Is self-interest positive or negative? Is self-interest good or bad? Indeed why should self-interest be worthy of investigation? Simply, self-interest is the motivational energy of everything all creatures undertake and that it is considered positive or negative is secondary to the fact that it is. No self-interest no life!
Here is a list of terms generally associated with this term: egoism, selfishness, ethical egoism, psychological egoism, individualism, objectivist ethics, hedonism, Epicureanism.
We would skirt around these distractions and choose instead to accentuate the positive, focusing on the notions of altruism, egotism, enlightened and indirect self-interest, ethic of reciprocity, generosity and objectivist philosophy in the basic acknowledgement that we all want a better world for ourselves and everyone around us.
More important, however, surely has to be a look at what this self is in order to understand more about self interest. We invite you or, if it makes any difference, challenge you to take stock of the self of self interest and thoroughly review your traditional take on it in order to get a fuller understanding. Take the small step to that end, check out who you really are and get a little self interest self-help with the ultimate self-help book and CD pack - The MindBlower. It will at the very least give you a fresh perspective, actually help you to realize who you really are if it is possible to let go of all those old habits and naturally get a completely new take on what self interest is all about.