All of us have days when things just do not seem to be going our way and we feel demoralized. In such a situation, it is natural to feel sorry for yourself for some time; however, you have to learn to move on. Why? Because it works against you in the following ways.
It Clouds Your Perspective
As you dwell on thoughts of how bad things are, you tend to blame anyone even remotely associated with the circumstances. Result – you lose focus on the important stuff like identifying the problem and dealing with it.
Your friend screams at you over something unimportant and you just take it. You moan, “Oh, what can I do about it, my parents never taught me to stand up for myself, so it’s just the way I am, and always will be.”
In reality, you ought to be looking at developing greater self-confidence as well as empathy that allows you to put your friend’s tantrum in perspective.
Often, you get so used to pitying yourself that soon, you start wanting to have problems to cry over and this attitude means you never look for a solution to the problems you face.
It Makes You Ungrateful
With self-pity, you end up so full of what is wrong with your life that you completely miss out on feeling grateful for the things that are right. Ok, we may have some things going wrong right now, but aren’t there some things that are blessings in our life? All it takes is the good sense to recognize these for the value they hold and feel grateful for having them. When you are in the self-pity mode, you are so unable to see the good things in your life that it causes you to sink deeper and deeper into the abyss of depression.
It Ruins Your Relationships
No one likes to interact with someone who is perpetually whining about how unfair life is. Your family and friends may extend a helping hand when you occasionally feel low in spirit after a particularly devastating incident. However, if you constantly wallow in self-pity, you are not likely to find too many people interested in spending time with you. As you begin to realize this, you tend to start feeling bitter towards them and this further fuels the self-pity you already feel.
There is another effect of self-pity – it can make you feel so much bitterness that your behavior towards people around you may change for the worse. When you are feeling so bad about things that have gone wrong for you, you unknowingly take it as a license to treat other people badly.
When such are the dangers of self-pity, does it not make sense to steer clear of it?
Helen Keller, blind and deaf from a very young age had every cause to complain; yet, she is the one who conquered her disability to set a shining example. As she so very aptly said, “Self-pity is our worst enemy and if we yield to it, we can never do anything wise in this world.”
The best way to keep this damaging emotion at bay is to hold on to the hope that things always change after some time. Count your blessings, and see what you can learn from the difficult experiences you face. Stay in the company of positive-minded people, and take tips from them on dealing with your situations. Remember, tough times don’t last, tough people do !