Feeling sorry for ourselves is ok, it’s part of the human experience. It’s helpful in that it places us in contemplation mode so we can hopefully examine why we are feeling sad for ourselves. This can also be harmful if we allow ourselves to dwell too long in this space.
Contemplation can easily turn into rumination if we are not careful.Whenever I find myself starting to feel sorry for myself, I say out loud, “you are not a victim”. Because I am not. I have a choice, we all have a choice to feel the way we want to feel. Sometimes I get angry at myself for dwelling too long at my pity party but it’s important not to chastise myself – I recognize the feelings and gently let them go.
Easier said than done right? It takes a lot of practice, a lot of patience and care. Be kind to yourself. Be grateful. Be grateful that you are smart enough to figure things out and know that your energy and time are better spent on almost anything else. Go for a walk, exercise (I used to hate when people suggested this)… really.
Energy creates more energy and by putting yourself in motion you allow your mind to shift into a more positive space. I like to walk around my neighborhood in the morning while it’s still cool, without listening to any music. As I walk, I invite stillness. My thoughts suspend and I become present. The clouds, trees and road become sharper and larger. I feel the energy of my surroundings and it infuses me with more energy and I feel at peace. I am a beginner with meditation and these walks are the closest I have come so far to finding peace.
The best thing is that peace is always available but our ego and culture horn in and tries to block it from us. So the next time you catch yourself feeling sorry for yourself, remember to call it out, then shift your perspective my moving your body- even if its just to get from your desk and go to the break room. Moving will tell your brain to open space to think about something else. As you move, try and be as aware as possible. Notice the pattern of the rug you are walking on or the color of the walls, the sounds. Suspend your thinking. Feel yourself calm and be grateful for however brief the feeling may be.
This is an act of love- for yourself.
Christian Marie Herron, is Story Mentor and Creative Consultant for entrepreneurs, thinkers and creatives.