How many of you have flown on an airplane, even once in your life?
Once is enough to know the mandatory safety announcement (that you completely ignore, but whatevs) tells you to “put your mask on first”. And also enough to know that there’s always that *one guy* trying to cram his bag in the overhead bin, holding up the entire boarding process…
Break this down with me:
There’s an in-flight emergency (apologies to my nervous flyers out there) and those stylish yellow-orange masks fall from above.
Your impulse is to help the person next to you first (maybe you know them, maybe you don’t). This is altruistic. It’s human.
“Put your mask on first”, they tell you.
Why? Why is that SO important?
Because without your own mask, you have zero oxygen. Without oxygen, your brain becomes impaired and, in a matter of minutes, irreparable damage occurs rendering you utterly useless to everyone around you. And not just useless, but burdensome…as now there’s a lifeless you in the way with which others must contend. Whereas if you put that mask on yourself, took a deep breath of oxygen, you’d be fully resourced to help those around you…
Spoiler Alert: this is not just about airplanes.
We are all responsible for putting our masks on first, literal or metaphorical.
We worry too much about appearing “selfish” over the wrong things. Caring for yourself is not selfish – it’s a gift to those in your life. It is a deep act of love. You’re saying “I love you so much that I will not place the burden of my well being at your feet”. This alone may be the secret to lasting relationships.
Nobility is never found in self-neglect.
Put your mask on first.
Sparkle on, friends…💖