“I’m there for everyone else, but no one is there when I need them.”
While those exact words may not have been used, I’ve seen this sentiment run across my timeline a lot in the last week.
I guess it stuck out because I know how that feels …
And apparently you guys do too.
You’re listening to problems, giving advice, being that shoulder to cry on, helping pick up pieces …
But when you’re not at your best and need someone to lean on, your phone is as dry as chicken under a cheap buffet’s heat lamp.
How can all of us be having the same experience?
So I got to thinking … and came to this conclusion …
I don’t think people are making a conscious decision to be turds … I just think it may be somewhat human nature to be inherently selfish.
And I think this selfishness is rooted in survival.
How, Sway? You ask.
Ok, instead of a story this time, let’s use a metaphor.
Clearly, we have opposable thumbs and all, but we’re still animals. And while we don’t have to tear at each other’s throats over the last piece of dead zebra carcass in some obscure desert, we all have to get what we need to make it another day.
And in the world we have so carelessly constructed these days, what we need is emotional connection; someone to care for us.
In a sea of a million faces, we need someone to see ours.
So we take
… TAKE all of the attention given from those people who actually see us.
We take so much because it feels good for someone to care for us, but we never give much thought to the person we’re taking from … and how they feel.
Because caring for and giving to others doesn’t contribute to our survival.
If we’re going back to our carcass in the desert metaphor, I can’t imagine hungry animals being like “Nah, bro, you can have that piece of mangled zebra. Looks like you need it more than I do.”
Now I’m not saying that we’re all just walking around intentionally being emotional succubus on people. I know way more kind people than I know complete turds.
What I’m saying is that it’s natural us to take.
What we have to make sure of, however, is that we’re:
- Having an exchange of emotional connections; giving something back
- Not draining the giver of all of their energy until they have nothing left for themselves.
And for those few folks in the world that only give and never take too much …
I want you to know …
That it’s OK for you to be selfish too;
Selfish with your time;
Selfish with your attention;
And selfish with how much of yourself you give to other people.
And while it may suck balls initially because you’re going to be going against what you’re naturally inclined to do (care for others), I promise you’ll be thankful in the long run.
You cannot continue to pour into cups if you’re empty. Do what you need to do to fill yourself up.
Until next time folks,
Love and Light,
You can also find all of my books The Becoming of Us, Vol. I, The Becoming of Us, Vol. II, What’s Hiding in the Dark: 10 Tales of Urban Lore, and They Eat on Amazon: