“Selfishness is that detestable vice which no one will forgive in others, and no one is without himself.” – Henry Ward Beecher
With little or no effort, we recognize the ugly effects of greed and selfishness on our society, culture, and nations. The greed of others makes this world a less pleasurable place to live for all of us. We wish they would change for the sake of everyone. In some cases, we even unify and protest to pressure them to change.
All the while, our personal greed rarely goes challenged. Recognizing the negative effects of corporate selfishness is easy. But identifying our own selfish motivation is more difficult to accomplish. It is, after all, far more painful to discover and admit. Unless you have a wakeup call.
What has selfishness been within me? Jealousy, being angry and bitter, negatively impacting relationships, high expectations, unforgiving, keeping me from experiencing love, joy, hope, gratitude, generosity and hindering me from true contentment.
I used to be one of the most unselfish people. (I am not saying I was perfect and never had selfish tendencies but 8 out of 10 times I would always put the needs of others before myself.) I would go out of my way to make someone smile, I would give my last dollar if I knew someone needed it, I would give without expectations but that all changed for some reason.
I lost sight of how being selfless made me feel. I was content, happier, giving, lovable, had little to no expectations, I was grateful for people in my life and my life. I hate what happened to me! I suppose I was wallowing in self-pity and I became stuck in the quicksand.
I no longer want to live a selfish life nor will I hold on thinking a kind act done owes me one in return. Every day I will give out love, hope, joy, forgiveness, and gratitude. It’s taken me some time to see this but I am really starting to believe in the energy that you give out comes back to you. Plant the seed and watch it grow. Smile and be thankful.
May we refuse to overlook the importance of selflessness. Instead, may we choose to pursue selflessness as the very means to achieve happiness—not just for our own sake, but for the sake of those we choose to love.
“There is nothing more beautiful than someone who goes out of their way to make life beautiful for others.”