By Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD
Everyone has felt desperately alone at some point in their lives. Especially at those times, it is easy to get mired down in self-pity. These feelings can be paralyzing. When you feel this way, the best antidote is to remind yourself that others share your experiences.
What I’m suggesting is not that old adage of “misery loves company” in the sense that you will feel better knowing that others are miserable, too. This implies that you want others to suffer. Instead, reminding yourself that others have similar struggles is a way for you to feel more like you belong to a greater humanity. Rather than feeling inadequate or flawed, seeing others as similar to you can validate your humanity. It can help you feel whole and acceptable – even with your struggles.
Unfortunately, self-pity can be a quagmire that sucks you down. If you need a branch to grab onto so you can pull yourself out, consider doing the following: