When we hear the term ‘Selfishness’, we immediately think of selfish people that are out there to hurt others. It’ safe to say no one likes selfish person.

But there’s a big difference between POSITIVE and NEGATIVE SELFISHNESS. 

Positive Selfishness is about putting yourself first, in a good way. You make sure your needs are MET first so that you can give to others (and meet their needs).

Positively Selfish people are people we all admire. Subtle confidence, powerful image. A CEO everyone looks up to. A manager that guides and mentors his team. A parent whose children grow up in a secure, loving and stable home.

Lack of positive selfishness can be observed in people who are people-pleasers. People-pleasing is often associated with Social Anxiety and/or Worry. Another sign of people-pleasing is the inability to be assertive in life.

If we lack positive selfishness, we always put other people’s needs first, even to our own detriment. If other people don’t do the same for us, we feel resentful and sad, which causes our self-confidence to plummet even further.

What is Positive Selfishness?

Positive Selfishness is putting your own needs first, without hurting others. You need to IDENTIFY your needs and then NURTURE THEM, so that you’re emotionally and physically fulfilled. Give to yourself until you overflow. Only then you can give and look after others.

How Do You Start Being Positively Selfish?

First of all, recognize the situations you need to work on and change. In which situations do you put others’ needs first?

Is it at work? In personal life?

It could be something as simple as saying ‘no’ to people more often.


Each time you are asked to do something (if you’re a people-pleaser, you will be guilty of immediately offering to shoulder other people’s responsibility), ask yourself:

‘What’s in it for me?’

In other words:

‘How will I benefit if I do this? Is this taking me away from something I need to do for myself?’

This may seem like negatively selfish thing to do. BUT IT ISN’T.

If you don’t start putting yourself first, you won’t be able to look after yourself properly, both mentally and physically.

6 Assertive Ways Of Saying *NO*– Practice Positive Selfishness:


Don’t feel guilty about looking after your needs first.

This is to ensure you’re emotionally and physically healthy to look after and do things for others.

Remind yourself you NEED to put yourself first.

*Are you guilty of people-pleasing? Do you neglect your own needs?

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