praised. For example, as a child, my church encouraged me to memorize these words taken from the book of Philippians, "Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit." Key message: think about others before you do yourself always.

But here's the problem with this line of teaching: so easily it can be taken too far. It can make you think your job is to be a doormat to everyone around you. You believe that YOU don't matter as much as others do.

Remember, though, Jesus said love your neighbor as yourself. So, my friend, how in the world can you love your neighbor well if you don't first love yourself?

Being selfish can be a wonderful spiritual act!

Today I want to remind you; you can not be all things to all people. You can not go to every event your boss, your mother or your child wants you to attend. You can not change yourself in the person everyone needs from you, even in a crisis.

And while that might mean someone calls you (or thinks of you as) "selfish," please don't let that vibe enter your life.

I really love how Brene Brown puts it here: "When someone spews something really hurtful, don't pick it up, and rub it in your heart and snuggle with it and carry it around for a long time. Don't even put energy in kicking it to the curb. You've got to SEE IT, step AROUND it, and keep going."

This week: just say NO to someone's opinion of your "selfishness."

Cheers to you this week as you do the work that is yours to do. Be selfish!



P.S. If you'd like to think more about this topic, I'd love to share this post with you I wrote elsewhere called, "What is Saving Your Life Right Now?"