You may strive to help everyone around you, sincerely believing that this makes you a good person. But the harsh truth is that your help is often pointless and, in some cases, even goes to your detriment.
If you’re too often solving the problems of those around you, wanting to make them happy, it’s time for you to slow down. The habit of rushing to everyone’s rescue and taking responsibility for other people’s moral state is detrimental to your own life, especially if you don’t know your limits.
Realizing that you’re doing something wrong isn’t that difficult. In most cases, the most obvious sign is a lack of energy. You spend all your resources trying to help other people, and you are woefully short of time and energy for yourself. You have to deprive yourself, forget about your desires and needs, and ignore your emotions.
We have gathered a few reasons why you should never sacrifice your happiness for the sake of other people, even your loved ones.
1. You won’t be able to make the person happy
The most basic reason why you shouldn’t waste your resources trying to fix someone else’s life is that you won’t succeed anyway. No one but the person can make himself or herself happy. You can give as much advice as you want about what to do in a specific situation, help solve his problems, and offer him your time, money, and moral and physical support, but it won’t lead to the desired result. The person himself should want to stop feeling sorry for himself and do at least something to feel better.
You have probably tried to help your loved ones more than once. Their inaction makes you angry most of the time: you don’t understand why they don’t change anything if they are not happy with their lives.
So here’s a thought to think about: maybe they are comfortable in the place and with the problems they have now. They keep voicing their dissatisfaction, but they don’t want to change things deep down. No amount of you trying to get things moving will succeed unless the person wants to initiate change.
2. An adult is responsible for himself or herself
Remember one rule: Adults are always responsible for themselves. You can’t just accuse someone else of being unhappy. Instead of shifting the blame, you might try to change something in your life. Don’t take that opportunity away from others either. Let them complain enough to you, help them with advice if they ask for it, but never get involved with your help.
Your parents, siblings, friends, and loved ones – their happiness does not depend on you and your actions. If they are not happy with something, they have the right to change it. If they don’t want to change it themselves, they don’t need to. There is no point in making up lots of excuses for your loved ones, and you don’t have to make sacrifices to make them happy.
3. This is not the way to earn love
You may often sacrifice your happiness for the sake of the people you love. But you may do so with a selfish motive: you hope that you will earn their love in this way.
If this is the case, try to get rid of this negative attitude as soon as possible. You can’t earn love because grown-ups don’t love for anything; they just do. Love doesn’t need any conditions.
If you are trying to earn the love and respect of people around you by your actions and are even ready to go through some hardships for it, you need to work with your self-esteem. There is a good chance that it is low. Once you’ve got your self-esteem in order, people will look at you in a new light.
4. You have to think of yourself first
You can argue with this as much as you like, but everyone should think about themselves first and only after that about the people around them. This is healthy egoism, the basis of normal self-esteem, a prerequisite for achieving harmony with oneself.
As soon as you start putting other people’s needs and interests first, they take advantage of you. You spend an enormous amount of resources trying to make someone else happy. At the same time, you get burned out pretty quickly because you don’t do anything pleasing to yourself. That means that you have no place to derive your energy and positive emotions from.
5. You run the risk of becoming a victim
If you are constantly abandoning your needs, desires, and goals to make your family and friends happy, you may end up in a position of victimization for a long time. Instead of solving your problems, getting your life in order, and taking responsibility for your emotions, you will stomp around in the same place. You’ll convince yourself that you spent all your resources on other people because you couldn’t do otherwise, and now you have to put up with the inconvenience.
But here’s food for thought: no one asked you to give up your happiness, which means you’re the only one to blame for the consequences of your decision. Stop shifting the responsibility for your life onto someone else. Gather your strength in your fist, and finally, start putting things in order. Next time you want to make someone else happy, be kind enough to make yourself happy first.
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6. People may start taking your actions for granted
The more often you go against yourself and your interests, hoping that it will make someone you love happier, the less appreciative the person who did this to you will be. Seriously, one day you may surprise someone and make them feel admiration and even love and respect you, but it will be an isolated incident. People very quickly begin to take your actions for granted. Soon they get so used to your behavior that they start demanding that you make decisions, not in your favor.
7. No one will do the same for you
It is unlikely that someone you love and have sacrificed for their happiness will do the same for you. First of all, if no one asked you to do this and you didn’t agree to reciprocate your actions, then essentially, no one owes you anything. As cruel as it sounds, you shouldn’t have hoped that someone would put up with deprivation and give up a comfortable life just to make you feel good. You are merely the exception to the rule.
Secondly, you would not have asked your family and friends to do so. You would hardly be able to live peacefully knowing that someone dear to you has gone against himself to make you happy. Instead, it would cause you to feel guilty, and you would do everything you could to change the person’s mind and make them do what they had initially planned.