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On Being Selfless


bellbottoms

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Being selfless is hard. Even when I think I am being selfess it turns out I'm really being selfish.

For example, I might not want to see certain people sometimes. Mostly that is because of how ashamed I am of myself. And because I feel that way, I think nobody would be interested in seeing me and thus I might as well spare people from my presence.

But, I am aware that it might also come off as rude. I shouldn't be so focused on myself, I should be more 'out there' just to show others that I am interested in them. That would be the selfless and selfsacrificing thing to do. But the thing is, the belief that I am not interesting or worth anything is very deeply rooted so although I know how I should behave on a conscious level, it is my core belief that I simply do not matter.

The few people left in my life may say it's in my head and other kind things. It is true this core belief has resulted in me becoming very alone because I haven't always had the awareness I have now. But to me, it is a truth that no clichés can pierce through because experience has taught me this. Without playing the blame game I know it's mostly me that is responsible but I will not call it my fault because when I was a child I didn't know of the importance of social codes, taking initiatives and that. I was just me, blissfully unaware there was anything wrong with me at all. Thinking I probably didn't matter was the most natural thing in the world to me, always has been. I was told to speak up in class, but why should I have when I never had anything of interest to say? Or if somebody else can answer a question why should I? I was told to participate more but nobody ever told me why, nor did I have the sense to ask why. Now I'm older and wiser and know why, but back then I wasn't.

But I digress...

I am often conflicted. I want to be selfless and risk my pride showing interests in other people. But I'm so very afraid of being judged. You'd think that at this point in my life nothing matters, but it's a constant internal battle between the two alternatives. I want to protect myself but from what? I become increasingly dead inside so what do I have to lose, right?

But that pesky core belief, that I don't matter.. It's very real.

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Somebody taught you that you didn't matter. You didn't think that up all by yourself. There is an old proverb that says something about a child being a blank paper that every person he/she encounters leaves a mark.

Welcome to the blogs!

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Somebody taught you that you didn't matter. You didn't think that up all by yourself. There is an old proverb that says something about a child being a blank paper that every person he/she encounters leaves a mark.

Welcome to the blogs!

I'm not so sure if anybody ever taught me that. At least not any particular person and not deliberately. It's honestly kind of a mystery to me where these thoughts came from and how it started but I think I owe it mostly to a general over-sensitivity. People go through a lot worse and don't develop the same thought patterns.

But you're definitely right about the blank-paper thing. It's not always one major thing that leaves a mark but several small ones over time. And I think its great there's this blog function, it's a good place to be more open with your thoughts.

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Random thought, but I'd argue that "selfless" is not the opposite of "selfish". When you talk about showing interest in other people, you're still making a mental distinction between you (self) and them (outside self). A selfless conversation is an open exchange of ideas and feelings, and not about any particular person (self).

Perhaps I've been reading too much about Zen?

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