Get Over Yourself For A Change!

Illustration by Donna Fonx

 

In this day and age of social media-enabled narcissism where our Insta feeds and Facebook walls alike are filled with snippets of what we did/ate/saw/heard/et cetera-ed that day, one could say that we’re starting to love ourselves a bit too much.

While we’re all for self-love, as our homeboy Aristotle had once said, there is virtue in the golden mean. Translation: ease up on the selfies, people.


Think about it, when was the last thing you did something for someone else’s benefit besides your own? It doesn’t have to be something big—maybe you paid homage to the Pay-It-Forward movement, or you passed someone your parking coupon with half an hour left on its timestamp. Or maybe you simply just gave a stranger a compliment and sent them off their merry way, buoyed by unexpected but nevertheless appreciated flattery.

In any of the scenarios, while what you did was of importance, what you were doing takes on an even greater significance. Confused? Bear with me. When you do something that benefits others, what you’re essentially doing is passing on a tidbit of positivity where hopefully, the receiver would be compelled to do the same to someone else around them. And the beneficiary of that little bit of goodness may be spurred on to do something nice for someone else, creating a cycle of positivity.

Think of the last time you made someone else smile—didn’t you feel better about yourself at the same time? As funny as it is, doing something for others can make you even happier than you would be if your actions had only benefitted yourself— unless you’re an inherently selfish person (in that case, stay far, far away).

 

You don’t have to aim to dramatically alter someone’s life—start small! There are tons of things you can do to affect people that doesn’t have to involve charity. Take Liam Martin, for example. His ridiculously funny (and accurate) sartorial parodies drive home this message to every self-conscious teen out there: you shouldn’t be afraid to be different. Clichéd, yes, but honestly, when you have the balls to put spaghetti on your head or smear something unidentifiable on your teeth, and post it for 1,534,128 people to see, you can be as clichéd as you want, honey. We aren’t advocating that you replicate the next red-carpet look with crepe paper and instant noodles and run through Orchard Road screeching “BE YOURSELF!” at unsuspecting tweens and teens alike, but you get our drift. You could start with writing notes of appreciation for the people around you, or even just buy a friend that’s having a bad day a hot cuppa—whatever works for you! Baby steps.

So let’s go down the checklist: it takes just a little bit of effort to make yourself and someone else feel good, and that little bit of effort might potentially have a positive domino effect. So maybe, just maybe, you should get over yourself for a change, for a change.