Choo Choo the self-pity train is now leaving the station and if you’re onboard you know you wanna hop off ASAP. Preferably whilst it’s still at the platform, rather than have to ride that sucker all the way to it’s final destination: Pityville!
Unless you are Buddha reincarnate then the reality is you will always have days that suck, times in life where it feels like nothing is going your way, and periods where the STRUGGLE IS REAL. But the bottom line is that you don’t want to let those challenges pull you down any further into a dark pit of despair.
I know that managing to turn things around can feel like an uphill struggle when you’re lost in the moment. So here are 4 practical ways to step away from the self pity and feel better right now (because positive “fluff” just won’t cut it!)
1. Get Creative
Every single person on this earth is naturally creative. It is your birthright as a being of the Universe. Sounds a bit extreme? Well, it is true. You are literally made of stardust, as nearly all the elements in the human body were created in a star that once exploded. So I don’t wanna hear any crap about you not being able to draw very well as some kind of evidence against your innate creativity. Getting creative has a magical power to help you destress and reconnect with yourself. The form of creativity you choose doesn’t really matter, and you certainly don’t need to be Mozart, it’s about simply allowing a flow of expression. Whether it’s dancing, writing, painting, music, photography, crafts, baking or countless other creative pursuits, when you play you are allowing yourself to be the creator that life designed you to be!
2. Let it all out
Negative emotions may start as thoughts in the mind, but they quickly flow into body. When you are feeling bad take a moment to scan your body. Do you notice changes in your breath? Can you feel tension in your jaw, perhaps as a tightness of the muscles or maybe a sick feeling to your stomach? Your brain is constantly sending signals to your body, which means the body mind connection runs way deeper than many of us recognise. We can help relieve emotional frustrations through the power of the physical. Go for a walk or run, punch and scream into your pillows, or dance like a crazy person around your room. Finding a physical way to let go of your emotions can help shift your energy.
3. Gratitude Attitude
Gaining even just a little bit of perspective is the enemy of self-pity. It’s important to point out that this is NOT about chastising yourself for how damn ungrateful and spoilt you are when plenty of people have it worse than you (because that will do nothing other than make you feel even worse). It’s about focusing your attention back onto what IS going well in life. You don’t need to force this. I know it can be hard to look for what is right when we are lost in the haze of what is “wrong”. If it feels difficult to find anything, just keep looking, no matter how small or insignificant. Write down at least 5 things you genuinely feel lucky for in this moment, whether that’s your health, your children, or just that parking spot you managed to bag so easily this morning.
4. Do something nice for somebody else
Nothing shifts the focus of our self-pity quite like no longer making ourselves the focus! When we get lost in our own shit, sometimes one of the quickest ways to snap out of it is to be of service to somebody else. Research shows that kinder people live longer and healthier lives because of a real physical sensation known as a “helpers high”. Participants in one study reported a whole host of benefits like feeling stronger, more energetic, calmer, less depressed and with increased feelings of self-worth. So when you help somebody else, everybody wins!
If you’re looking for daily motivation, inspiration and practical tips and tools to navigate your way through this journey called life, then be sure to join my facebook group ‘Free & Fulfilled Living’.