Yea, just like that. Me first. Selfish, yes. Necessary, unfortunately it is sometimes. And that doesn’t make it any easier for someone like me who has a hard time saying no to people I care about. I remember years ago, before I was a full time writer, telling my girlfriend at the time that she’s going to have to make a decision. I told her that my time, effort, and energy will be primarily on building my career, and that wasn’t going to change until those career goals were reached.
If you’ve read all of my posts, you know how that ends. And I don’t blame her at all for eventually leaving. But now that I’ve gotten to phase one of my career, I guess it’s only normal to wonder if the sacrifice was worth it.
To be honest, even in my weakest moments I say yes it was worth it. In my strongest moments I say I had no choice. But that’s not true. I did have a choice, and I made it. And she made hers.
Was I selfish? Is it possible to make a “me first” decision without being thought of as selfish? Either within your own mind or by everyone around you?
My mom retired on January 1st of this year. I threw her a retirement party and invited all of her friends. Near the end of the night, I asked some of them to come say a few words.
They all had their own special and unique experiences with my mom, but one message was consistent among everyone. And that was how giving my mom had been to each of them. How she had sacrificed in some small way to better their lives.
And when they spoke that night, each of them told her it’s her turn to now be selfish. To live her life in retirement for herself.
After over 40 years of giving, they gave her a pass to be selfish.
I guess it’s one of the characteristics of me being a Millennial that I don’t want to wait that long to get a selfish pass. I live my life the way I want to live it right now. And I’m working everyday to keep creating my ultimate vision of how I want my life to be.
“At what cost” is probably one of the first questions that comes to mind. And the closer I get to that dream life, the more I realize the parallel between sacrifice and success. So as you see me grow, see me write more books, see my fan base expand, know that I gave up a lot along the way.