Is it selfish?

Whenever I help someone, I am very happy and proud that I did it. I don’t tell people I helped someone, but, inwardly I am proud and therefore not humble. Isn’t that selfish? Yes, I helped someone, but, I did it both to help them and for personal gratification.

Generosity is one of the four directions in the Circle of Courage:

https://www.reclaiming.com/content/aboutcircleofcourage

10-96

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But if they are happy that they were generous, is it selfishness?

No I don’t think this is selfish in the way that you think. The very fact that you do it to help and that helping gives you a sense of gratification to do so, speaks of how unselfish it really is.

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This is a problem I have struggled with for years. I help someone, get happy about it, and then feel guilty that I didn’t do it JUST for them.

Maybe look at it a little differently. Doing something that feels good, for the right reasons, usually with the right results is a win win for everyone. If we didn’t get some sort of ‘reward’ or pleasure from the act then we would not keep doing it. Maybe it’s feeling happy that makes you feel guilty as we don’t always feel like we deserve it.

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I guess it all comes from feeling like I am inherently evil and can do no good.

That’s low self-esteem talking. Kick it to the curb where it belongs.

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It’s OK to feel good about helping someone. It evens out. If you put EFFORT into helping someone and it works than you are giving more than you are getting and thus deserve to be rewarded a little for your effort. Don’t you think that after your crisis last night that some of us felt a little good for helping you? It was all about you, but when I saw my name mentioned in your list of "thank-you’s’ I felt a little good. Why shouldn’t YOU feel the same when YOU help someone?TRULY evil people want to hurt people not help them. You can’t say you are inherently evil if you are not hurting anyone and you help people. That’s doing GOOD. You’re just a little insecure. And I hate to say it but I can get that way too.

She knows what she’s talking about.

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I would try not to look too much into it tbh. You where not well the other day and that would effect your thoughts on it… Try not to be so hard on yourself also.

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@samples32 I think you are an exceptionally nice person. Just need more attention to getting your meds tweeked a bit I think? or are you feeling stable now?

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Everything we do - be it good or bad - elicits some sort of emotional response in us. You’re not a plank of wood - you’re human, you have emotional responses. Imagine feeling nothing after you’ve done a good deed? I’d say that would be weirder than feeling happy or proud.

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I think there is still more tweaking to be done.

@77nick77 you make a very valid point and I am very grateful for your efforts, and WANT you to feel good about it! So I suppose I should too!

Simple answer is: No it is not a selfish act. Don’t be bothered on it much. Your act is not a selfish act. This is just a kind of reminding yourself that you will keep doing good with people.

Be proud but don’t be arrogant. There is a very thin line between these two. Being proud means you are respecting what you are doing and in fact you are encouraging others to do the same. While arrogance is about eliminating respect from your deed. You do good only if there is someone to appreciate that; that’s arrogance.

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Selfish is when you don’t help someone because there’s nothing in it for you. Proud is when you feel pleased you are not having the problem they’re having. Satisfied is when you are happy to be able to help but you keep in mind that other people also help you. That’s an essential human attribute. Without it there would be no communities. So, I think you are pleased you could help and that’s good,not bad.

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Feeling good with yourself because you were kind and helpful is a very natural reaction…

Did you know that doing nice things for others boosts your serotonin? Serotonin is the neurotransmitter that gives us the feeling of satisfaction and well-being. Most of the anti-depressant medications work by increasing the amount of serotonin available to your brain. All of this means that doing nice things for other people changes your brain in ways that make you feel better.

It feels great to help others… That smile you get from someone when you came to the table with the perfect answer or the just in time help… it feels amazing.

I love those smiles.

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You know, your response was the one that I was most eager to read. You are always so good at making people smile.

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:blush: Thank you for that…

I like to help too.

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They say that one of the differences between psychopaths/sociopaths and others is that for most of us, doing good deeds like helping, sharing and so forth release serotonin/oxytocin - giving us that ‘good’ feeling. So, it’s actually a chemical reaction that can’t be avoided and is a normal and healthy thing to experience.

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