View Full Version : Serving your own self-interest and selfishness


anonymouslyadd
06-08-15, 10:22 PM
A young man went through most of his life not caring about managing money. He would spend money without considering his future and forget about budgeting. Spending money money was a rush to him like a drug.

That young man is me.

While I work on managing my money better, I'm curious of the difference between serving your own self- interest and selfishness. Are they the same? If not, what's the difference?

I've always thought I was selfish and that thinking spilled into every area of my life. I'd like to adjust my thinking on what I need to do for myself in order to live and possibly prosper.

stef
06-09-15, 03:31 AM
There's a fine line somewhere between the two I think. I know I can be very selfish, it's one of my worst qualities.
But serving your own self interest, genuinely, to succeed and advance is an entirely different matter.

For a long time I mixed the two things up and thought that anything I wanted meant that I was being "selfish".

anonymouslyadd
06-09-15, 04:04 AM
For a long time I mixed the two things up and thought that anything I wanted meant that I was being "selfish".
How did you change your thinking? That's where I'm at, right now.

stef
06-09-15, 04:19 AM
I didn't do it consciously, just learning about ADHD and being on the forums made me more confident over the past years. I deserve nice things and a good job and I need a lot of down time so I've accepted this. And a little (affordable!) shopping on Saturdays makes me happy.

It's not the same as not liking to share, (seriously I am Joey from Friends, in restaurants), arranging things in my favor without asking others, etc.

Stevuke79
06-09-15, 05:11 AM
IMO, there is nothing wrong with being selfish. It also does not preclude being generous. We can be both.

Calling someone "selfish" in a negative way is like calling someone a "****". (I wish I had a better analogy.. it's the best one I can think of). It describes something that is natural, good and healthy, .. even necessary. But it casts it in a negative light so that you can manipulate someone into behaving the way you want them to against their own interests. "Selfish" is the same thing.

Everyone is selfish, and that's a good thing! Any immoral action that can be related to "selfishness" (that I can think of at the moment), .. it's never the selfishness that's the problem. It's always some other (actually) bad quality. (manipulation, deceptiveness, etc). But selfishness itself is never a bad thing, IMO.

Fuzzy12
06-09-15, 05:15 AM
Um..yeah, basically what Steve said :scratch:

I don't think there is a difference but I agree that being selfish isn't necessarily anything negative though at times it's difficult to find the balance between being selfish without hurting anyone else in the process and being selfish at the cost of others.

Also, keep in mind that every time someone asks yo or expects you to not be selfish for their sake they are being selfish.

Little Missy
06-09-15, 08:33 AM
BIG difference between selfish and selfless.

Little Missy
06-09-15, 08:43 AM
How did you change your thinking? That's where I'm at, right now.

You must take care of yourself first before you can do anything else.

I was very confused about this also.

Stevuke79
06-09-15, 09:20 AM
IMO, there is nothing wrong with being selfish. It also does not preclude being generous. We can be both.

Calling someone "selfish" in a negative way is like calling someone a "****". (I wish I had a better analogy.. it's the best one I can think of). It describes something that is natural, good and healthy, .. even necessary. But it casts it in a negative light so that you can manipulate someone into behaving the way you want them to against their own interests. "Selfish" is the same thing.

Everyone is selfish, and that's a good thing! Any immoral action that can be related to "selfishness" (that I can think of at the moment), .. it's never the selfishness that's the problem. It's always some other (actually) bad quality. (manipulation, deceptiveness, etc). But selfishness itself is never a bad thing, IMO.

Just to clarify this post, the censored out word rhymes with "glut"... and if a man and a woman do the same thing,.. most people will insist that you cannot apply this type of "shaming" to the man.

Just so my post makes sense.. because I think the analogy is very strong.

Unmanagable
06-09-15, 11:00 AM
I used to think tending to my own self-interests and self-preservation was a very selfish thing to do, and I'd also never been taught to put myself first, so I naturally assumed I was doing something wrong by NOT putting everyone else before myself.

I've basically spent all these years teaching others how to mistreat me by mistreating myself, instead of modeling behavior that nurtures self, by learning how to nurture myself.

It's been hell trying to unlearn all of that crap and damn well put myself first so I can be in a healthier state of mind, and to better educate others on how to treat me. There doesn't appear to be a single way to magically do it, from where I'm standing, to share the answer with others. It's a personal journey of discovery.

anonymouslyadd
06-09-15, 05:40 PM
Selfishness means to do things without considering others. I always consider others.

Little Missy
06-09-15, 06:27 PM
Selfishness means to do things without considering others. I always consider others.

Sometimes I am far too considerate of others.

Unmanagable
06-09-15, 08:36 PM
Selfishness means to do things without considering others. I always consider others.

I always consider the whole before I act. However, I also must strongly consider self prior to that action, as well, then act accordingly. Then I have to ask myself, especially when my instincts are speaking loudly, "How many people am I willing to continue to lose significant parts of self to in order to be able to better accommodate them vs. self? How's that been working for me, so far?"

And as we all know by now, not everyone perceives specific terminology at its face value by definition, so that tends to twist and trip things up even more. Our personal interpretation determines our immediate response/reaction. If we're able to make room in between the thoughts and expressions for heartfelt and genuine communication, we may luck out and create some understanding while we're at it.

anonymouslyadd
06-10-15, 12:02 AM
IMO, there is nothing wrong with being selfish. It also does not preclude being generous. We can be both.

Calling someone "selfish" in a negative way is like calling someone a "****". (I wish I had a better analogy.. it's the best one I can think of). It describes something that is natural, good and healthy, .. even necessary. But it casts it in a negative light so that you can manipulate someone into behaving the way you want them to against their own interests. "Selfish" is the same thing.

Everyone is selfish, and that's a good thing! Any immoral action that can be related to "selfishness" (that I can think of at the moment), .. it's never the selfishness that's the problem. It's always some other (actually) bad quality. (manipulation, deceptiveness, etc). But selfishness itself is never a bad thing, IMO.
Words are important and selfishness is a negative word. My major concern is the impact of thinking I'm selfish on my behavior. Is it hindering my behavior and preventing me from enjoying my life more fully?

SB_UK
06-10-15, 12:53 PM
ooooo!
I have a response.

(but I'm not too sure I should repeat it again)

The goal : Happy you when you see others happy are living happily.
[1] You're happy when others are happy
[2] As long as happy others are living happily.
[having just won the lottery is happy winner (potentially) living unhappily]

SB_UK
06-10-15, 12:57 PM
Spending money money was a rush to him like a drug.
What's the best relationship a man can have with a drug ?

I'd like to adjust my thinking on what I need to do for myself in order to live and possibly prosper.
What's the best relationship a man can have with a drug ?

SB_UK
06-10-15, 01:00 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2nq8DzYToE


ooo yeah !!

Unmanagable
06-10-15, 01:05 PM
Words are important and selfishness is a negative word. My major concern is the impact of thinking I'm selfish on my behavior. Is it hindering my behavior and preventing me from enjoying my life more fully?

I've found it's also equally important and helpful to be able to dismiss words and their meanings just as quickly as I let myself succumb to the perceived meaning. Otherwise, my few threads of sanity would be long gone by now. Negative self talk hurts on a cellular level, and I'd be willing to say in my case, even deeper than the words of others. Flipping my own personal script has been the only way around that. Making myself let go of the perceived hurts via language meanings has been a huge one to tackle, and remains an ongoing challenge, mainly because other people have a really hard time letting go, as well.

anonymouslyadd
06-13-15, 05:26 AM
You must take care of yourself first before you can do anything else.

I was very confused about this also.
Exactly, so how can the shower I'm about to take ever be considered selfish?

I believe that I need to take care of myself first, but maybe I struggle to remember that?

stef
06-13-15, 05:37 AM
I was thinkng about this thread earlier!
If i dont do the things i might consider "Selfish" i get snappy and irritable. Which is much worse for everyone than my so called selfish acts.

anonymouslyadd
06-13-15, 05:59 AM
I just hate the feeling I have about the word, Stef. I feel stuck.

Little Missy
06-13-15, 07:26 AM
Exactly, so how can the shower I'm about to take ever be considered selfish?

I believe that I need to take care of myself first, but maybe I struggle to remember that?

Yes! That is precisely the problem coupled with ADD and all, overthinking what is or isn't selfish. It took me YEARS to figure it out and remember that I must come first.

Honestly though, there are times that I still get paralyzed in thought of "selfish or not selfish..."

stef
06-13-15, 07:35 AM
this is so ironic because all of you posting here are generous and kind!

Little Missy
06-13-15, 07:38 AM
this is so ironic because all of you posting here are generous and kind!

I know!! Oh, we certainly are a bunch on here!

The selfless believe they are selfish. Rather amusing, well, it is right now anyway. Until the selfish intrusions begin again.:lol:

Little Missy
06-13-15, 07:48 AM
I just hate the feeling I have about the word, Stef. I feel stuck.

The word is annoying and worrisome!

I believe that possibly many of us have had it used to describe us incorrectly during our lives and that it sticks, running on that endless reel to reel in our heads.

Just recently the "friend"-even THAT word is problematic at times- who tells me I wear the same thing every day even though I do not, always tells me I'm self absorbed and selfish and that I don't listen...I'd let it bother me more if she wasn't 69 years old, can not hear well and twists what you have said because of it, and is one of those so overly educated persons that she has not a whit of common sense.

I think she has actually made me realize that most of what she says to describe me is patently false and I luncheon with her regularly just because I enjoy her insulting me because it isn't true. :)

anonymouslyadd
06-13-15, 08:27 AM
this is so ironic because all of you posting here are generous and kind!
I knew you loved complimenting people.:giggle::p;)

JustfixME
06-13-15, 10:54 AM
Philosophical dilemmas.......IMHO, there is nothing wrong spending tons of money on your self. But at some point the question is am I helping my love ones as well?

Stevuke79
06-13-15, 09:08 PM
Words are important and selfishness is a negative word. My major concern is the impact of thinking I'm selfish on my behavior. Is it hindering my behavior and preventing me from enjoying my life more fully?

Selfish isn't, IMO, really a negative word.

It could be that you think selfishness i bad.. and if you do, that could hinder.

anonymouslyadd
06-13-15, 10:34 PM
Selfish isn't, IMO, really a negative word.

It could be that you think selfishness i bad.. and if you do, that could hinder.
How do you define a negative word?

someothertime
06-14-15, 06:49 AM
hmmmmmm......

pose an alternative.........??? sounds pesso buuuuuuutttttt......

if this is self serving....... i'll take it over weaving a "friendly" metacognitive manipulo me mask..... ( falsety )

fin.

i guess what i'm saying is "external selfishness" is really jumped on......... metacognitive deficits alone severely limit an adders realtime objective alignment..... that is not an excuse but a praticality......

for me, as you probably are more than aware.... it's retrospect and actions / interactions so sparse from true self that makes one wonder "why i did xyz?"

example..... today i spent the day alone apart from a few brief conversations.... one in which a family member told me i didn't understand relationships ( part true, part condescfmanip ).... anyway.... on my walk...... i smiled at over 100 families, paused and helped / moved / warned..... dozens of strangers...... kids are so funny ;)........ so yeah...... many takes on this......

stef
06-14-15, 07:12 AM
i also have a problem with the whole concept as i'm an only child. Theres already a bullt in stereotype about this.

I was called spoiled in college because i got lots of mail and a care package. And while i kind of was it wasnt excessive and i worked my *ss off at school and had 2 jobs in Summer to pay for my books and spending money. Ugh more about this later.

Little Missy
06-14-15, 08:14 AM
:goodpost: Yeah, and I'm still getting the "you're just spoiled" crap.

Except I do have an exceptionally talented and intelligent brother. My parents explained it to me as that I needed special attention and help whereas he did not but that we were both given to equally.

Will someone please explain to me just exactly how DO you spoil someone?

I do not believe you can spoil a baby, a child, a person, a pet or anything else for that matter except for maybe allowing food to spoil.

It is called LOVE.

My dad was an absolutely selfless man. He probably had to be in order to deal with me and my mum.

sarahsweets
06-17-15, 04:26 AM
Being selfish or serving your own self interest as a means to better your life in a positive way is different than being selfish and self serving at the expense of others and its super tough to tell the difference. I am sure Ive confused the two before. When I have cycled due to bipolar and am in the depression phase, I am thinking of no one but me; how bad I feel, how bad life is, how others are sick of me. It does become all consuming and I know Ive shut people out but its not because I dont think they are as important as me, its just that I am so unwell mentally at the time, I can see beyond the darkness. Thats different than overlooking the needs of others, stepping on the little guy to move up in the work force, or making my kids for example, do without because mommy wants a pedicure, I dont know if I am explaining myself right but its the best I could do.