In my Sunday brunch for thought I addressed the topic of doing for other people versus doing for yourself. The balance between keeping your life in order while helping those around you is forever changing.  The lulls and peaks of excitement, stability and chaos in our lives our unpredictable.  Those conditions either enable or prevent us from giving time to others (unless we do while sacrificing our time to ourselves.)  How many times have you felt obliged to help someone even though you know that time is really needed to accomplish your own goals?  Are you really doing the right thing by sacrificing yourself for the sake of someone you want to help?  Of course it depends on the situation, but in general (excluding severe emergency cases) depriving yourself of what you need will surely arise as an issue sooner or later.  You may even end up holding a grudge against the person you helped.  How often have you heard yourself think ‘ I could have been doing x for myself instead of doing y for her and she isn’t even appreciative!’  Thoughts like that mean that you should have just helped yourself.  No one you’ve given assistance to wants to hear that suddenly you’ve become a martyr after your acts of kindness.  Taking care of yourself is really a priority in the general scheme of life.  Now when you decline to help or give time to someone else but actually have the capacity to do so is another story.  How many times have you heard yourself make a bunch of excuses aka reasons as to why you can’t help someone?  How many times have you heard that “shoulda, woulda, coulda lingo” when you were asked for something from someone else?  Thoughts like that are red flags for “I’m lazy and I don’t care.”  If you’re striking the right balance between giving to yourself and others then you probably aren’t having thoughts like those.  Since we are in a constant state of fluctuation it is so important for us to pay attention to what streams through our head.  Balance isn’t easy to keep but if you stay true and fair to yourself- and those around you chances are the scales won’t tip too much.