I was sitting in the airport before my flight and couldn’t stop noticing that people were doing whatever they wanted without considering the large amount of people around them. I understand that running errands and travelling causes a lot of stress and people want to take care of themselves during, but what happened to common courtesy and consideration of others?
A lot of this stems from entitlement, and unfortunately, many use self care as an excuse to ONLY focus on themselves at the expense of others. People are literally attacking and killing each other because of their entitlement on a daily basis. I’m all for #TeamIDGAF, but some people can take it too far sometimes.
It is possible to take care of yourself and put yourself as a higher priority without making others uncomfortable.
In fact, being considerate of others is essential to having a healthy mind. Possessing empathy and being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes is powerful.
Plus, a bad first impression can speak volumes. You never know who you’ll run into again, and if your offense is large enough, people will remember. It really is best for your wellbeing and for others’ if you consciously choose to be considerate.
Here are 5, simple tips on how to achieve that:
1. Recognize how much space you occupy
One thing that always surprises me is a that so many people have no clue how much space they occupy. I’m not talking about necessary space based on your size. I’m talking about making yourself bigger at the expense of others.
You’ve seen it before. People who sit with their legs so wide that it encroaches on your space. Or people who walk in the middle of the sidewalk and expect you to step to the side.
There are countless other examples of not being considerate of others’ space. If you notice that you’re clearly making someone uncomfortable with the amount of space you’re taking up, please consider adjusting.
No one is required to make themselves as big as possible unless they’re in a face off with a dangerous wild animal. Not a bus or plane seat.
It’s understandable if you do this from time to time, but make a conscious effort to unlearn this if you do this regularly.
2. Recognize how loud you’re being in a crowded space
It amazes me how LOUD people can get in public, especially in waiting areas or lines.
As soon as humans are done being toddlers, they begin to really develop empathy and recognize their surroundings, so they cry less and adhere to social cues more.
If you’re reading this, chances are you’re not a child, so there really is no excuse for not being considerate of others’ ears.
When asked what the biggest annoyance is when it comes to phone etiquette, an overwhelming amount of people responded with being forced to listen to others’ phone conversations. It’s almost impossible to tune out phone conversations, especially when the person talks as loudly as humanly possible in a close proximity to you.
Also, when you’re on the phone, people can only hear one side of the conversation. It’s not a natural or normal thing for humans to endure. We’re built to interpret conversations in their entirety, so when it’s one sided it becomes irritating.
Same thing goes for watching videos without headphones in an occupied space. You may be watching a cute video of your niece at her birthday party, but all anyone can hear are screaming children and a badly sung “Happy Birthday.”
All you need to do is excuse yourself. If you must talk on the phone, try to do it at a moderate voice level or remove yourself from the area.
Want to listen to your music or watch videos? No one else does, so bring some headphones with you, or refrain until you leave the area. No media is worth acting like a child over.
3. Recognize how you treat service employees
This is HUGE, especially as Millennials and Generation Z enter the workforce.
Service industry jobs are often people’s first jobs ever. Today, it’s not uncommon for people to make a career out of it.
Working in the service industry can already be a blow to people’s well-being as expectations for employees are going up while wages remain stagnant.
When you make minimum wage, tips are absolutely essential. Don’t make a service employee’s job harder by acting entitled and denying them an appropriate tip because they didn’t completely kiss your ass. Yes, they are there to serve you, but you don’t need to be rude about it.
Again, it seems like children are better at recognizing social cues like saying “please” and “thank you” more so than adults sometimes.
You never know someone’s situation. They could be having an awful day, or are tired from working multiple jobs or going to school simultaneously.
I’ve personally made it a rule to not befriend or date people who treat service employees badly. It says A LOT about someone who thinks they can treat someone as lesser than them. Treat service employees well no matter what. Have compassion. Too often people confuse self care with no longer needing to be considerate of others. Don’t fall into the trap of feeling entitled after placing yourself as a priority. Here are five, simple tips on how to practice empathy, compassion, and consideration while practicing self care.
4. Recognize how you treat your friends and family
It seems that the people who get hit the hardest when people start their #selfcare journey are friends and family. Self care doesn’t mean dropping off of the face of the Earth or ignoring your loved ones.
If you are a chronic flaker, be honest about it. It’s better to be honest that you need to take care of yourself than lie about your reasoning. Someone was thinking about you and personally invited you to do something with them. Don’t take advantage of that.
Related post: Why Being An Introvert Rules
Pushing away the people that support you is a one way ticket to damaging your mental health. It’s so much healthier to keep your existing support system as strong as possible. Of course, not everyone will be able to realistically stick around during your journey. If you feel that some people don’t fit into your life anymore, gently explain that to them.
The last thing you need are regrets and feeling guilty about how you treated someone in the past. So give your grandma a call to see how she’s doing. Text your friend back. Be realistic with your plans. You’ll feel so much better for it.
5. Recognize your online presence
In the era of #keyboardwarriors, how you treat people online is powerful. The internet has helped to create a new breed of bully and has given old school bullies a platform to continue being mean.
The science behind anonymity is scary. People are way more likely to push the boundaries of being mean when they can do it without being recognized.
It’s a common joke that FBI agents are watching us through our cameras, but it really is that easy to be tracked when you do say something threatening or extremely cruel.
Even when you aren’t being anonymous, it’s important to watch what you like, comment on, and share. Many careers have been ruined by people digging up dirt on others because what they do online doesn’t align with their business. Although it’s best to not have awful opinions in the first place, don’t like or share any content that can be attributed to any word that ends in “-ist” or is just plain rude.
Don’t attack others online either. It’s possible to build yourself or your interests up without completely bashing others.
Words hurt. You never know what someone is going through when you decide to be a bully.
Plus, it’s way more fun to be supportive! The blogging community is seriously some of the nicest group of people I have ever encountered. The amount of support I give and receive on Twitter and Instagram is unreal! Self care is all about positivity, so why not share the wealth with others?
Related post: Get To Know Me + Responding To Blogging Awards
So, are you ready to be considerate? Good! It really is for the best for everyone involved.
Follow along with my 30 Day Mental Health Cleanse for more tips on how to practice self care without being obnoxious about it.