"You cannot help someone build a house when your foundation has not set". ~Me
Conceited, cocky, selfish, etc. etc. These are the words that you will most likely hear when you seem to put yourself first before everyone else. However, why is there such a negative stigma with this? My guess is, the people who are usually saying those words are typically saying them because you are refusing to do something for them. In a sense, wouldn't that make them "Conceited, cocky and selfish"?
While growing up, I was taught in my household that we need to look out for others as we look out for ourselves. We were taught to try to see the good in people and always give others the benefit of the doubt. While these were admirable lessons learned, I have received a healthy dose of reality checks as I have grown up. I have learned that "Everyone does what they want to do as long as it benefits them in some type of way".
Living in servitude to others is not necessarily a bad thing. After all, a volunteer experience can be very fulfilling as it does provide a feeling of accomplishment as well as giving back to the community. However, in this day and age, it seems like the more you give to others, the more others are willing to take. One mistake I have noticed that people constantly trying to improve others by doing things for other people and neglecting themselves.
The problem with this that I have identified is that this typically results in one going without while making sure that others have. For example, how can you pay for someone else's gas but not have enough gas to get yourself to work? It is my experience that the best way to improve others is to work on improving yourself.
On my journey to improve my finances, I have implemented many changes in my lifestyle. While implementing these new changes, I have been able to spark curiosity from the people around me to ask about how I have been able to accomplish these changes. I am able to share with others my experiences and make recommendations for them based on things that have worked for me.
In addition to that, I find that whenever I have sacrificed myself on behalf of others, the end result always consisted of no change. I believe people are a lot more receptive to recommendations when they are ready to change rather than when you are ready for them to change. By allowing people to observe the positive change in your life, it may inspire them to do adopt some of those same changes.
For some recommendations on how you can improve yourself, check out my articles about Investing in your health, Investing in your knowledge, Investing in your Experience and Investing in your Future.
I believe that improving others only occurs through self-improvement, please leave your thoughts about this in the comments below.