In the midst of “taking time for ourselves” and “concentrating on us,” we have allowed self-care culture to swallow us whole, turning us into budding narcissists as we carefully pull off our anti-aging mask and sip our deserving glass of wine poured from an overpriced bottle.
While those “me time” moments are necessary for our sanity and wellbeing, they aren’t the end-all-be-all feat that the self-care industry brainwashed us with. What the buzzy self-improvement industry has failed to tell us is self-care phenoms are just a small piece of the lasting happiness puzzle.
The secret to (genuine, lifelong) happiness is this…
If you want to be happy, make other people happy. If you want to feel better, make other people feel better.
The kicker: You have to do it consistently for the feeling to stick.
The term self-confidence is misleading. Perhaps the term self-care is even misleading. We are being misdirected by the “self” portion because confidence doesn’t from within. It comes from other people.
When people feel like they are helping you out — like they are the expert on something because of your willingness to ask them for advice — their confidence starts to build. When you are consistent in your efforts to reach out with questions only they can answer, they begin to feel important, valued and believed in. And (not?) consequently, confident.
Entrepreneur Culture — Who Do You Trust?
Do you ever find yourself asking “What’s in it for them?” questions after someone you admire has responded to your query on how to get ahead in your career or how to navigate unfamiliar business territory?
I’ve been in contact with a well-respected author the past few weeks and every time she responds to my questions (always that same day), I am somewhat puzzled as to why she’s helping me, free of charge.
She reveals things to me I’m certain other people in the industry would charge a pretty penny for. Why? Because they can and because they do.
And it got me thinking…
Why can’t we help people without motive? Why are we surprised when someone helps us without asking for something in return?
Because self-care’s distant cousin, life-coaching, has everyone thinking they are experts, masters and celebrities based off advice they give that isn’t even advice, but mere opinions and suggestions.
In a world of insta-gurus, how are we supposed to know who to trust? How are we supposed to differentiate the authentic from the fake? How do we know who will give us sound advice when there is so much noise we can’t see straight?
I think trusting our gut is powerful (always and in this regard) in fishing out the sketchy and holding on to the greats, and I also think having a credible background is not everything. I think it’s more about who you vibe with and why.
Because when it comes to passion, business and everything in-between, don’t you want to be with the people who are on your side because they believe in you? Rather than people who are on your side to get money out of you?
People shoving products in your faces and programs down your throats aren’t in it to help you. They’re in it to help themselves.
So far, I have found two people (in the podcast world) I believe sincerely enjoy helping others reach their goals and potential — Jessica Zweig Fisher of the Simply.Be podcast & Steve Sims of The Art of Making Things Happen podcast.
They are both (in contrasting ways) no bullshit, tell it like it is, industry experts who want nothing in return other than an iTunes review to yes — help grow their businesses and following — but mainly to spread the good word on being an actual, helpful human being sans bullshit advertisements and meaningless endorsements.
And if these are the only two people I ever come across who are in business first to help people, second to make the world more fun, and third to make money, then I feel lucky to have stumbled upon them.
Think twice about your self-care “needs.” Do you need to get your nails done, or do you need to be a nicer person? Do you need a pair of expensive shoes you can’t afford to make yourself feel better, or do you need to give someone who is actually in need a pair of your own shoes?
So much of life’s enjoyment is about spending it with the right people. If the people you’re hanging out with (or working with) aren’t making you laugh, aren’t supporting your goals, and aren’t celebrating who you are, you need to find people who will gladly do all of those things and more because they enjoy your company.
Self-care is important. But it isn’t everything.
If you liked this article, please do let me know in the comments or in my inbox.
As Steve Sims says, “Don’t be selfish. Spread the wealth.”
Thanks for reading!