You either get bitter or you get better. It’s that simple. You either take what has been dealt to you or allow it to make you a better person, or you allow it to tear you down. The choice does not belong to fate, it belongs to you.
There will always be a reason to feel sorry for ourselves. Sometimes it really is appropriate to grieve something terrible that has happened in our lives. However we have to move on at some point and set ourselves free from the trap of self-pity.
If you are like me, the reason you sometimes feel sorry for yourself is because it feels good. I know that sounds odd, but if you think about it, it really does. When I feel sorry for myself, what I’m really saying is that I deserve better, that I am a better person than what the situation has dealt me. If you think about it, that’s kind of an arrogant thing to say.
It would be better if our attitude was more like, man that sucks, I didn’t get that job or I didn’t make it through, better luck next time. Or we could just laugh about it with our friends. The trouble comes when something hard happens, and we choose to stop and milk it for attention. There’s no progress in that and it isn’t going to get us anywhere, in fact it’s just so annoying.
Look at it this way, when a person works out, they aren’t building up their muscles but rather tearing them down. When you lift weights, you are doing damage to your muscles. The reason your muscles grow, is because your body repairs its damaged muscles, and makes them bigger so that the next time you lift that much weight, you won’t get hurt. Subsequently you lift more weights, and your body gets stronger and stronger.
Moreover it’s like that with our emotions, once we experience something hard, it tears us down. It really does hurt, doesn’t it? We screw up and embarrass ourselves or we go through hardships that make us hopeless. But honestly, there is nothing bad that can happen to us that won’t return a greater blessing if we let it. We will always come out stronger. And believe me, life is going to throw a lot of pain at you.
American blogger, Donald Miller explains that “what self-pity does, is that it stops us from gaining that emotional muscle. We can either have the blessing of a stronger character, or the immediate gratification of self-pity but not both.” People, who wallow in self-pity, never grow strong in character. What we have to do instead is ask ourselves what we can learn from the situation. If we fail, we have to take ownership of the fault we made. Besides if it wasn’t our fault, we have to understand that the rain falls on the good and the bad, and crops only grow out of ground that has been rained upon.
Let’s learn to work on the situation and move on. Let’s stop feeling sorry for ourselves and just deal with the rain as it comes. Self-pity is not worth it and it never did anyone any good.
Until then…keep strong