DNAinfo.com featured a fascinating article on the importance of helping others while helping yourself . They talk about being able to balance between helping those who need it, without putting yourself at risk too. “As we all deal with the aftermath of Sandy, it’s clear that there are thousands of New Yorkers in desperate need of assistance. But how much can you help, and how do you know when you’re in need of assistance yourself? It’s a challenging balancing act, but one that can be made easier with a few simple suggestions.”
“To begin, let’s start with a seemingly unrelated hypothetical question. Let’s say you are traveling with a small child on a plane flight. The cabin de-pressurizes and the oxygen masks fall from the console. You know from paying attention to the flight attendants’ pre-flight safety presentation that you need to put the mask on or else you will pass out from a lack of oxygen. Now, do you put the oxygen mask on the child or yourself first?
While it’s a natural inclination, if you answered the child, you’re wrong. Why? In order for you to be helpful to the child, you need to have oxygen flowing to your brain so that you can have the wherewithal to put the mask on him or her. If you pass out, chances are the child will pass out as well. The takeaway — you need to put your needs first in order to be of any help to others.”