This I Believe

Nicole - st davids, Pennsylvania
Entered on December 12, 2007

This I Believe

I believe that sometimes you have to put yourself first, even if it means upsetting someone else. For quite some time I would find myself constantly doing the work of others in an attempt to keep them happy. While I consider this to be a generous habit of mine I also found it to be the biggest burden. I would regularly find myself saying “yeah sure, no problem, I don’t mind meeting you downstairs and helping you with that paper.” Granted it is usually around three in the morning and this persons phone call has awaken me from my comfortable bed. This isn’t a rare situation either, surprisingly it happens quite often. I would find myself, more often than not, pulling all nighters on work that doesn’t pertain to me at all. It wasn’t just school work though, I also found myself staying awake until 5 am on numerous occasions just because someone needed to talk. While I constantly found excuses such as “I’m just being a good friend.” to continue this habit, I quickly found that it was taking quite a toll on me personally. Even though helping my friends made me feel good about myself I began to notice that it began to be a burden on my own school work. Being awake until 5 am and then waking up at 8 for class didn’t exactly make me the most attentive student. I still found time to get my own work done but it was not up to the standards it should have been because I was constantly overwhelmed with the needs of everyone else around me. A recent example of this would be about a week ago. With finals coming up and everyone going a bit crazy I was not surprised when friends started asking me to help them study, and obviously not yet fully learning my lesson I agree. So here I am sitting in the computer lounge helping my friend study until two in the morning. Normally, I wouldn’t mind this so much until I suddenly remembered that I myself had a test in the morning that I had absent mindedly forgotten about. Yet for whatever reason I finished helping my friend before going to start my own studying. Needless to say it was about three thirty in the morning by the time I was done doing my own work, after this particular incident it didn’t take long for me to realize that I needed to find a balance between the helping my friends and helping myself and I did so quickly. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I couldn’t continue to facilitate my friends work and chances are if they needed help that badly, they could have asked me a few hours earlier. By finding a balance between helping myself and helping others I’ve learned that I’m actually more useful. I’ve also come to terms with the fact that you can’t really help others if you don’t know how to help yourself first.