My mother needs some money, I will help…my brother has a business plan that needs assistance, I am there…my church has a crisis, I will be the saint…a stranger has a broken down car, I will be the good Samaritan, there is some office drama, I will check on everyone! That is the story of my life, a super woman or am I? Shamilliah, one of our leadership training and life coaches asked us who died and made you God? This had me reflecting on why I seem not to have enough time in a day with 24 hours. I started reflecting on the necessity of kindness and helpfulness. This reflection and intrapersonal connectivity was made even more intense when I had my first hour-long session with my personal life coach, Alicia who asked me the same questions Shamilliah had asked. This had me reflecting even more deeply on my socialization and how that has played out and what I urgently have to do going forward in order to be a more effective person.
Socialisation and being helpful
A mother raised me who did not pass on doing a random act of kindness raised me. She was everybody’s super heroine and looking back that was good but also had its own challenges. It resulted in me being a person that is ever ready to help. It is like engraved in my DNA that when there is a crisis, I should be helpful. However, I realise now that my mother did not help at the expense of her own life and family. Being helpful means being there and also playing out the Good Samaritan as I was rightfully raised to be. However, whatever Jesus did (as this was the model I was socialised to follow), he did not compromise on his own heavenly mission. I discovered he sometimes came across as brazen as he sought to deliver what his God-given mission was. This entails saying no. I was socialized to be helpful but that does not mean compromising whatever priorities I have so as to make the next person smile. I am so grateful for this kindness and helpfulness but slowly learning that it does not have to compromise who I should be and what needs to be done!
Being helpful is not a bad thing. However, after talking to Alicia for an hour and reflecting on my life and this helpfulness, I discovered the need to sort myself out. I will help indeed but have to create boundaries going forward and be able to simply say no so that I can focus on what is priority with me. This means focusing on what is number one on my own agenda and helps me achieve effectiveness in my life. Again, it means I will have to ignore certain emergency cases if they are not in line with my priorities lest I spend the rest of my life helping others achieve and attain their own goals whilst trashing mine! Helpfulness means maintaining a balance for what is critically ideal for me and ensures I achieve my goals and make a difference. Going forward, I will choose my tasks carefully so that my 24-hour day is meaningful to me whilst I continuously engage in random acts of kindness. Many thanks to my mother for the socialisation to be helpful and now I have been able to advance the helpfulness with a dash of self-care, which the world deems as selfishness…