Life Simplified - Winner of 2013 Telly Award

Selfishness Redefined

I always tell folks to be selfish. Their automatic reaction to this is to wonder if they heard me correctly or if I’m a nutty shrink they need to ignore. Because I already know what they’re thinking, I go on to explain and to redefine what it means to be selfish.

Let you and I have an understanding first. The folks I’m talking to are decent, loving, honorable, and hard-working people. Their hearts and intentions are in a good place. So when I tell them to be selfish, what do you think they’re going to do with this “selfishness?” Exactly. Nothing. They do nothing bad with it. Only folks whose internal make-up is without value, integrity, honor, and decency are the ones who do bad with selfishness.

“Selfishness” is necessary. It is key to happiness. What I mean by selfishness is for you to take care of yourself first. Search and find what brings you joy. Find out what makes you happy and go do it. I want you to do things that rejuvinate you. Find people who make you laugh. If your selfishness brings you joy and happiness, and eventually to those you love, what’s the problem? Isn’t that the whole point?

Know happiness starts with you. It is only after you’re happy that it spreads to those you love. And it would not be possible to find happiness unless you dedicate time and effort towards making yourself happy. Since you’re one with value, NOTHING you do towards finding joy would be contrary to who you are, your value, your honor, your integrity, your decency, and all that good stuff that defines you.

So go knock yourself out! Be selfish. Rejuvinate. Find your happiness. You owe your loved ones AND they’ve been waiting on you!!

To L (wink. wink.).
To TG.

About the author

Dr. Tseday is a clinical psychologist and one of the country's leading experts in marriage, relationships, and self development. She advocates a unique and at times controversial approach to the dynamics of marriage and personal development, the necessary element for a successful relationship. Read more »


  1. Luz
    Posted 09/05/12 at 4:23 PM | Permalink

    Thank you for the wonderful article on selfishness redefined! You are an extraordinary woman! Thank you for inspiring me and motivating me.

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