Always Expect Others to Do What's in Their Own Best Interest

Updated: Aug 2

Years ago, when I was in high school, my best friend's dad told me a rule he lives by and it's always stuck with me. The rule states "Always expect others to do what's in their own best interest."

I have never been partial to people or strangers or giving anyone the benefit of the doubt just for the hell of it, so the statement did not strike me as odd. I actually agreed with the statement for the most part. The older I become and the more interactions I had with people, the more the statement popped into my head and resonated with me.

I want it to resonate with you too. I want you to be the person who does what is in your best interest.

I’m a huge proponent of self-care and this statement is something to incorporate as a daily mantra. A part of self-care is to do for oneself. Spending time with oneself and catering to the needs of oneself first. I think people underestimate how important this is.

When I think of how I practice self-care, I know that I fully do things that are in my best interest. That is not to say I do things that are hurtful or harmful to others. That simply means I do what I want because it pleases me.

Always expect others to do what's in their own best interest.

I want to use this statement to encourage you to focus on yourself and what makes you happy. Please spend some time learning yourself, your triggers, what makes you happy, and what makes you upset. Focus on obtaining the things and spending time doing the things that make you happy. Spend less time engaging with the things and people that interrupt your happiness.

Please do not entertain things that do not benefit you or bring you joy. Do not sacrifice your happiness for comfort, for peace of mind, for anyone or anything. Your happiness is important. Your boundaries are important.

Always expect others to do what's in their own best interest.

Why should you not do what's in your best interest? Do not think of this as a selfish act. Do not think prioritizing yourself makes you selfish. It's necessary and makes you human. There is nothing wrong with being kind and doing kind things for others but not at the extent of doing injustice to yourself. Not at the extent of causing yourself unhappiness for the sake of being kind to others.

Doing what is in your best interest looks different for everyone. Again, spend some time with yourself, figuring out what that looks like for you. For me, doing what's in my best interest looks like setting boundaries with people so that I am respecting myself and being at peace. I make a habit of not doing things and surrounding myself with people that will upset or irritate me.

Doing what's in my best interest also looks like spending time alone. Some people are social and super extroverted, I am not. To keep my sanity I need time alone and moments of silence with myself. I try to be social only when I feel like it, when I feel the authentic urge to be social, not forcing myself to be social for the sake of pleasing others.

Be the person who does what is in your best interest. Do it without guilt, shame, or regret.

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