If You Want To Help The World, Help Yourself First

Help Yourself FirstI’ve often been touched by the frequent desire to help others I hear expressed in the sentiments of those I’ve coached. So many people have a good heart. You might often misjudge just how inclined to goodness people can actually be. The temptation to believe that the world has become a cruel place, filled with self-absorbed, self-motivated people is something that can make it seem like the best of days are already behind us. However, in my experience, most people deeply care about others.

That said, how able most people are, to help others, is an entirely different matter. Sure, we can change our social media profile pictures with a frame or overlay that supports a cause. We can send prayers or well wishes, or express outward support for people struggling. And I don’t mean to discount these things at all. At the end of the day though, these well wishes may provide emotional comfort or validation, but they don’t heal the sick, feed the hungry or stop violence from happening.

And that’s why, I’m going to throw out an idea that may well challenge your belief system. So often, we find ourselves thinking in terms of “us and them.” And the group of people we think of as “them” could be the white, male, patriarchy, or the filthy capitalists, or the “terrorists”…really, it can be anyone you may identify as the cause of the problem you’re focused on. And, there may be some truth to it, or, you may have been taught to believe in a stereotypical “identity” to rail against that is purely meant to demonize a group of people who may well not deserve the blame for the misdeed. Ultimately, we are all individuals, and asĀ  individuals, we may share some “common” characteristics, when it comes to gender, nationality, race, religion, orientation or political identity, but, we are all so much more than that. You see, the inclination is to be mentally lazy, to paint with a broad brush, and it’s very easy to write off an entire segment of people by taking the easy path, and not taking the effort to discern that people are simply people. We all have dreams, hopes, ambitions and fears, often far more in common with one another than different.

And we often want to fix the same problems, though, we may have different ideas about just how to do that.

But, if, instead of fighting one another over the typically small differences, we learn to communicate more effectively, and look to the things we share in common, I promise you, we can literally move mountains…

And what’s more, by first helping ourselves, becoming more financially productive, solving our own problems, gaining our own strength, we are more able to effect the changes we want to see in the world.

If you’d like to see businesses operate more ethically, be the person that starts a business operating on the principles you’d like to see other companies operate by. Or, create enough wealth to be an influencer.

If you’d like to see social problems solved, start finding the solutions that uplift everyone, and be the beacon of light that overcame injustice in your own life, so that you can better shine for others who may face the same problems…

What I’m really saying, is that it should be everyone’s moral imperative, to be the strongest, wealthiest, most effective version of themselves they can be.

To change the world, we must first change ourselves…we must take the narrow path of self-realization, perform the inner alchemy to refine our dross matter into gold.