Are you a priority in your own life or more of an afterthought? Do you make yourself a priority or do you put everyone else first, causing resentment and hurt feelings along the way? Do you struggle to have enough time and energy left for yourself after running around after everyone else? Making yourself a priority is important. In this post, we’re going to be looking at 10 important ways to make yourself a priority in your life.
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Let’s start with what making yourself a priority is NOT about.
Making yourself a priority is not about thinking the whole world revolves around you and no one else matters.
Making yourself a priority is not about thinking you are better than other people. It’s not about being mean or disrespectful to people. Making yourself a priority is not a big screw you to everyone else.
Now that we’ve got that covered, let’s dive into how to make yourself a priority.
Stop thinking that making yourself a priority is being selfish
All too often we think that making ourselves a priority in our lives is selfish. But it’s not.
If you think making yourself a priority is selfish, then you will struggle with feelings of guilt. Probably lots of them and that sort of guilt doesn’t help anyone. It just makes situations worse. Guilt breeds resentment and anger and erodes love and compassion.
Making yourself a priority isn’t selfish, it’s common sense. This is YOUR life after all. Your one and only precious life.
Books that can help you make yourself a priority –
- 101 Essays That Will Change the Way You Think by Brianna Wiest
- The Mountain is You: Transforming Self-Sabotage into Self-Mastery by Brianna Wiest. This is an excellent book on self-sabotage that I read recently.
- What They Forget to Teach You at School: Essential Emotional Lessons Needed to Thrive by The School of Life
Stop with the people-pleasing
When we fail to make ourselves a priority, we can become obsessed with pleasing other people.
We run around trying to keep everyone happy, wearing ourselves out and down in the process. We worry about what everyone will think if we don’t do exactly what they say when they say it.
We tie ourselves in knots trying to please everyone often with a simmering resentment lingering in the background.
If you have trouble with being a people-pleaser, I have an excellent selection of books that can help in this post – Stop Being a People Pleaser – 6 Books That Can Help
Stop avoiding responsibility
Here’s something to think about. Perhaps you don’t want to make yourself a priority in your life because that way you would be fully responsible for it.
Which means there’s no one else to blame when things go wrong. You can’t blame people for not going after what you want. You can’t use other people as excuses.
When we hand over control (and therefore responsibility), we don’t have to make the hard decisions, we just go along with other people’s decisions and choices.
The problem is that we often end up in places and situations that make us miserable. All that going along with everyone else and handing over our responsibilities to someone else has left us feeling lost. Even worse it can leave us feeling trapped.
Making ourselves a priority means being responsible for our actions.
Books that can help –
- How to Stop Feeling Like Sh*t by Andrew Owen (This is one of my all-time favorite books – and that’s saying something because I read a LOT of books!)
- The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: The CounterIntuitive Approach to Living a Good Life by Mark Manson (This is another one of my favorites. It turns self-help on its head and suggests we look at things a little differently)
Respect yourself and know what you deserve
Making yourself a priority is about respecting yourself. It’s about knowing what treatment and love you deserve. When you respect yourself you set boundaries. When you respect yourself you say no to people and things that you don’t want in your life.
With respect comes kindness. Be kind to yourself.
Often we can be kind to other people but truly horrible to ourselves. When you make yourself a priority you direct that kindness and compassion to yourself as well.
You might not be making yourself a priority because you are struggling with self-doubt. If that’s the case, I have a great course for you. The course is How to Break the Habit of Self-Doubt and Build Real Confidence by Mel Robbins. This is a CreativeLive online course that you can take at your own pace. I’ve taken this course myself and you can read my review here.
Take care of yourself to be able to take care of others
If you are a parent, you might be thinking I can’t make myself a priority, I have two kids!
While I am not in that position myself, I appreciate where that feeling is coming from. I can’t even imagine how much you have on your plate!!
But you can’t take care of others properly when you are miserable, angry, or exhausted.
You need to be there for your children and that requires patience, energy, and understanding. When you are completely drained and spent, you don’t have any of that.
You need to find a way to make yourself a priority and a big part of that is your mindset and finding time for yourself.
Take time for yourself
It’s important that you take time for yourself.
Saying yes to everyone and running around doing what everyone else wants can be exhausting when we have no time for ourselves. You might want to spend time on a hobby you enjoy, being out in nature, exercising, or spending time on reflection, reading, or journaling.
It doesn’t matter what it is as long as it’s enjoyable and you take some time out for yourself.
Make your health a priority
With our busy lives and endless commitments, our health can often fall to the bottom of our priorities. Your health might be something you put in the ‘I’ll get to that when I have time’ column.
Unfortunately, I have found out the hard way that this isn’t a good idea. While I wasn’t neglecting my health by any means, being recently diagnosed with a chronic illness has forced me to make my health a priority. I simply don’t have any other choice if I want to be able to function, work and participate in life.
The hard truth is that no matter how rich, successful, powerful, or beautiful you are if you don’t have your health you can’t fully enjoy and live your life.
When we get sick we suddenly realize just how unimportant some of the other stuff in our lives is and how incredibly important our health is!
Make YOUR health a priority.
Work on your personal growth
When you work on your personal growth, you are helping to make yourself a priority. Of course, the bonus with personal growth is that it will positively affect all the other areas of your life as well.
Personal growth covers a lot of different topics so think about what parts of personal growth interest you the most at this point in your life.
Do you want to know and understand yourself better or are you working on being more emotionally mature? Do you want to be more assertive and set better boundaries with people or do you want to improve your self-esteem?
Work out what personal growth means to you right at this moment and make yourself a priority so that you work on it.
Related posts to help with your personal growth –
- 10 Ways to Increase Your Self-Worth and Self-Esteem
- 10 Ways to Have More Confidence
- 12 Ways to Stop Feeling Inferior to Other People
Ask for help when you need it
When you make yourself a priority, you understand the importance of asking for help when you need it. Particularly when it comes to your mental and emotional health. You don’t suffer silently and expect people to know what is going on.
Instead, you proactively seek out help.
If you need help reach out to your doctor or a counselor and get the help you need. Never be ashamed to ask for help. Remember asking for help is an act of strength and courage. Be brave and get the help you need.
Know your worth
Making yourself a priority is part of having a strong sense of self-worth.
Your self-worth is your core. It’s your inner energy that radiates from within. It supports you even when life seems bleak and times are hard.
Your self-worth helps you believe in yourself even when things are challenging and it’s what pushes you out of the shadows and back into the light.
Make yourself a priority
To achieve your goals, grow as a person, and move your life forward you need to make yourself a priority.
Doing this doesn’t disadvantage anyone else, it’s more of a contract you make with yourself to give yourself the love, respect, and support that you deserve. It’s about taking care of yourself so that you can be there for the people that truly matter in your life.
You are not an afterthought in your own life, you are the priority. Start making yourself a priority and watch your life expand and grow.
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Read Next – 10 Ways High Self-Esteem and Self-Worth Have a Huge Impact on Your Life