Self-pity is a cruel companion. It comes after us all, attacking our weaknesses, and exploiting our insecurities. It tells us if we were somewhere else doing something else we’d be better off. It tells us if our outside situation was different we would be different. But self-pity is an interior battle that has nothing to do with outside forces. Sure, some situations may exasperate it, but we are more often victims of our own thoughts than we are our situations.
It’s a dangerous safety net that we believe we can fall back on when things begin to turn for the worse. We fall into a victim mindset that is unrelenting and unproductive. It tells us that it’s not our fault. It tells us that we’re just victims of a situation. We fall into the downward spiral of negativity and complaints. As we get deeper and deeper into ourselves we lose sight of the way out. It becomes all-consuming. We become slaves to ourselves.
From the outside looking in it seems pathetic. Nobody likes a victim wallowing in self-pity, blaming everyone but themselves for their problems. But I’d argue to say that we’ve all been there, held captive by a situation that seemed out of our control, forgetting that we can control ourselves, that we can change our mindset. These situations overwhelm us and lead to a sense of feeling stuck. If only we understood that we’re not stuck.
For those of you who’ve seen Bridesmaids, it’s hilarious and completely inappropriate, but the character Annie is a prime example of a person consumed by self-pity. At the end of the movie Megan jumps on top of Annie and tells her to “fight for her sh*tty life” (excuse the language.) This scene is strangely powerful because it’s SO true.
Sometimes we need an overweight lady to jump on top of us and start smacking us around telling us to fight. (This post is your overweight lady, if that’s what you need.) Sometimes we need someone to pull us out of the giant hole that is self-pity and remind us that we aren’t victims. Sometimes, you need to pull yourself out.
We are constantly being called to be better. This call is often presented in the form of struggle and difficulty. The struggles we face are a way of becoming who we need to be. Self-pity is a road block on this path. As Megan said in Bridesmaids, ”You’re your own problem Annie, but you’re also your solution.”
Self-pity and the victim mentality are debilitating. Be a fighter, a go getter, a warrior, not a passive survivor.
Read, read, read – get inspired
Pray- Lord, change my heart and mindset.
Workout- feel good about yourself
Pray- Lord, thy will be done.
Invest in your hobbies- have fun
Pray- Lord, show me the way.
Take one step at a time. It’s an uphill battle when you’ve been consumed for so long, but you’re not stuck. You can set yourself free.
You are entirely up to you.