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Secure Your Own Mask First


This week I am in Dallas on business and am fitting in a visit with one of my cousins. This required an airline flight from Baltimore. Of course, on the flight I heard the safety warnings, including the following:

“If cabin pressure should change, panels above your seat will open revealing oxygen masks; reach up and pull a mask towards you. … The plastic bag will not fully inflate, although oxygen is flowing. Secure your own mask first before helping others.”

When I first heard this years ago, my initial thought was that it seemed selfish. Shouldn’t you take care of those who can’t take care of themselves? In reality, if you do not take care of yourself first, you are useless to those who need your help. After all, you are no good to anyone if you are not conscious.

I saw two good reminders in this. First, it is important to take time to secure your own mask. Immediately for me that is about self-care. It is easy to neglect that mask with all you have going on from running your business to caring for your family. Many of you just finished vend at major shows. You can relate to the need to take care of yourself so you can be the best at your show. If you spend your time creating and preparing for your next gallery show, you can get so caught up in that and neglect to care for yourself. You are too exhausted to enjoy the opening. Caring for yourself first lets you be fully present to the experience with others.

The second reminder was “the plastic bag will not inflate, although oxygen is flowing.” This is why we need to keep growing by taking classes, going to workshops, attending business retreats. While we are receiving the information, we do not always see the impact it is having in our lives. It is there, like the oxygen when we need it.

Please share any parallels you see in your life or business below. I look forward to reading them.

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One Response to “Secure Your Own Mask First”

  1. kat said:

    Whoa, this really hit me square in the face today and stuck.

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