Wisdom Day 18
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I learned a powerful lesson the last time I was on a plane. The flight attendant’s canned safety instructions about the oxygen mask took on new meaning as wisdom was whispering that day. She said:
“If you are traveling with a child or someone who requires assistance, secure your mask first, before assisting the other person.”
I’ve heard these words a hundred times. But for some reason I heard the instructions differently that day. The idea of preparing and tending to my own safety and well being first before assisting others was a powerful life lesson, one that resonated deeply within my soul. One I absolutely needed to learn to be whole and to live wholeheartedly.
Too often I’ve tended to the needs of others without first making sure I was even in a position to help them. Too often I’ve put my needs on the back burner because I convinced myself others seemed to be more in need. Too often the admonitions I received in my youth about not being a selfish only child from well-intended adults translated into stuffing or deferring my needs so I didn’t appear to needy or take too much.
But as an adult my childhood coping mechanisms no longer serve me well (or at all). And without first filling up my own cup, there’s no chance that it can overflow and bless others.
So today I resolve to putting my own mask on first and filling my own cup before tending to the needs of others. Tending to my own needs first isn’t selfish, it’s self-FILLED. And being filled is the only way I can prepare myself to be used by God to bless others.
There’s wisdom in putting your SELF first. So the next time you hear a flight attendant advise you to put on your oxygen mask first in case of emergency, heed the wisdom in the whisper and take care of your own needs before attempting to help others.
Wisdom in the Whisper™ and WisdomintheWhisper.com by Tonya Marie is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. Based on a work at www.wisdominthewhisper.com.