9 Signs You've Forgotten Yourself
In other words: You've fallen off on your own to-do list—without your even realizing.
Your Hair Mysteriously Seems to Have Stopped Growing...
Which brings up the three most sleep-killing questions in the world—Am I Pregnant? Do I Have Cancer?, Did I Get the Family Bald Gene? But don't worry, scientifically speaking, this can happen when, "dirt and oil accumulate on your scalp and hair follicles, causing inflammation and irritation.
" In other words, your hair growth has stunted from lack of washing. Prescription: lather, rinse, repeat at least once a week.
You Find Yourself Proudly Thinking, "I Just Burned 26 Calories," After Washing the Dishes (or Stirring Cookie Batter)
While the claim may be true
, it also implies that you are not working out, and that you are telling yourself that taking care of the house and the other people who live there is also taking care of yourself. You have time for a 45-minute spin class four times a week...exactly once a year. For the other weeks, you can get it done in seven minutes
You Use Your Husband's Special Sensitive-Gum Toothpaste
Even though your gums are healthy and hardy—save for when you use his toothpaste and feel a weird, sparkly tingle throughout your mouth. This also applies to using your roommate's dandruff-fighting conditioner (when you don't have dandruff). Unlike other life challenges—i.e., saving for retirement, getting the garbage disposal fixed—which may require MIT-level solutions, this one's easy: a trip to the drugstore for over-the-counter products that don't cure what doesn't ail you—such as plain old toothpaste.
Photo: Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock
Your Partner Sends You Expensive Red Roses on Valentine's Day or Takes You for a Fancy French Meal
In a recent study
, 28 percent of women wanted travel as a present—the most popular gift—but 45 percent of them got flowers and another 41 percent dinner. This same imbalance may appear in other areas—you have a dog for the kids, though you love cats; you got a bonus week off of work, when you really want a promotion. How is it that your life is not aligned with your real desires? The first step may be to take a few minutes to remember those desires...then, to go communicate them to the world.
Photo: johanna goodyear/iStock/360/Thinkstock
You Have Eaten Leftovers Three Times This Week
Nobody in the family likes leftovers, but that can be misread as, "No one likes leftovers except you, who does like them." Being a responsible citizen of the world, you can't stand to throw out food. Here's what you need: a massive amount of grated cheese, which seems to be the number one ingredient for disguising leftovers as freshly made dinners
and which, conveniently, means you'll have to buy a club sandwich for lunch.
A Year Has Gone By and You Haven't Asked for a Raise
Ask (right now). It may not feel like it
, but statistically speaking, the economy is better now than it was a few years ago, so now may be the time to make your case. But, in a way that emphasizes the benefit to your company.
Photo: Steve Baccon/Thinkstock
You Wear a Ponytail Every Day of Week, Including Saturday
Because you don't want to mess up your hair while you, say, pick up the laundry on the floor, race around to make everyone breakfast and corral the dog into his crate. So, you save the styling for the last 15 minutes, right before you leave the house. Except that there is no last 15 minutes, ever; those minutes are like the shimmering mirage of water at the far end of the desert, which you run to, flat iron and styling gloss in hand, only to see them vanish the minute you arrive at the mirror. Hence, your ponytailitis. One solution? Hair that does itself overnight while you sleep
Photo: Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock
Your Last 15 Bank Transactions Have Been for Other People
The college-fund contribution for your niece. The family's health insurance. Your mom's kitchen cabinets. Lunch for your co-worker. The baby shower gift for Sukie. That cute ring for your BFF who just got dumped. The tennis shoes, ice skates, violin tuner, chapter book, Pokemon cards, stuffed duck, purple goo that is somehow branded as a toy, Rainbow Loom and Frozen
DVD that your kids could not
survive another day without.
Yes, the way life is, you may have to spend more on others than on yourself; but take 10 dollars in cash, put your name on it—physically, in ball-point pen—and stuff it in your desk drawer. Repeat each time you realize you've taken care of everyone but yourself until you have 100 dollars, then deeply consider ideas on which to spend it (running shoes, anybody?
Photo: Siri Stafford/Digital Vision/Thinkstock
You Are in Someone Else's Traffic Jam
Because you offered to pick up your sister's dry-cleaning on the way to dropping off your best friend at the airport, which took you across town and over the railroad tracks, you're now sitting between exits 17 and 18 on a stretch of highway, far, far, far from your own life. New rule: one favor per day. Which is enough for you to help the people you love (and to make you feel good), but not so much that you spend your days reading the bumper stickers of strangers behind whose cars you should have never been.