If you need to talk about how your partner, in-laws, ex-lovers, bosses past and present, friends, politicians and even your perfectly loveable pet are all making you miserable, and are to blame for your lack of joy, I say to you in the most loving way I know how “Shut up! Stop spreading that crap! Step up to your life and make it better instead of taking the easy way out and blaming others for all that’s lacking!”
Now! I feel better with that off of my chest. I’d apologize if I thought I was being a little too rough, but I don’t think I was. You see, I used to be one of those people who spread the news of all that was wrong in my life. I got pretty good about spinning the tale of all the bad things that I was suffering through. And each tale, no matter how many times I told it, just ended up being another episode of “poor me” and I felt a little worse and a little more pathetic with each telling. I wasn’t trying to feel bad or be pathetic, but I do have to wonder what I expected. Did I really believe that one day, magically, everything I didn’t like about my life would get better because I had complained about it so much? Could I have possibly thought that?
No. That doesn’t even make sense!
The thing is, I was not thinking about what I was doing at all…I was just doing something to find some relief and I got stuck in a rut. A kind of rut that goes something like this: Things go bad, people do you wrong, so you rant, complain, blame and tell the story so you get people to say things like “oh, you poor thing,” or “wow, that’s just awful!” And for that second, you feel affirmed and slightly better, but then that fades away so you look for the next opportunity to feel affirmed and slightly better for just another second. It’s exhausting and lonely and it keeps you stuck and the worst thing is that it doesn’t offer any real relief.
If you know someone like this, whatever you do don’t give them pity! That will just prolong their agony. And if this is a good description of you, I encourage you to stop seeking pity by spreading the news of all that is not right in your life. Instead, find a support group, find a coach, find a therapist and say something like, “I want my best life and I am getting in my own way. Can you help me?” Or, go to the local library and look in the self help section. I highly recommend any of the Martha Beck books that are on my bookshelf right here on this site. If you want relief, it is available!
Our lives are our responsibility. So stop spreading the news of what’s not right and start seeing all that is right. There’s a lot to see, but you have to be willing.
We are creating our lives…one decision at a time.