Yesterday we talked about self-care being about bigger things than just the individual – bigger than “Me.” This leads us into today’s questions.
Question #1: Is Not Doing Self-Care Selfish? Please tell me your story.
As if there weren’t enough things to feel guilty about, we had to ask this question!
One of the intuitive responses many of us have when we hear this kind of question is to moralize our behaviors by using our emotions to interpret their value. This can lead to inappropriate guilt, and even more so when we suffer from an affective (involving mood,) and/or anxiety illness(es.) We do this to ourselves and/or to others.
Some time ago we spoke about emotions often being used by us to interpret our reality; even though they don’t decide our reality. To emphasize this, let’s name emotion, as others have done before us, “The Sixth Sense” – and I’m not referring to that scary movie with Bruce Willis in it.
Just like our traditionally named Five Senses, the emotion senses are used to interpret the world around us and define what we perceive as true.
- Smell (olfacoception or olfacception)
- Vision (ophthalmoception)
- Hearing (audioception)
- Touch (tactioception)
- Taste (gustaoception)
We have many other senses as well – temperature (thermoception), kinesthetic sense (proprioception), pain (nociception), balance (equilibrioception) and acceleration (kinesthesioception). We argue as to how to define a perception. But unlike with the sense of emotions, what we don’t usually argue over is qualifying a moral value to these other more familiar senses.
Senses are perceptions. They are not objective. They are subjective. For example, we cannot measure vision in a vial. Even people who are neurologically blind, have things they perceive that they see. There are visual pseudohallucinations that happen with visual system lesions, such as a stroke – hallucinations like moving, colored or geometrical forms, real objects or scenes. We won’t get into all the different types of hallucinations or pseudohallucinations there are. Rather, we will highlight that what we “see” is a perception and not a measured value. Same with emotions. Emotions are perceptions and not measured values. The Sixth Sense.
If we could quantify the sense of emotions and qualify the sense of emotions than it would be easier for us to be more objective when thinking about our original question. So what now? A lot of help that does!
Question #2: What now?
This brings us back to the self-care practice of “presence.” It just is. So it goes. Oh well. Stay connected so you have other reference points to yourself. Go towards your fears to be more present with yourself, …and so on.
Question #1: Is Not Doing Self-Care Selfish?
It depends who is asking and who is answering in context of how they are using their emotions to qualify self-care. When we think about not doing self-care, we can’t help but remember all the people in the wake of the uncared for life. Those people if asked might say, yes or no, depending if they interpret selfishness as a moral issue and where they assigned moral value otherwise. When we think about the person not doing their self-care, she might say, no or yes, depending if she interpreted selfishness as a moral issue and where she assigned moral value otherwise.
Another intersecting paradigm into our perceptions, and there are many, is the temperament typology. Many of us, in fact the majority of us, interpret our reality through our Sixth Sense – how we feel. This is as we were designed, as we were wired, as we do from a biological level. Yet we assign moral value to The Sixth Sense – Emotions.
Consistently, those of us who are genetically interpreting our reality from thought, executive thinking and more detached from the limbic system of the brain – we have moralized, assigning value to those abilities or the lack of them. (Don’t go there. My brain is tired. Don’t bring up the idea that The Seventh Sense is thought! Ah!)
The fact that we can say, No! to taking on the moral assignments of others, comes to us from our freedom to choose or not to choose self-care.
Question #1: Is Not Doing Self-Care Selfish?
Self-Care Tip #209 – Embrace your Sixth Sense to be present with yourself in self-care.
- Set Your Self-Care Free. It Is Not A Moral Issue. (friendtoyourself.com)
- Connection: It’s Medical But Still Magical (friendtoyourself.com)
- Morality vs. Prudence in Confucianism? (warpweftandway.wordpress.com)
- Frans de Waals: The Moral Animal (delong.typepad.com)
- Is it Too Risky to Debate Morality’s Foundations in the Public Square? (camelswithhammers.com)
- Emotions – One Part of The Multi-Paradigm Weave That Makes Us Who We Are (friendtoyourself.com)
- Let Things Come Together And Fall Apart To Experience Them More Fully – Presence (friendtoyourself.com)