Put your oxygen mask on first.
Why do they always say that? That’s just silly. I’m a helpful person, I’m a loving parent. The last thing I’m going to do is put MY needs before those of my child or friend. If those oxygen masks drop in front of me — and I’m pretty sure they will on this flight — I’m going to help everyone in my row to get their masks on. Then, AND ONLY THEN, will I be so selfish as to put my mask on . . . . unless I pass out first.
Why do they always say that? Because helpful people and loving parents are useless to help other people if they are unconscious. And yet day after day so many of us put other people’s needs before our own so that we are no longer able to serve them well.
The people in your life — your family, your friends, and everyone else — deserve the very best of you. However, putting everyone’s needs before your own is a short-term plan at best. Eventually you wear out and become too tired or overwrought to continue. Sometimes you even come to resent the very people that you work so hard to serve.
So. . . you shouldn’t help anyone else, you should look out for yourself and no one else, right? Of course not. Even the airline know the answer to that: “Put your oxygen mask on first, BEFORE HELPING OTHERS.”
Prioritizing yourself is not selfish, it’s just like the oxygen mask thing. It is what you need to do to make sure that you can take care of those who depend on you.
Take care of yourself. Create space in your life for the things that make you whole. Do something that keeps your body strong and healthy (like Kempo). Do something that engages your mind and dissipates stress (like Kempo). Do something that enriches your soul and helps you to find the stillness, peace, and calm that can — and should — exist in your life (like Kempo).
Do this, then take care of the people in your life.
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