Putting Yourself First

22 Jun 2021

I was born with a great disability; I can see every side of an argument.

I’ve been told this is because I have Libra rising in my star sign – or is it my moon sign? I forget; but whatever the reason, it really gets in the way.

Just last week, the managers of our company announced a change in policy. Some of my colleagues are up in arms about it, and I can see why: they feel badly treated. When, however, I look at it from the managers’ point of view, I see the logic and the business sense, even inevitability, about their decision.

When it came to appointing a representative from our family to negotiate a sticky situation within the wider family, I was the obvious choice. If I cannot keep the peace, at least I can be the peace, and I can explain the way each person feels to the others. I hope it helps. At least nobody has fallen out to the extent of not speaking, so that has to count for something, I suppose.

But it comes with a price. I feel torn in a dozen different ways. I am accused to taking both sides, and lectured by friends about not standing up for myself. “You look out for everyone else,” they say, “but you don’t look out for yourself.”

I see their point. Well, of course I do!

One of pieces of advice St Paul gives in his letter to the Romans is, “So far as it depends on you, live in peace with everyone.” This is great advice but, carried to extremes, it means avoiding confrontation and subsuming one’s own needs to those of others.

In my professional life, I have no problem with being assertive. Setting my business hours and holding firmly to those hours (ahem, with some exceptions) has been a habit well worth cultivating. Looking after myself in my personal life is not so easy.

This depressive episode is now in its fifth week; day 33 (sigh). I am finally listening to all those people who tell me to rest. Hey – I’m even listening to myself: do you remember the blogs I wrote a couple of weeks ago?

So, yesterday, I sat in a chair all morning, just reading. I slipped up by offering to take my younger daughter to the bus station, but she took one look at me and said, with some brutality, that I didn’t look well enough to drive. I slept all afternoon.

Today, after writing this blog, rinse and repeat.

The needs and views of everyone else are on hold.

What are your own views and needs? Do you see the argument from all sides but your own? Do you subsume your own needs to the needs of others? And, at what price to your own well-being?

Please learn from my mistakes. I shall report back next week after I have, at last, taken advice and looked after myself first.


A Moodscope member.

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