Persuasive Essay – a writing exercise: Self Care, Not Stuck on Self

If you take care of yourself, does that point to narcissism? I think this question is important, especially when it seems selfless acts are more creditable. Furthermore, should we be told that striving for wealth, and not merely working for self preservation, is evil? I don’t think so.

Here’s my point, self preservation is a must, it’s everyone’s obligation, and we should put that above others’ needs, but sometimes the lines are skewed. Think of the workplace. To be more specific, think of an environment where employees are expected to coalesce as a team. When is a person simply performing their assigned tasks, and when are they ignoring their coworkers? I believe, in order to fulfill their role,one must perform their primary tasks first, then, when warranted, help their teammates reach the collective goal. However, if one sufficiently helps their teammates, it doesn’t mean one can’t perform other tasks that might improve his own career.

And, with a collective goal in mind, and if assigned tasks were to represent your obligations to yourself, we can apply it to society as a whole. If looking good, earning a decent wage and holding high status in the community makes one function honorably, should they be held to throwing everything to charity? I think not.

I’ve heard that our Western civilization, a collection of various communities, is too focused on money, yet, if you were to study any advanced ancient civilization, you’d have to realize that, throughout human history, those with a prestigious role in society enjoyed wealth. And, while wealth may have been limited to a select few, it was the desire of any citizen.

How can I know that wealth was desired by all? I simply look at folklore, such as Cinderella, which has variations stemming from different time periods and regions of the world. While I’ll admit the story’s message would be understood as this: ‘self worth can be found in society’s lowest rungs’, there are certainly allusions to more. Simply stated, and I don’t believe it can be denied, being a princess was the fantasy of every young lady of poverty. To have riches, beauty and power, even in more primitive times, was a dream of many…yet simply impossible for most.

Furthermore, if we were to investigate it closer, and realize why the peasants of ancient civilizations dreamed of wealth, we might be inclined to point to dire circumstances. Yet, if those aspirations are simply the product of dire circumstances, why weren’t the dreams more modest? Why wouldn’t the hero end up with only enough food and adequate shelter?

So, I always feel nervous when saying such things, but one believes what they believe. Instead of denying personal outlooks, because I feel guilty working for things others might not be able to attain, I must realize, “Hey, I’m working for this.” If a man spends money on seeds and land, and then reaps a crop, should he not enjoy his reward. Or should he feel guilty because his starving neighbor wasted money on frivolous goods? I think that truly is the question.

Take Care and Safe Travels!

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