If a person has a strong will to attribute everything to the benefit of the Creator, it is a good thing, and he can pray to fulfill this yearning. To want to use all his desire to receive in order to bestow means to be written in the book of the righteous.
However, if he has a strong will to use everything for his self-benefit, it isn’t so bad either since here, everything is clear, and a person can understand the desires he has. He can pray for his desire to receive asking to record him in the book of the wicked who are doomed to death, which means that he wants to annul his ego.
He chooses in which book he wants to be recorded. But if he wants both and finds it hard to decide which one to prefer, it is already a problem. He must try to be in this unclear state as little as possible. Wanting to work for the Creator but, at the same time, to take a little for himself is very dangerous. If a person doesn’t fight against this split state, he can remain in the undecided state for many years, unable to prefer one side over the other.
He may think that he has received a bit from one side and a bit from the other, and so it is okay to wait, and everything will be alright. This is the worst possible state.
It means that a person must try to determine his state with the help of his exertion in the group and the influence of the environment so that he will know that he is wicked and will want to destroy his ego, that is, will want to be recorded in the book of the wicked who are doomed to death. This is called the First Restriction.
Then, he will want to be sentenced to life, being able to work in order to bestow, which means that he will be recorded in the book of the righteous. There must be a very strong request for the intention of in order to bestow upon the Creator so that a person at least will see that he only worries about his self-benefit.
From the Preparation to the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 5/2/13