Write | Inspire | Dream
In several blogs, I’ve sprinkled in this thought, “Being selfish is necessary to achieve your dreams.” But why? Why is being selfish and making selfish decisions needed to achieve your dreams? No one is going to hand you your dreams or gift you the life you’ve always wanted. So when I say you need to be “selfish” to achieve your dreams, I mean that you need to make decisions for only you. Too often in life, we have a long list of people whose opinions and feelings we’re putting before our own. We worry about what other people think of our dreams, goals, and desires. We allow others to judge whether or not we’re in the “right” spot in our lives. And all too often, we’re comparing our lives to those around us.
Instead of allowing people to inspire us, we judge their lives. We analyze differences and make negative comparisons, often making us feel behind or unsuccessful. The truth is, everyone’s journey is so different. We all experience life at different paces, learning different lessons, and growing at different times. I’ve said before that I believe everything in life happens for a reason. I also believe that at any moment, at any time, you’re right where you’re meant to be. Your life’s journey is unfolding the way it’s supposed to. So, when I say being selfish will help you achieve your dreams. I mean that being selfish means always putting yourself, your opinion, values, and dreams before anything or anyone else.
Be Selfish in Your Decisions
Everything we do affects our lives. Every decision we make has a repercussion, positive or negative, on our lives. When you’re selfish in your decisions, it means that you understand that it sometimes may upset another person or disrupt a plan, but when you’re reaching for your dreams, they must come first. In the 5 Bad Habits to Kick in 2021 blog, I talk about several bad habits that impede us from chasing our dreams, like saying yes when you should say no. I strongly encourage you to go back and read the bad habit blog because when you’re able to recognize these bad habits in your life, you can begin changing them. Many of these habits, not committing long-term, letting failure stop you from moving forward, waiting for the “right” opportunity, each of these excuses and habits keeps us from our dreams.
Your friends and family should ultimately support your dreams. If they don’t, it’s often because they’re jealous you’re so bold to chase such a big dream. Don’t fear the opinion or potential disappointment of others. So when you’re making any decision, small or big, be selfish and understand how it will affect your life. Find a happy balance of time with your family and friends and time for yourself to work and achieve. I know it can sound intimidating or even like it could be too much, but I mean “Be Selfish in Your Decisions” as a blanket statement. Every decision that comes your way, every question that requires an answer, choose the answer that will best affect you.
Don’t Compare Your Life and Success to Others
Being selfish also means focusing the majority of your energy on yourself. When you’re focusing on what your life looks like compared to someone else’s or their success, you waste time exerting energy on something that really doesn’t affect you, AND you have no control over. Focus your energy on improving yourself, on chasing your dreams, things that do affect your life and your future. Being selfish in your life also requires confidence in who you are, your success, and your decisions. When you focus on yourself and stop comparing everything in your life to others around you or those you idolize, you’re able to focus more on the decisions you’re making and what you need to change. What are you doing right? What are you doing wrong? When you compare your life to others, you’re too busy asking the question, “What am I doing that’s different from them?”
How to be Selfish & Live Intentionally
Let me specify that I do mean selfish in the best possible way. I don’t mean to disregard the feelings and opinions of others completely. What I do mean is allowing outside influences in when they’re needed and positive, not when they’ll drag you down. When you live intentionally, you gain confidence and power in your life. I like to think that dreams are our own selfish love. They require time, dedication, passion, and persistence. They require us to be vulnerable and the ability to recover from failure to achieve greatness. To get to this point, you must live a life with intention. Intentions to move forward, to work hard, and intentions to succeed. You will never reach this point if you’re allowing the toxicity of social media or someone’s opinion of you keep you from moving forward.
In the Blog, Challenging Yourself to Achieve Your Dreams, I go in-depth into the process I lay out for myself when reaching a new goal. I talk about dreams being a selfish love primarily because of the amount of time any dream usually takes to achieve. But when you’re living a healthy and positive routine with productive habits, you create an environment for yourself to succeed. This may not seem like a selfish task, but I believe it is. Your time is valuable and it belongs to you. Don’t ever feel obligated to give up that time if it’s not the choice you want to make.
I understand that over time, our priorities change. We have families, children, obligations to others, and in those times, it’s okay for your dreams to take a back seat for a bit. But remember, that’s a temporary moment because your dreams will never be achieved without you. So if you’re in a place in your life where your only obligations are to yourself, be completely selfish because now is the time to change your life.