Are you a giver or a taker?
Do you eat all the cake yourself or do you share it with others?
Everyone is a giver at their very core. We portray the world to be a place full of self-centered blowhards, but we couldn’t be further from the truth. Every day of our lives is spent giving in some way.
Each morning, we give our best effort to get out of bed. Come on, up and at ’em. You have somewhere to be and a boss to milk for your yearly bonus.
Throughout the day, we are frivolously giving away our time to people and actions that we don’t need. The jobs we do (for most of us), classes we attend, gossip-driven friends we converse with, channels we flip through, emails we check, routines we memorize: you could live without them.
We give our hard earned cash (or cash hardly earned, for others) to the big buy-in-bulk stores that think they’re giving us exactly what we want. Two jumbo jars of peanut butter? I’m sure you only wanted one regular-sized jar. A massive big screen TV that will soon be eclipsed by a much bigger 3-D display? How can you keep up?
Regular conversations are given our best effort to maintain — mostly because we have nothing more interesting to talk about.
My day was good. How about yours? Good. Oh, I couldn’t have guessed. Anything exciting happen? No? Interesting… same here.
Holding back our real feelings about life is highly encouraged and forced upon us.
We give everything we have to not appear out of control when something bad happens. If someone crashes into our car, we’re expected to keep our cool, lest we be perceived to be crazy or immature.
You Being Selfish? I Don’t Think So!
If anything, we aren’t selfish enough. We give away our time, our politeness, our money, our dreams, our confidence in the future, our real feelings, and our sense of adventure until it hurts. And what do we get in return? The delusion of happiness brought on by the normalcy of life.
We’ve been way too yielding. Have you ever asked yourself:
What do I want to do?
Is what I’m doing now truly satisfying to me?
Why am I giving so much and getting so little in return?
What people say is wrong: you can have whatever you desire. The catch is, however, that you have to be willing to be selfish enough to get it. It’s okay to give when you want to, but if you end up giving away everything you need just to please the world, you won’t last long.
You must keep yourself alive and happy in order to be able to give. The most abundant givers are the most initially selfish people. Don’t give when you have nothing to give.
How to be More Self-Centered
Not everybody can be self-centered. Some of us need to keep giving and giving until we can give no more.
Some of us are too generous to stop giving now!
If that sounds likes you, then I suggest you discontinue reading this post. Your life would not have been changed anyway. Keep doing what you’re doing — you will get the same results.
But if you want to discover the benefits of selfishness in your life, read on. These timeless tips have proven to be very useful for me.
I’m giving away this value, because I know what I’m gaining weighs more than what I’m putting in: the satisfaction of helping others change their lives for the better.
It’s now time for you to be totally and ruthlessly selfish.
1. Eliminate the Unnecessary
What mindless things are you putting your time in? Checking your email? Reading the local news? Engaging in small talk over at the water cooler with your less-than-exciting coworkers?
Eliminate these trivialities. They do not deserve your time, effort, or generosity. Focus more on what will provide value for yourself and others instead.
2. Start Doing What You Enjoy
The best things in life continue to move you long after you put them down.
Do you enjoy reading or writing stories?
Providing inspiration to the masses?
Going to plays or the opera?
Go do it.
Stop putting off your gratification for matters of lesser importance. Work, taxes, bills, and routines; these are nothing in the face of doing what you love. Make time for these hobbies, since it is when you take part in them that you feel the most alive.
3. Focus On the Direction You Want Your Life to Take
You’ve lived long enough in this world to know what you supremely want for yourself. It’s time for you to start putting your efforts towards that end.
Do you want to end up traveling the world for rest of your life?
Do you want to become a wealthy CEO?
Realize that buying hand bags and gas-guzzling trucks will only keep you that much further away from your life’s dream.
Begin cultivating the valuable skill of saving. Label a jar called “For my life’s dream” and start with one penny. The amount of money in the jar will accumulate if you’re frugal enough.
4. Give Selectively
The best givers are the most selfish: in other words, they give away the things worth giving.
Take Bill Gates for example. He was selfish enough to use his mind to jump-start one of the greatest computer monopolies ever known. Now that he’s gotten what he wanted, Gates is a giver. But you’ll never catch Bill Gates giving away 5 dollars to charity.
Gates is in the process of giving a large chunk of his wealth away to charity.
Be like Bill and give away what’s worth giving away. Don’t give something that nobody (yourself included) would accept.
You’re Already On Your Way
The fact that you were selfish enough to finish this article means you’re already walking in the right direction.
Improve yourself and you improve the lives of others. This is selfishness at the highest level.