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Fillers, caretakers, rescuers: You need to take care of yourselves!

by Marilyn C. Arayata

The “fillers”- theyfeel compelled to provide what is lacking – whether material or immaterial – although it is not their responsibility. They are the people who find meaning in their lives when they use it to help ease other people’s burdens. (There is nothing wrong with helping people unless you overdo it, to the point of sacrificing your own needs and feelings all the time.)

They have the so-called “caretaker attitude”. One day they realize that they are so busy taking care of everybody, but nobody seems to take care of them. They show a strong façade that friends and relatives overlook the fact that they, too, are human. They also have needs, and those needs are not less important than the needs of their families, friends, and neighbors.

Do you have the “caretaker attitude”? Learn to strike a balance. You are special. It is okay to be on the receiving end once in a while. Relax and let go. You don’t have to fill all the needs of other people. You need to take care of yourself, too.

The thing with being a “filler” is that it encourages other people to just depend on you. They no longer exert any effort because you solve everything for everybody, anyway. They no longer worry because you do the worrying for them. They love being “takers”; they no longer think that you also have your own needs.That is not a healthy relationship.

How long can you bear that? When you are no longer strong and capable, when your resources are gone, will people prioritize your needs? Is there anybody in your circle who will take care of you emotionally and in the practical sense? If people are used to being receivers/takers, will they be willing to show a little concern when you need help?

Reach out to people. Care about their needs, but always leave something for yourself. You are worthy even without playing “rescuer” all the time.

Do you know people who have always shown the “caretaker attitude”? How can you reverse the role this time? Maybe they can become recipients of your kind gesture – and who knows what difference it will make. Their needs are not less important than the needs of their families, neighbors, and friends.

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