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Work to Grow

Mass shootings, a looming pandemic, nearly 800 million starving people in the world, and here I am, well-fed, housed, healthy, safe... and sad.

It’s hard for me sometimes not to be angry at myself for my anxiety and bouts of depression when I know that there are people out there suffering so, so, so, so, so much more than I ever will. I feel somehow unjustified to feel bad. I feel guilty for being joyously grateful that my life is so good. But that’s not fair. That’s not a healthy way of thinking. There will always be someone worse off than I am... and there will also always be someone better off than I am. And being self-loathing, jealous, or guilty because of those other people is stupid. It’s just plain senseless. The state of other people's lives is mostly out of my control, and me self-inflicting misery doesn't help anyone else feel better!

Instead of kicking myself, I should respect that my path is mine and mine alone. I do not need to compare my life to others’... not in a positive or in a negative light. I need to understand that fate and luck, fortune and wellbeing, comes and goes. I need to accept my own struggles and work to grow, rather than degrading or belittling my own state of being. And with a healthy mindset and a clear understanding of my good fortune I can look at the world with fresh eyes.

I can give - of time or money or effort - when I am capable of doing so, to help those less well-off than myself. And I can congratulate and be happy for those of more success or comfort than myself. I do not need to judge myself. And I absolutely do not need to justify my sorrow or my stress. I am entitled to my emotions.

What it comes down to is that I need to view myself as I do others around me - no matter status or struggle - with compassion and acceptance!

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