Focusing On Yourself Once In A While Doesn't Mean You're Selfish

Focusing On Yourself Once In A While Doesn't Mean You're Selfish

Doing more for me than ever before.

Throughout my whole life I have always been the "yes man."

If someone asked me to do something, I would do it even if I had fifteen other things to do that week. I have always tried to make other people happy.

If my sister had a cheerleading competition, I would miss hanging out with my friends to go to it. If my friend wanted to go one place and I wanted to go another place, we would go where they wanted to go. If someone needed a paper edited and I had three papers of my own to write, I would put their needs first. And I do not regret one single bit of any of that. Yes, it made my life stressful at times, but it was worth seeing them happy.

But now it is time for me to be selfish.

This is my last year of college and I have a lot to do. The fact of the matter is my life is unfolding before my eyes and I can't miss out on it. I have to do what I need to do in order to better myself. If you don't put forth the effort to talk to me or try to see me, you probably won't see me.

It's not because I don't care, it's just because I'm busy. I don't have time to worry about whose feelings will get hurt if I don't check in on them every few days. I keep up with most of y'all on Facebook and that is the beauty of social media. When I get five minutes out of my day, I check to see what my long lest friends are up to. I still see y'all out there slaying life.

I have had to learn to say no when I really don't have time to do something. This has stepped on a lot of toes and made a lot of people upset, but I can't help it. If I have 17 assignments due this week, I'm sorry, but I really don't have time to go out with you. Don't get mad at me when I put school before your need for adventure.

You know how if a plane is crashing you're supposed to put on your oxygen mask before you try to help other people? That's what I'm doing. If I don't finish school and get my life sorted out, then I'm not going to be any help to anyone. I have to make sure my priorities are straight and right now school is my number one.

If you're mad at me because I don't talk to you every day or because I just haven't called you in a while, sorry but I'm really not sorry. Right now my priorities are on other things, but once my life calms down, I'll be sure to get to you. Just please be patient with me while I stumble through my last year of college.

This is my last year to be selfish before I start a real job and begin thinking about starting a family. So please understand that I need to do me right now. Once I get those degrees, I'll help you with whatever you need. But for now, I need you to be okay with the fact that I am focusing on me.

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Scenarios That Will Never Happen

As in, will never ever ever happen.

If you were to tell me that you never sit around and wonder about what you would do if a certain something happened, or what you would say if a certain someone came up and talked to you, then I'd have to call bullshit.

Everyone has those deep-seated, compelling feelings and thoughts that marinate in our minds until they become fully immersed in a concoction of what-ifs and how-comes. These speculations and scenarios become sort of like an obsession. Maybe it stems from jealousy, branches off as an obsession, or maybe the root of all these thoughts is nothing more than anxiety. Regardless, you can't say that you're able to shut off your brain altogether to fully stop these thoughts until the thing that for some reason consumes you suddenly doesn't pique your interest anymore.

So it's established – everyone does this, at least on occasion. But when do these evasive thoughts and worries become more than just that?

I've found that the things I ruminate on the most are people and situations. If I read something nasty about a person, place, or thing, and I know that there's no way it could be true, I sit and wonder why anyone could possibly think that. I don't exactly second guess myself per say, but my mind suddenly trails off on a tangent of potential reasons why that could be.

Alternatively, I often sit and wonder why people become obsessed with callous, egotistical hypocrites who merely have a facade of being kind, successful, happy, pious, or whatever. These are purely examples – nothing more – but I find myself drifting off to a different place at work and thinking about how I'd do things differently if I were in their social circle or what I would say to them given the chance. These scenarios might be possible or they might not, but regardless, it irritates me that there's nothing more I can do besides sit around and stew in a vat of my own daydreams.

The problem with that is that most of the time, I can't do things differently because whether I like it or not, my world does not coincide with the world of which I am daydreaming about. More often than not, I cannot confront the person that I disagree with because it would be weird, argumentative, or impossible to do so.

I cannot change the minds of others on a particular subject because it would accomplish nothing. I cannot transport to certain places to make things happen. Not automatically, anyway. People are set in their ways most of the times. I cannot fix the world, yet in my mind, I try to imagine a scenario in which I can.

The problem with THAT is that I forget to look at what's in my own world. Instead of clearing up an issue I have with my boyfriend or telling my sister why I'm mad at her, I sit around and look at other things in life and try to magically show up in that world, one in which I always reign superior because I always know best.

Sounds conceited, but that's because it is. It's my daydream and I can do what I want, dammit. Isn't that a refreshing break away from everyday life?

It's not as if I think this way of my actual life, that I am all-knowing. The problem is that I know I know nothing. Hence why I drift off into these extensive strings of what-ifs and how-comes. How I would do things differently. How I would say things differently.

It's safer in that world than it is in the real one, where I can lose arguments and start fights with my words and actions.

I suppose the lesson I've come to find is that scenarios are fun for a while, but daydreaming isn't something to do extensively or to even truly worry about. They aren't real life, and they aren't going to fix anyting. Focus on what's in front of you for the time being, and let the make believe happen in your spare time. You won't get anything done with a full mind and no action.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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The 20 Days Of Change Challenge and What It Taught Me

Experiment by changing your life or the lives of others

Change is a healthy, new experiment for the better. It is a mechanism of adding adventure and spontaneous happiness into your life and the lives of others.

What have you always wanted to try? Do you want to fly on a magic carpet throughout the world to travel like Jasmine? Do you want to swim in the ocean like Ariel? Do you want to help others grow, physically like a doctor or mentally like a teacher or psychologist?

The past 20 days, I have decided to choose one of my childhood dreams to challenge myself to learn something new.

First, I wanted to learn to ballroom dance because I'm so in love with Dancing With The Stars (especially Jordan Fisher and Lindsay Arnold). Then, I decided I wanted to also make a difference in the lives of others.

So I challenged myself to the game of 20 questions. Every day for the last 20 days, I have sat next to a new person in my Biology 171 discussion, in the library, the dining hall, or at my extraordinary sorority, Chi Omega (Hoot Hoot!).

Sitting next to these new friends of mine, I asked them 20 questions about their life, their favorite movies, tests they have coming up, hometowns, food, and other details wherever the conversation led us.

By doing so, I was able to grow my knowledge of others and the diversity of the University of Michigan. We all come together because of similarities we have in common, but learning the details of each other's passions and interests is one so astounding.

No matter where, when, why, how, or what, I am always shook with awe at the experiences shaping my new friends' and old friends' backgrounds.

Without these different backgrounds and different experiences and different passions, there would be no uniqueness that makes each country worthwhile to travel to. There would be no architectual specialties and cultured towns within one city.

What would I do without Greek Islands, Chinese Food on Christmas, Italian carbs and creamy cheese? What would I do without the suggestions of movies from others or restaurants of others?

Without these details of others differences, my views would be limited. Limited like a polar bear stranded on an ice block.

Use limits to provide yourself with feedback on what you need to learn to change. Use this change to grow your view of your surroundings.

I expanded my awareness and now I challenge you to do the same. Incorporate change by picking something new, something detailed, something (blue) and expanding your current perspective.

Cover Image Credit: Scott Margolin

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