How to Stop Feeling Sorry about Yourself

By Sharon Moore on May 11, 2015

Self-pity. It strikes us from time to time. When someone we like rejects us, when our boss doesn’t seem to appreciate our efforts, or when things aren’t going as planned, we tend to feel sorry for ourselves. But this attitude does not help. Whilst you may feel the need to throw a pity party, feeling sorry for yourself can become downright self-destructive. So before you end up feeling that you are never good enough, here are the things you can do.

Recognise the signs.

When something bad comes up, our thoughts tend to become exaggeratedly negative. And the next thing we know, we are already caught up in a downward spiral. The negative emotions that we feel during undesirable circumstances fuel negative thinking even more. Recognising when you are paying too much attention to the negative things is the first step towards fighting self-pity.

Face your feelings.

“Even the best fall down sometimes”, so goes a popular song. No matter how fine your life seems today, there will be moments that you will feel miserable, lacking, sad and angry. There will be times that you will feel so down. But you need not run away from these feelings. Rather, you need to face them. Instead of wondering why you are feeling this way or why you’d have to go all through these difficulties, the best way to deal with discomfort is to just get through them.

Practise gratefulness.

It is hard and almost impossible to experience self-pity and feel grateful at the same time. Feelings of self-pity pulls you down, whilst gratitude lifts you up. It can be hard to feel grateful during difficult times, but the key is to make a conscious effort. By doing so, you are comforting your troubled mind.  

Develop a more optimistic outlook.

A positive mind does not entertain thoughts of self-pity. Some of life’s challenges aren’t solved overnight. You’d have to go through a really tough time before you could finally bounce back. But that is a life fact that we have to accept. And while we cannot change it, we can change how we look at these undesirable circumstances and use them to learn and create a better version of ourselves.

Take action.

Not doing anything about a negative situation will just make you feel helpless, which fuels self-pity. Instead of focusing on why it happened, or why you are going through such a difficult time, focus your energy and attention on thinking how to make things better and resolve the problem. By taking action, you are empowering yourself and fighting feelings of self-pity.

Develop a strong mental health.

Last but not the least, learn how to develop a strong mental health. But how do you do it? Developing mental strength requires establishing good habits like being more optimistic, getting enough rest and sleep, taking risks, engaging in creative tasks, and many others. It requires giving up negative habits too, like ruminating, doing negative self-talk, and belittling yourself.

Self-pity is a destructive behaviour that we should learn how to overcome for us to unleash our true potential, overcome life’s challenges, and be happier.

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