Why Putting Yourself First Does Not Make You Selfish [VIDEO]

Even though you hate admitting it, the undeniable truth is that you are overwhelmed. As a busy woman, wife, mom, daughter, girlfriend, volunteer, sister, friend, and more... who can blame you for feeling this way?  

When you're working really hard, stress comes with the territory. It's normal to feel tired, overloaded or even foggy. It's also normal to gain weight, lose weight, drink too much, smoke too many cigarettes, miss your friends, miss your kids, miss your family and more.  

And given that you're reading this post, we know you're also a woman of the Internet.  So you ALSO likely know that practicing self love would solve a lot of your problems. The simple answer is that  coming out of a time of feeling overwhelmed in your life starts by making yourself a #1 priority.  BUT doing this, in light of all of your responsibilities can feel like you're stuck climbing Mt. Everest.

But, it is the only way out.

Let us set the scene for you. How many times have you turned down taking a lunch break because you were afraid of not getting something done?  Or missed drinks with friends because you needed to get home to handle something with your kids? Or turned down a massage from your sweetie because you had "one more thing to do".  We get it, setting aside time for yourself isn't as easy as seems when you're juggling so many responsibilities.

But that's what makes it crucial that you put yourself first. Figuring out how you can do that successfully is the trick.

How do you relax without feeling like you’re disregarding your responsibilities?

Making time for yourself is super hard, especially when you're worried about letting other people down. But if you go through your daily activities with that mentality, you'll never truly experience life.

Gretchen Ruben of the Happiness Project once said, "The belief that unhappiness is selfless and happiness is selfish is misguided. It's more selfless to act happy. It takes energy, generosity, and discipline to be unfailingly lighthearted, yet everyone takes the happy person for granted. No one is careful of his feelings or tries to keep his spirits high. He seems self-sufficient; he becomes a cushion for others. And because happiness seems unforced, that person usually gets no credit.” 

Can you honestly say that you're perfectly fine with missing out on all of the beautiful moments in your life?

If your answer is a resounding no, keep reading. Because we know how important this is, we asked our experts to weigh in.

Author John Gray, YourTango's Senior VP Melanie Gorman, Divorce and Breakup Coach Lindsey Ellison, International Dating and Love Life Coach Suzanne Muller-Heinz and Emotional Intelligence Renee Jain  tackle the age old misconception that being practicing self love is wrong and debunk it, myth by myth. They stress that it's vital that you must take care of yourself first instead of putting others' needs before your own.

At 2:25, Renee Jain makes the distinction between self love and being selfish. Selfishness, she says, is "depleting from the people around you and I think it disconnects you. When you're being self loving and nurturing and giving to yourself, it allows you to connect better with other people. I think it's very important [that] we teach this to our kids. There's a big difference between giving to yourself and being in yourself."

If there's one thing that you take away from this message, it's the fact that you must get rid of your fear of saying no. Being a "Yes man" will leave you than more headaches than it's worth. It's all about reacquainting with your own goals and beliefs. That's the only way that you can successfully nurture your body and mind.