These thoughts tormented me. Partly because I hope others will do the same for me. Alexandra Reinwarth shared the moment her two year old son comforted her and she realised that things needed to change. Three years later, I firmly believe that not giving a damn is something every woman should do more of. We need to be more selfish, and feel less guilty about putting ourselves first.
This is not to say that we should behave badly to those we love, but that we should care less about anyone or anything draining or needlessly time-consuming. The urge to please others is wired deep, a consequence thousands of years of evolution. Better not mess it up with them. Of course, 10, years ago, you needed to be part of a tribe in order to survive, to fend off sabre-tooth tigers and mammoths. Women especially needed the support of other females, to protect children while you foraged or took on other chores.
Those who alienated their tribe risked expulsion and certain death.
Nowadays you can be a loner and have a perfectly good life, but wanting to be part of a community is still deeply programmed into us. She says that she firmly believes that not giving a damn is something every woman should do more of file photo.
But while I might want to inspire love and respect by pleasing others, I prefer people who say honestly, even bluntly, what they think. Who do what they deem right, even at the risk others might find them stupid. Take my childhood friend, Oli, now a successful businessman. But people still like him — and his firm boundaries mean he is rarely stressed.
But I think every woman has at least one friend she finds exhausting — yet actively finishing a friendship is almost unheard of. She says that women need to be more selfish, and feel less guilty about putting themselves first. Excluding a friend is one of the worst playground sins you can commit.
This was Catherine, who I got to know through a mutual friend.
We had a lot in common but our friendship had turned into her moaning about every aspect of her own life, whether it was her unhappy marriage, her job or her sick mother. Then one day my husband asked why I was still friends with Catherine. I realised he had a point.
Why you need to learn to be as selfish as a man: alexandra reinwarth says she’s done just that — and it’s working wonders
She says the urge to please others is wired deep, a consequence thousands of years of evolution. To simply do what seemed right for me — without considering whether the other person would still like me — was a revelation. Take the time I meet my friend Mireille for a drink and we bump into another couple I know — my friend Hannah and her handsome new boyfriend.
Hannah, meanwhile, is looking daggers at Mireille.
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Automatically, I feel guilty — as if the situation is my fault. I am not responsible for this disaster. It is another really lovely and liberating feeling: I am not always responsible. Women spend too much time worrying about what other people think.
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But we should not be afraid to antagonise others, especially at work. Until recently I was an advertising executive and one colleague, Mark, would habitually ask me to proofread his pitches, even though it was not my job. One evening, as I was about to leave, he came over with his latest request.
Mark was not cross with me, by the way. Quite the opposite.
I got the impression that he started to take everything I said and did more seriously. From then on he would only bother me with queries if it was really necessary. So without a hint of guilt I no longer invite the racist uncle everyone dislikes to family dos. I have, however, developed a more tactful approach with my mother-in-law.
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Women punished for selfish behavior
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