572. Selfishness and Equilibrium in Self CreationOr redefining selfishness
I am looking at this word with the purpose of practically using it as a way to integrate ‘me-time’ and self-consideration when it comes to day to day living activities where, as I’ve explained in the past, I’ve had a tendency to put-off everything that had to do with ‘me-time’ and self-enjoyment time and instead geared myself with the idea of ‘always having to be doing something I’d define as productive, of use to others, of benefit to others’ and in that, create certain satisfaction of yes ‘producing something’ that to my eyes and consideration is of ‘worth’ and ‘value’ based on the support It could directly provide to others, but in this, I was at the same time neglecting this me-time where I can in fact disconnect from everything/everyone and as this awesome recording Wanting to Get Away From it All - Quantum Systemization - Part 155
explains, have this time where one does something for oneself, for one’s enjoyment at least for an hour every day.
I’ve walked in a way quite a process with this, because I’ve made it a habit to go walking on almost a daily basis for almost a decade now and I’ve defined that as the ‘me time’ where I go out for more than an hour and get away from computer and my usual environment where I created that deliberately notion of ‘I have to be doing something’, which has been supportive over time and an enjoyable time.
However, there were other hobbies and things I previously enjoyed doing that I completely put off and stopped doing altogether, like arts – painting, drawing, photography - because of defining it as something ‘selfish to do’ because I deemed it as ‘not useful for anyone’ as in ‘benefitting them in their life and process’ which was the kind of logic that I’ve used for quite some time to constantly decide and assess what I ‘should be doing’ and in that, I definitely refrained myself many times from actually doing what I’ve naturally enjoyed doing for myself before, including reading, playing music which I have to be quite honest I haven’t done in a very long time.
To me this denial of doing that which I enjoyed became a definition of a ‘virtue’ as I explained in previous blogs, and in that believing that this was part of the process, to stop doing that which would give me some kind of enjoyment or personal satisfaction and only focus on that which ‘benefits everyone else’ in one way or another. However this is only at a mind level, because I definitely not only did that with my time in reality, I could have easily integrated this ‘me time’ or ‘selfish time’ while continuing doing what I was focusing on at the time in the past, but in my absolutism, extremism and ‘black or white’ mentality, I tended to completely ‘cut my arm off’ and believe that I just could not give me the time to do something that I judged in one way or another as ‘selfish to do.’
Now, where did notion of ‘having to deny to myself’ doing that which I would naturally enjoy doing and that I had judged as ‘unproductive, useless, good for no one’ led me? Well, it was leading me to a reality of not building anything for/as myself that I could genuinely call ‘me’ and ‘for myself’ entirely, in a way having this ‘selfish activity’ where I can not only enjoy myself but actually support me to transcend all of the judgments, denials, ideas, beliefs and even self-doubt and giving up experiences that I’ve imposed onto something as seemingly ‘simple’ as painting or doing any form of artwork.
So, it is so as the audio I mentioned above explains on how in only focusing on one’s work/responsibilities, on what we have to constantly be doing ‘for others,’ and not taking time for oneself, one is actually missing out on oneself, not really getting in contact with who we are, what we want to do and in fact see what is it that I have left ‘behind’ in this notion that ‘I cannot be selfish with my time’ and have denied myself to do that I in fact enjoy and assists me the most in developing my creative potential as a person, learn more about myself and even assists me in expanding and growing, which I had completely forgotten about myself how dedicate and detailed I can be when doing something that I am enjoying to give shape to : )
Interestingly enough I had not entirely seen how my idea of giving up something ‘selfish’ was in fact also due to the various patterns that emerge within me when having a ‘blank slate’ and create something in the moment, which even as I write this there is this very slight movement that I feel on my forearms, almost like a physical remembrance of how I have to dare and make decisions to move, to do, to create something while facing the inner judge where I would constantly say ‘no’ to what I defined as my ‘selfish desires’ and instead direct me to do something that I defined as more productive, of support for others, advancing work/responsibilities, etc.
So the consequences of not giving myself this ‘selfish time’ so to speak is, as I’ve been explaining before, that I did get to a point of feeling like there is something ‘missing’ in it all. One can be a very ‘responsible’ person for something set that we have to do on a daily basis, but one is not really developing, growing and expanding out of one’s comfort zone which becomes work, responsibilities, and the ‘daily tasks’ that are constant or ‘always the same,’ which leads to a dissatisfaction about one’s life with an experience of lostness of ‘where am I within this whole equation? Where am I going with my life? What is it that I am creating for me, for myself, that I enjoy and that is not related to constantly doing it ‘for money/ for others’? And that’s how I opened up the point of doing art again, because of the ‘conflictive’ relationship I had created towards it within myself based on this morality-eye of it being something ‘selfish’ for me to do, almost existing in a denial of enjoyment, of having this thing that I do for, as and by myself.
Another example is I thoroughly enjoy putting jigsaw puzzles together. In past years I’ve done quite a few, thousands of pieces etc. yet, I started judging it as ‘a waste of time,’ as something that is ‘insignificant to do’ or that doesn’t ‘benefit anyone else,’ and in that, have stopped making them, except for a time when I got sick some 4 years ago where I was ‘ordered by doctor’ to rest more, which was also the result of me taking a sudden leap of ‘taking responsibility’ for something in an attempt to ‘direct the ship’ in an unprecedented situation so to speak, which over time ‘led me’ but in fact ‘I led myself to’ have a form of burnout manifested in my physical body in quite an obvious manner. So that’s the time I last made a puzzle… so! should I wait to get sick again and be ‘ordered to take some rest’ to then ‘give me the permission’ to do something I enjoy/for fun? Hell no. It might not be ‘puzzles’ right now, but it sure can be something else that I enjoyed.
This also leads me to touch on the word ‘leisure’ as well because I’ve had a ‘no go’ relationship to this word where the notion of ‘taking time off’ or ‘vacation’ sounds good but it’s never a ‘full disconnect’ for me, and it hasn’t been that way for many, many years, probably 7 years where I had restrained access to internet in order to fully disconnect from everything. And, I discovered that’s where I then focused more on my relationships with people, on enjoying the moments with ‘doing nothing’ or watching others’ lives go by and what did I naturally geared myself to? Photography. Yet at the time, there was a constant nagging thought of ‘all the work/responsibilities I’m missing out on right now’ and ‘all that I will eventually have to catch up to’ which became a form of ‘anxiety,’ which is not cool at all. I mean, if it’s vacation, it should be full vacation, completely disconnecting, and I’ve sort of tested that recently though not fully to the point of not seeing my cellphone in one entire day. Not sure that will be possible either, or at least that’s what I think at the moment, yet even if it’s not a possibility for me to ‘fully disconnect’ for some time, it can be done for a couple of hours a day and stop having this ‘work, work, work’ mentality as well, which is in a way out of a judgment and fear of ‘not being productive,’ of not doing ‘something supportive for others’ or fearing ‘being irresponsible’ in the day and in that of course implying that I’ve valued what I do and am based on how it ‘relates to others,’ instead of entirely doing it for me, as myself, my decision, my responsibility and point of accountability, which is quite different than placing ‘others’ as ‘my reason for being/doing/living.’
What I just explained is the ‘selflessness’ that I have to turn into a form of practical and moderate selfishness of course – not going into the extreme - where the principle as Bernard Poolman once shared – paraphrasing – “if you are best for you, then you are best for all” which I ‘thought’ I was doing and living already, but it takes one good look at oneself to see how much I was denying, refraining or judging myself for doing it based on seeing it through the eyes of ‘selfishness’ while at the same time covering up the actual ‘uncharted territory’ that having this me-time in fact implies as an opportunity for self-creation in whichever way I decide it to be.
What does living a practical and considerate form of selfishness as ‘me time’ or ‘living for and as myself’ mean? Two things for me: I have to be the starting point and origin of everything I do, to stop doing things based on morality of what’s ‘good for others’ and what’s ‘useless for others’ and secondly, make a self-honest decision about how I decide to spend my time, to distribute my responsibilities throughout the day in a way where I can also ensure I give me some ‘me time’ to do what is now a form of hobby yet also ‘work’ at the same time, and stop having what I believe are ‘others eyes’ on top of that, because it’s really only been myself and my own judgments towards doing something ‘for me’ that have limited my ability to actually do it, and nope this is not a self-victimization point because I am fully aware how I did this entirely for myself, ever since I was a little girl, having this ‘duty’ mindset as my own policeman in the head, lol which proves how I had to make of ‘school work’ also art work in order to feel responsible AND creative at the same time! LOL! That’s why I didn’t have an issue with ‘how I would spend my time’ back then because I linked both ‘responsibility’ and ‘hobby’ in one, which matched my workaholic personality, yet I don’t need to place myself ‘in school’ to do the same and I’ve been implementing this for the past weeks with cool results in my scheduling.
This is another way of looking at living creative authority, where I decide to make changes in how I approach my life, my time, my responsibilities, my ‘me time’ and see how I do/how it goes as I implement and live these changes on a daily basis.
Sure, there are some changes on how I approach things thus far, a bit less with a rush of having to be ‘on top of all things’ and whenever I get to still do that, I am learning to check with myself to see if I am pressuring myself, to the point of ‘sacrificing’ something that I ‘really wanted to do for myself’ for the sake of ‘fulfilling’ certain ideas of myself through stuff/things that I would usually do, which I also know as a somewhat former ‘workaholic’ it becomes a very ‘justifiable’ comfort zone to not be with ourselves, learn to enjoy ourselves, discover who we are when having this ‘free time’ and our creative abilities in whichever way they exist in each one of us, because that’s what has been challenging to me, and to stop the ‘dutiful’ mindset in the midst of it all, therefore that’s a current walking process for me.
What have I found in this relative ‘short’ time of giving myself more time ‘for me’ is that there is a lively spark emerging in me, based on having a reconciliation with doing arts and creating a project for it in the long run, which is certainly something that I vaguely had ‘in mind’ since the beginning of the year, but now it’s definitely a more settled and ongoing path which required me to get things going in all practical ways, from making the space to do art and then actually taking the time of the day for it, which is great so far. Now! The point is to diversify it because, as I explained, I can become artsy workaholic LOL so, I’ll look at integrating other different things to do for myself, which is a walking process as I speak.
Now what does that mean if I become best for me as a fulfilled individual that is not only taking responsibility for things, tasks, commitments ‘as usual’ but also takes the time for personal recreation and leisure and self-enjoyment? Well that’s definitely the kind of life that I consider we should all have where there’s an equilibrium in doing what we ‘have to do’ based on yes living in a survival system, requiring money and the rest of it - and also giving oneself this me-time which definitely assists in placing our lives/our ways/our paths into perspective and leaves space for creation, self-creation, creativity, recreation – whichever way it can be placed – which is a regenerative process as I see it, very necessary to be in fact self-satisfied, which will prevent me from getting to a point in life where I’m bitter, dissatisfied and believing I’ve done ‘so much for others’ but not really living my life for and as myself.
So! I prevent myself from doing that from here on and create an equilibrium in my day to day living, which means I become a ‘healthy’ person that is living in a world of yes responsibilities, tasks, commitments and ‘selfish time’ or ‘me time’, where I am a part of the whole that lives according to what I consider is suitable, healthy, balanced and enjoyable for/as life itself in this reality.
Thanks for reading.