We can all be forgiven for being self-absorbed from time to time. But when we look at it as an act of self-preservation, either because of the fact that everybody else appears to be so self-absorbed, it can be quite a challenge to undo this. After all, there are billions of us that think nothing of posting our innermost thoughts for all to see. Social media has become a force for good, as well as a force for bad, in terms of sharing our problems. And when we are so self-absorbed, but we don’t realize it, it could take a life-altering situation to make us realize where we’ve gone wrong. Perhaps our friends have slowly stepped away from us. But if we are to make positive steps to rectify this, how do we go about turning ourselves into a force for good too, rather than a force for self-absorption?
Identifying The Triggers
Sometimes it’s a learned behavior, sometimes it’s a habit we’ve got into. Whatever the triggers could be, it’s about drilling deep into these and figuring out why it’s sent us down this spiral. Thinking about ourselves, and not having any form of empathy for others is natural, to an extent. But we have to do a functional analysis and turn the spotlight on to ourselves and notice when this changed, and when our behavior has altered. Sometimes we can go all the way back to a specific incident in our lives, where everyone around us was so selfish that we needed to self-preserve. Once we discover these triggers, we have to look at the consequences, and if it was actually a force for good in the end.
Making The Relevant Changes
Something like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can help in this respect, but once we’ve pinpointed the fact that we are self-absorbed, we’ve won part of the battle. Making a conscious decision to change our behavior isn’t an overnight fix. But what we can do is figure out which aspect of our behavior we seem to lack in. If we struggle with any sense of empathy, we can start to practice this. A part of it is about being aware that we have to focus on someone else, but there are also handy resources around; www.thehcc.net is an interesting site because it encourages storytelling from the perspective of someone else. In one sense, it’s like acting, but this is a great way to start looking at other perspectives. Once we practice this, like anything, it becomes easier.
Understanding That It’s Better To Help Others
Being self-absorbed is an act of self-preservation, but once we make a conscious effort to get rid of this selfishness, and realize that helping others is the way forward, we can feel better for having helped people. There is an interesting article on www.theconversation.com explaining why being kind makes you feel good. But we can think that we are doing ourselves a favor by being self-absorbed. In actual fact, if we can get over ourselves and focus on helping others, it’s not about the fact that it makes us feel good for helping someone else, but it’s about realizing that we aren’t the center of the universe!
We can all be forgiven for going into ourselves, especially if we suffer chronic stress or various mental health conditions. But it’s not a great way to live our lives. Let’s be a force for good.