If this article is for anyone in particular, its for the individual who like myself is struggling to find happiness because everyone else’s needs have consumed yours. I say this with love, but sometimes you must put the needs of others on the shelf for your own. I have a core group of family and friends who are always there for me. This article is not to diminish their support rather draw a line between those people who deserve our time and the ones holding us back. For starters you don’t have to respond to every text right away or answer every call. What you should do is stop taking care of everyone else and take care of yourself.
I recently went through a breakup that feels more like a divorce than a breakup. During the painful process I learned the hard lesson of why you shouldn’t give up your time so freely. During my healing process I donated my time to strangers and acquaintances. At the time I was panicked, stressed and felt like I was being held back but I didn’t realize it was because I was overextending myself to people who didn’t earn my time. I was taking care of their immediate needs and denying mine.
It’s hard enough to be available to your inner circle all the time, but lending a helping hand to everyone you come into contact with can weigh you down. I was deflecting from my real concern which was moving on post breakup. For you it may be the stress of work, family, life. We all struggle to find a healthy balance from time-to-time. When I noticed I was causing myself anxiety over cancelling plans with a friend to go to the movies I realized my alone time is valuable and that is what needed to be prioritized. If committing to plans is a cause of stress for you your body might be telling you to slowdown and take time for yourself.
The healthiest people I know set strict boundaries for their time. They don’t allow anyone to compromise their happiness. For some that might sound cruel but the benefit to being selective with your life is the difference of choosing to live your life for you or someone else. Like everything its easier said than done. Just yesterday I took my power back by letting a friend know I was unavailable to them. It hurts a little to disappoint someone but it hurts a lot worse to let myself down.
A few simple things to keep in mind when you are worrying about everyone else is this: Are they worrying as much about your needs? Does this person deserve this much of your time? Is helping them preventing you from achieving other things? Will this situation drastically benefit anyone if you don’t remain true to your needs? Sometimes the only person we are letting down is ourselves in fear of disappointing others. Take a break for yourself. Take time for yourself. Remember you matter, and you deserve to be the star of your own book. Write chapters to the life that makes you happy.