Recently, I was indulging in my version of self-care, watching Matt D'Avella's videos when I stumbled across this one - Is Self care turning you into a narcissist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ICdS3mLcaNI&ab_channel=MattD'Avella.
As with most videos, I've just put it on with no intention of applying anything to my life. See also: How to make X extremely complicated, 72 hour meal at home or makeover your entire kitchen for £120,339,293!
But then, he mentioned something along the lines of how self-care is an excuse to push friends away and I almost immediately felt called out. I was @-ed. How many times have you seen 'normalise cancelling plans when you're tired'; 'you shouldn't need an excuse to put yourself first'; the whole of 'Women don't owe you pretty' mantra. At first, it was inconceivable. I kept asking myself (and my friends) how anyone would have any friends if they treated other people like that. And then, it started creeping into my life:
- plans being cancelled because of being tired
- not turning up to something you committed to because you 'don't feel like it'
- not doing what's best for someone else because 'ultimately, you have to do you'
And what do I or the person end up doing instead? Sitting in bed watching reruns of the same tv shows, drinking alone and losing touch with life-long friends because why should I bother reaching out if they don't? I have my own shit going on too.
I'm not proposing you run yourself to the ground until you're sick or go on tolerating toxic, one-sided relationships. I just mean that maybe we're all too comfortable in our complacent little bubble hidden behind the facade of 'self-care'. Is self-care turning me into a narcisist? I don't know. But it's definitely an excuse that I use to be a lazy, unforgiving, selfish human being.