top of page

(Don't) Fill Your Own Cup

Updated: Jan 11, 2020

Hey everyone! Welcome to Pretty Aggressive Concepts!

Today I'm going to talk to you about why you shouldn't 'Fill Your Own Cup.'

The concept of Fill Your Own Cup comes from the idea that if your 'cup' isn't full, you are unable to serve, or give to others. You can't pour from an empty cup. If your needs aren't met or you don't feel full, you can't help anyone else with what they need or want from you.

First of all - this concept is typically aimed at helping women and mothers understand that if they feel burnt out or drained, they don't have anything left to continue giving to others. Lets just take a second to think about the patriarchy, misogynistic bullshit idea that women are 'vessels' which need to filled.

Moving on - So what happens when you go to fill your cup with all the lifestyle sections that people suggest you fill your cup with?

Self care - make sure to do that!

Family and kids - make sure to enjoy those!

Make time for personal growth and development!

Don't forget to have a social life!

Then make sure to have a fulfilling career as well!

But shit - what if you come up short? What if doing all of those things doesn't...actually 'fill' your cup to the brim? What happens when you don't feel 'full'?

You feel like a failure.

You feel like you failed.

It's one more thing on the list - that you can't seem to get 'right.'

Furthermore, what is this idea that we need to be full or fill ourselves? Why do we need to consume, bring things into one's self, and obtain - in order to feel like we have enough? Why do we need to do this in order to feel adequate, or that we have enough? Why do we NEED to feel 'full'?

Concepts like this perpetuate the severe gluttony problem in our society (physical & emotional.)

I have another theory: You are not 'a cup.'

You are but a mere pebble, connected to a vast ocean of other pebbles, all intermingling and interconnected on the same plain of existence. You are but one small piece among all the other people in your own world...and the world in general. So when we direct our focus on our own needs, and ask whether or not we have enough as an individual - we behave as a separate entity, isolating ourselves from everyone else. The thought process of 'getting enough before you give to others' segregates you, to function independently.

It doesn't work like that. Everything on this earth is interconnected. All of the things we put out into the world - our love, time, energy, service to others, spirituality - needs to be understood in a constant balance of give and take. Its not just about sharing - it's also about taking turns.

Now, codependency would be the equivalent of the 'empty cup.' When you're on the bottom of a pile of codependent relationships, you are allowing others to press on your boundaries needed for survival. When you are the one sitting on the top of the pile, your the one unfairly expecting others to supply you with what you need in your life (basically fill your cup for you.)

And now for something completely different! (-Monty Python)

Symbiotic relationships are where your basic existence and functioning not only serves to satisfy your own needs, but incidentally supplements the lives of others around you. This includes your family, friends, coworkers and community. You are neither looking to take or receive 'enough' in order to give back or supply a 'return.' Everyone in a symbiotic relationship simply functions as a human 'being' which supports their own survival in unison with participating in behavior that supports the survival of others around them.

Lastly - remember that fear, hate and rage...separate us. No one wins. It destroys our connections to each other and no one survives. Fucking stop it.

Next level understanding is to explore the Eastern Philosophies (that have been around a lot longer than religion) which explain that the vessel or 'cup' we are encouraged to fill - is our Ego. Not our actual 'self.' That's not 'who you are' as a person. You are not this unique little snowflake, independently existing apart from everyone else.

You are connected. You are grouped. You are not 'apart.' You are 'a part.' You are 'with' everyone else.

I fully encourage anyone interested to dive into further teachings of Buddhist Philosophy and continue their growth, understanding and evolution in this life.

Be Aggressive. Thrive in this life - because just surviving is bullshit.

Thanks for reading!

58 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page