Tuesday 15 May 2012

Taking Care Of Ourselves First

When travelling on airlines, as part of the operational safety procedures, we will hear:"Please put on the oxygen mask on yourself first before tending to your children."

Isn't it counter-intuitive to our natural instinct to protect our young ones first?

Or do you know that experienced life-guards will let swimmers in trouble "drown" first before attempting to bring them on-shore for resuscitation?

Before you start kicking life-guards in the press, maybe you can pause and reflect whether it's easier to rescue one drowning person or two drowning persons - never mind if the other inexperienced rescuer is just trying to help...

I love to follow my heart over what my mind says.  But on this topic, I constantly have to remind myself to heed the sound logical reasoning of the mind over the emotional instinct of the heart.

This is also one of those "right" actions that may incur lots of public criticisms and rebuke after the fact. It takes courage to do the "right" thing.

Successful people who took care of themselves first are able to contribute back to society. You see their names on roads, hospitals, university halls, etc. 

Most just see the generosity and kindness part. If these philanthropists cannot take care of themselves first, can they help others?

Some understand this truth but is hesitant or reluctant to be seen to be taking care of themselves first. They fear public accusations of being selfish, egotistical, and putting me first.

No? Is reputation or the viewpoint of strangers more important than the well-being of your child?

In an airplane emergency, you put on the air mask on your child and expect your child to take care of a passed-out you? Now that's pushing the "play victim" role a bit too far...

Have we seen examples of these in our everyday lives outside of the airplane analogy?

You probably noticed I don't talk much about the investments and speculations in my blog. You've guessed right! I am busy trying to stay afloat myself!

If I can take care of myself, it will be better for my family, my neighbours, and country.

Handouts or subsidies have to come from somewhere...


  1. In investing or trading, we will need to take care of our capital first when the market doesn't move in the direction of our anticipation.

    1. CW8888,

      Exactly! I hope newbies will re-read your above wisdom and reflect the truth in it's simplicity ;)

      To play you need chips; no chips you can't play.

      Being right or wrong has nothing to do capital preservation.

  2. Yes if i can't even help myself, the more i try to help you, the more the help you will need.
    And in investment even if i show you how i do it it's not much help. Because Investing in the stock market is defined as: "managing finances and emotions at the exact moment of putting one’s money where one’s mouth is," as defined in a book i read. And i can't agree more. So can your emotions or even your money exactly same as mine?

    1. Temperament,

      Alas I learned it the hard way.

      I am one of those in school who don't know still likes to "teach" others.

      I went to Metro while others went to JCs.


    2. No, No, i mean it is the same as we have read so many investment books about how the great investors of this world invest, can we really invest like them? By reading so much about them, can we say we have learned from them enough to invest like them? No way, in fact we are all so much different. Even identical twins will have their differences. So i mean it is the same even if i show how i invest to my son, he will not invest the same as me because mainly his psyche and DNA will not be exactly the same as me. He will have to find his own way.

    3. Temperament,

      Ah so!

      Funny thing many want to be Warren Buffet wannebe when we are different...

  3. Exactly, Jarred. I fully agree. As Suzee Orman says, "People first, then money, then things. Now YOU stay safe." By "people", she can also mean "take care of yourself too...if not, first."

    1. Ronian,

      Yes! People should always come first!

    2. Hi,

      agree with you. Only when we have helped ourselves are we in the position to help others. At least that's how I rationalise it haha

    3. Thanks LP!

      It's nice to be able to give and contribute :)

  4. Hi smol

    Thanks for sharing this with me.
    U are right about taking care of ownself 1st follow by others. Lucky my family now all ok. I doesnt need to help them much. My 1st priority is always my family. I dont really kaypoh others people financial but sometimes really feel sad to see others that need help but I can't do much...

    1. sy sy,

      Glad to know that.

      Stay healthy, stay strong, and always stay sassy girl!


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