Virtue of Healthy Selfishness: Nurturing Self-care in a Balanced Way
Positive Self Help

Virtue of Healthy Selfishness: Nurturing Self-care in a Balanced Way


Selfishness, which is conventionally frowned upon, is now being ascribed to a healthy dimension of personality by the optimistic group of psychologists as they recognise that a tinge of “healtAhy selfishness” enhances the psychological well-being of individuals. In this column, get yourselves ready to explore the significance of healthy selfishness and its contribution towards a meaningful and balanced life.

Related: Self-Care vs. Selfishness: Understanding the Fine Line

Puzzling out healthy selfishness

Healthy selfishness is a psychological construct that deals with a person’s “health, growth, happiness, joy and freedom”. It is a phenomenon, which supports an individual’s desire for self-care by simultaneously acknowledging others’ well-being.

“Any pleasure that does no harm to other people is to be valued”


So is healthy selfishness, which does not shove off the emotions of others by demonstrating egocentric behaviour it rather, potentially identifies the essence of self-care whilst delivering responsibilities and maintaining human ties. Healthy selfishness emphasises on aligning the beads of personal needs with social obligations. In a nutshell, healthy selfishness is a platform where individuals display self-love and growth, without sabotaging others, that not only complements them with a quality life but also with a content soul.

Compass of healthy boundaries

What a fence to a herd of sheep is a healthy boundary to a balanced personality. How the fence protects sheep from getting lost so does healthy boundaries safeguard individuals from getting off track in life’s maze. A boundary is an individual’s orbit which collides if invaded. Similarly, healthy boundaries connote “befitting behaviours”, which withers away if encroached.

Healthy boundaries are the avenues for blooming relationships. Identification and nourishment of healthy boundaries are central to healthy selfishness. Establishing healthy boundaries not only paves the way for individuals to elucidate adequate and inadequate behaviours among their personal and social associates but also aids them in obstructing burnout.

Related: Importance of Healthy Boundaries in a Relationship

Individuals who maintain healthy boundaries comparatively live a more productive life as they build authentic relationships through well-articulating their needs, likes, and dislikes; in contrast, the absence of healthy boundaries leads to obnoxious and toxic relationships.

Boon companions of healthy selfishness

Mental health, autonomy, empowerment, and self-respect are a few of the intimate acquaintances of healthy selfishness. These are the stepping stones of healthy selfishness that provide space for individuals to reflect on one’s self and their priorities. They foster personal growth, compassion, joy, and freedom of individuals that strengthen their psychological well being the key attribute of efficient blooming.

Related: The Importance of Consistency in Personal Growth

These aspects help individuals understand the importance of one’s self, its possibilities and limitations most essentially during the challenging times and hard knocks. The elements of healthy selfishness allow individuals to embrace themselves and work towards a better version of themselves, which does not only benefit healthily selfish individuals but also the people around them.

Strength of healthy selfishness

One of the components that strengthens healthy selfishness is “the art of saying no”. It is essentially the ability to decline something or someone’s appeal, when required, based on one’s limitations and priorities, which means those who are healthily selfish do not repudiate every plea instead, they analyse their capacity to fulfil their commitment(s) with all their limitations.

Related: Understanding Commitment and How to Maintain It

Declining someone’s request legitimately, helps healthily selfish individuals to refrain from overburdening themselves. Contrarily, healthily selfish beings invest into endeavours that enhance their vigour, meet their personal values and accomplish their set goals.

Healthy selfishness is an essential tool to strike a balance and live a meaningful life. It is an outlook that determines the importance of self-care, personal boundaries, and psychological well-being without being oblivious to the needs of others.

By pursuing healthy selfishness, individuals create a harmonious life that not only benefits them or their immediate connections but also to the community at large. In a world where sacrificing is oftentimes held higher than taking care of others, be assured that taking care of oneself is not being selfish; rather, it is the cornerstone of a flourishing and resilient life.

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