Kind, empathic people often struggle with feelings of guilt when they focus on themselves. It is perhaps the most common life lesson and challenge for highly sensitive people.
Read on to learn how and why to engage in healthy self-care without guilt.
Empaths Must Learn Self-Focus
Empaths naturally and often automatically focus on the other. It’s as if your soul can see into the person in front of you. This is at the core of being a sensitive person. Your great reservoirs of compassion and intuition are a gift.
However, if you don’t learn how to balance that with self-focus, codependency is the result. This means that you are trying to please or doing things to get someone to like you, accept you, or do something for you. Healthy giving, on the other hand, is done freely and from the heart.
In addition, overly focusing on others can start to adversely affect both your mental health and physical health. If you feel guilty moving the focus from someone else back to you, remind yourself that your health (all kinds) may depend on it.
Focusing On Yourself Allows For Healthy Relationships
One of the great ironies is that in order to have healthy relationships with others, you need a solid foundation with self. Like the old adage says, you can’t pour from an empty cup. You may have learned this the hard way, or had disastrous experiences where you chronically over-gave. It is painful to realize that your kind nature or good intentions don’t always bring reciprocity from the other person.
And paradoxically, especially if you are empathic, pulling back and focusing on self gives the relationship room to grow. It brings the dynamic back into balance. Balance leads to respect. It also decreases the chances of feeling drained and resentful as a result of not getting much back.
You may feel guilty for increasing self-focus, but breathe through it. It’s still the needed course of action. Look at it as a signal that you need to get more comfortable with having high standards and taking care of yourself.
Self-Focus Protects Physical Health
One way to focus on yourself is literally taking care of your body. Practices like eating nourishing foods, exercising, deep breathing, and getting support are critical to staying well.
When you remind yourself that your health is 100 percent your responsibility and the foundation of life, your perspective can shift. It becomes crystal clear that focusing on yourself is not just OK, but needed. Guilt is not productive, and doesn’t benefit your relationships either.
Self-Love Without Guilt
In conclusion, be gentle with yourself when guilt arises. But also have strong boundaries by telling it to step aside. You don’t have to believe all your thoughts and emotions. They are often fear-based or not grounded in reality.
You truly need to have your own back in order to accomplish anything and be available for other people. A healthy self is a prerequisite for healthy relationships. It’s not selfish to focus on yourself – especially if you’re a natural giver or empath. It is indeed what attracts nearly everything else good into your life.
© Copyright Centered One by Erin, LLC. All rights reserved.