022: Feeling Selfish for Taking Care of Our Needs – A Talk with Eve Laurén


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Sharing the struggle of honouring our needs and keeping others happy in the process.

Feeling selfish for taking care of our needs.
Eve summoning her inner honey badger

I met Eve at OM Power Yoga. She is my Yoga teacher. Her classes are fun, spontaneous and not afraid to flow in a different direction.

Her studio offers much more than your average dose of downward dogs. In just a few months it has organically evolved into a thriving social hub with regular after class chai-time and spontaneous hangouts quickly becoming the norm. Eve’s dynamic and ever-flowing energy has been a cornerstone of this evolution.

Her own evolution has been far from average. Following a period of intense accidents Eve decided to make some changes in her life – to start making decisions for herself from a place of love instead of fear.

In the later half of this episode we dive into why it feels so difficult to take care of our needs around other people and share some practical tips that make this process easier – resulting in our needs being taken care of and others feeling respected.

Show Highlights and Takeaways

  • Everyone is going through some kind of struggle.
  • Sonder: the realisation that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own. (definition via The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows)
  • Some of our earliest childhood memories are what shape us.
  • We can have limiting core beliefs based on these memories. These beliefs affect how we think, feel and act.
  • The act of giving to others can come from a place of fear; giving in order to feel liked and accepted.

When you base your life out of fear (or anything other than your heart and your truth) the universe will keep giving you signs to come back to your truth.

  • We can always choose to act from a place of love (compassion, connection with ourselves and others) instead of a place of fear.
  • We can all connect with our inner Honey Badger – Honey badger is badass. Honey badger don’t care.

Taking Care of Your Needs Around Other People

  • Be honest with the other person about your needs.
  • However they might not understand where you’re coming from. They may not have experienced waking up to the fact that we can be whoever we want to be, not just the person we are told we should be.
  • Simply trying to explain what you need and how you’d like to take care of yourself may be threatening to someone who hasn’t seen that as a possibility for themselves.
  • Part of living your truth is letting go of the things which do not serve you. It can be difficult to let go (of people) but it always opens the door for new connections and new possibilities to come into your life.

Choosing the Option Which Serves You Best

  • (scenario) I’m at my friends birthday party. I’m tired and have to wake up early tomorrow for work.
  • Option A: If I leave the party my friend will be unhappy and wonder what’s going on, but I’ll feel good for taking care of my needs and getting enough sleep.
  • Option B: If I stay at the party there won’t be a problem with my friend but I won’t be able to enjoy myself because I know I should be at home sleeping.
  • Tip: Flip a Coin You can find out what it is you truly want if you get the side of the coin you didn’t want.
  • If you’re having trouble connecting with what you truly desire, what you truly want, you’re probably overwhelmed by the outcomes of the options you have. Basing our decisions on the possible outcomes of a decision isn’t always the best way to make a decision. Focusing on the outcomes can bring our past conditioning to the table with our old responses and can lead to us overthinking things. You’ve got to under-think it. Go with your immediate response.
  • Try on the different decisions and see how they feel. Choose the one that feels immediately right to you.
    • “I am leaving the party…”
    • “I am staying at the party…”
  • Deep down we always know what we want. Our bodies always know.

The Gift Belongs to the Giver Until It Is Taken

  • There was an angry man who went to the Buddha, “What gives you the right to give these teachings? You think you’re better than us, you’re just a lazy man!”The Buddha asked, “If you gave me a gift and I didn’t want it so I didn’t take it from you – then who does the gift belong to?”The man replied, “Well it belongs to me. It’s my gift I bought it.”“If you deliver me anger and I don’t want it, then who does it belong to?”
  • Our feelings belong to us, other people’s feelings belong to them.

Some Final Tips

  • Tip: Repeating our needs in a calm and non-reactive way to someone who isn’t accepting our originally stated needs is a good way to respectfully let the person know you’re sincere about taking care of your self without fuelling their fire.
  • Tip: Imagine the worst case scenario – what’s the worst thing that will happen if you upset someone by taking care of your needs?

Mentioned in this Episode

The Podcast

The B is for Being Podcast is a collection of conversations with friends, psychologists, and thought-leaders on the most effective tools for uncovering authentic expression and navigating the obstacles we may encounter on the way to discovering ourselves.

About Benjamin

Hi, I’m Benjamin. I podcast and blog about authentic expression and self-discovery. I also make slow-videos for rest and reflection. You can read more about me here.

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