We all have unique personality traits, based on variations in tendencies we share. Some folks are more like this than others, and some are less like that than others. Many have characteristics that are common for most people, and some have traits that are practically non-existent in others. Some people are natural storytellers. Some, not so much. Some people have a gift for handiwork. Some are all thumbs. Some people are great with children. And, some you would never leave your child alone with. Each of us is gifted with more or less, or absolutely none of, this characteristic or that. There is, however, something all human beings share. We are all self-centered.
This inherent self-centeredness may be the most important aspect of the human experience for us to be aware of. Now, I think traits fall on a spectrum. Like a scale, say of one to ten, where one is the least and ten is the most. But for the sake of discussion, let’s just say, that when it comes to self-centeredness, there seems to be two kinds of people. People who care more about others than they do for themselves, and people who care more about themselves than anyone else. For the sake of discussion, let’s call the first group “selfless” people and the second “selfish” people.
Selfless people are generally happier and live more rewarding and fulfilled lives. Selfish people may think they are on the right way because, hey, if they don’t focus on satisfying their own needs, wants and desires, who will? It makes sense to them. Most selfish people don’t even realize it. And it doesn’t end well.
The most difficult thing about being a selfless person is that the world is so filled with selfish people! They’ll take advantage of you. They’ll use you. They’ll abuse you. Selfish people hurt people. You can’t beat them… but don’t join them.
Selfless people have a powerful advantage. When you live selflessly, it is easier for you to identify those who are selfish and those who are selfless. Selfish people miss the mark here because they tend to not trust anyone. When you embrace selflessness, you will make better choices when choosing whom with to associate. You’ll have a better life.
So how do we know which we are? We self-diagnose. It’s not easy. It requires personal and thorough inventory of yourself. We must analyze our own behavior. For example, ask yourself, when having a conversation with someone, are you more interested in hearing what the other has to say, or do you spend most of your verbal energy talking about you?
How to shake off selfishness and become a selfless person? It’s simple. But not easy… more to come on that.