Never ending UNhappiness?


#1

Hello and Good Afternoon Everyone!

This is my first post here on Catholic Forums and I welcome everyone’s advice and guidance.

I am a 26 year old female and I’ve been a Roman Catholic my whole life. Unfortunately I’ve spend the majority of my life miserable, unhappy and friendless.

I have a very hard time dealing with people. I am very critical of people which prevents me from meeting friends. I can’t help but critize and argue with them, even about the smallest things. I guess you can say I am spoiled and like everything to be MY way. :frowning:

What steps can I take to find it within myself to forgive and accept people for who they are instead of who I want them to be? How can I overlook a persons faults to reach the good within them so I can have better relationships?

Thanks so much for your time!!


#2

Let every day be a practice in humility. Learn to cede to others and put yourself last. Also, know the difference between issues of morality and issues of preference. Preferential things can be ignored. Oftentimes people place too much importance on preferential things, and not enough focus on issues of morality, right and wrong - the things which surround our faith.


#3

You answered your own question. Stop acting like a spoiled brat, stop arguing, stop criticizing people, stop being generally unpleasant and bad company.

Step 1-Smile more.
Step 2-Hold your tongue. Your now where near as witty as you think (None of us are) so don’t criticize others.
Step 3-Happiness is a choice. You choose to be happy. To many people wallow in doom and sadness and expect people to love being with them. It’s a stupid idea. Friendly people have the most friends because they are happy and , well, friendly.

At least you know why your miserable. If you want to change, take the effort and do so.


#4

Dawn,

I just did a Blog post today on my Project Management web site that might give you some guidance when faced with issues.

Those Monday morning project blues

Don’t you just hate it when things are going bad, it’s early on a Monday and you already have five difficult moaning emails in your inbox and it seems the world is ganging up on you personally. Then some Pollyanna comes by your cube/office, notices your downer and retells, with great joy, “When life serves you lemons, make lemonade”.

Stifling your desired reaction, which may give you some serious jail time, you mumble something prophetic and continue to stare at the “things that went wrong with the project” over the weekend on the computer screen.

There are times when we have to dig deep for inspiration, particularly as sometimes these cries for help are being made to you, because they know:

[LIST]
*]“You can take it”
*]Mike/Michelle will solve the problem, he/she always does
*]If in doubt, kick the problem up the management chain, in this case you
*]They know and trust you
[/LIST]
It may well be that last bullet is a more frequent thought than the others, however human nature will send our mind on a downer first, and we make assumptions about the reasons/motives behind an issue, rather than just looking at the issue itself.

Now, not to dive into the psychology of managing projects, but we all face times when the emotional impact of change or behavior is often greater than the issue itself. So what to do when faced with this “Monday morning project”. Here’s my list:

[LIST=1]
*]Get a cup of coffee, cigarette, walk around the building, if you are seriously upset before coming back to the problem
*]When your blood pressure is back to normal (whatever that may be for you), review the issues and what caused them
*]Determine if they are interrelated, for a serious project crisis to arise, there are usually a combination of factors/issues involved, so if you can solve the issue for 1 or 2 this often reduces the chance of a chain wreck
*]Prioritize your action plan to deal with each one, and then communicate with team members to start a plan of action
*]When your plan of action is in motion, make a huge effort to separate emotional trauma and consequences from the action. Otherwise you may just be escalating the problem without know it
*]Stay in touch for each of these hot items until they are cool once more
*]Reward yourself for being such a great project manager
[/LIST]

I facilitate a Smart Recovery Rehab Class in Prison each week, and I cannot tell you have much I learn about “what not to wear” in terms of behavior there.

Bottom line is this:

**Beliefs **lead to **thoughts **which lead to **behaviour **

You can break this cycle by changing behavior, which will change people’s reaction to you, which will change you thoughts.

Obviously God can be of great assistance in this process.


#5

I am being totally honest and sincere when I ask this. Would you be able to get some social skills coaching? What you describe may be a result of your not having the same social brain wiring as others. I can elaborate if you need me to.


#6

I really appreciate the honesty from both of you. :)

I don't know what made me this way. I do not think I am better than anyone by any means. I actually have very low self esteem and I am my own worst critic. I spend nearly every waking moment either critizing myself or other people. :banghead: There have been numerous times where I have told myself to just bite my tongue - or to just give people a chance and within the blink of an eye I become fixated on finding the negative in them. It must be my terrible way of trying to make myself feel better about MYself. There is nothing more in life that I want than to stop this behavior. This goes against everything I was taught, not only from my parents but from the Bible. It just makes for a very lonely life.


#7

I don’t think anyone has instructed us better than Ste. Therese. see Christ in everyone, treat everyone you encounter, especially the most difficult, as you would Christ himself. Look for ways to serve those people, especially the most difficult, in ways that they never will know come from you.


#8

When I was in college my spiritual director gave me an assignment that you might find helpful. He told me to go to a public place, like a mall or a park, and do some people watching. I was to imagine each person who passed by with a halo above their heads, like saints have in Icons. I was to look at them and see that they are made in the image and likeness of God. When I am feeling frustrated with an individual, or even with the world in general, I return to this exercise and it helps remind me of the fact that all people, no matter how I feel about them, are children of God. That realization helps me get past the frustration and annoyance and see the good in people.


#9

OK here are some ideas to begin with:

[LIST]
*]Join a local Toasmasters group. Public speaking is a great confidence booster
*]Find a team sport or ministry that you think you would enjoy
*]Pick a sport or activity you always wanted to learn
*]Decide what sort of person that you think God would love to make you and start a plan to become that person. He will help!
[/LIST]

In the meantime here is my post for my Project Management web site which is all about Outlook on life. (There, you get to see it first here!)

Praying for you Dawn.

***Winning ways with people: Your outlook on life! ***
Don’t you know those folks who just light up a room when they walk in. As soon as they stroll in something changes. A dynamic is present, even if they don’t immediately burst into a song and dance routine, expectation is in the air.

So how do I get some of those winning ways as a project manager? Over the years, and interaction with hundreds of project managers I have come to learn one thing.

**There is not just one thing! **

Because this could turn into a big topic I am going to start out with maybe the most important factor in becoming influential with others.Your Outlook! Now I am not talking about the email program you might be using to read this copy but rather your entire outlook on life. We hear so much about personality, courage, persistence, quality and other great human traits. However, it’s usually when we are faced with challenges that we really find what we are truly made. The feelings of butterflies when walking to the podium for the first time, the job interview, marriage proposal, final tests … all make up our Outlook on life. Are we prepared? Do we have confidence? Did we invest enough energy in advance?

One of the most annoying factors in my early career was meeting someone with a great Outlook; brimming with confidence, but what appeared to be little in the way of skills to back them up. Little did I know that the real skill they possessed as a result of this great Outlook and confidence was leadership!

Even if you don’t like your Outlook, or want to change it. Guess What! It’s possible. You too can become a lion in your own environment. Regal, powerful and full of leadership. (Hopefully you don’t pick up some of the other characteristics of a lion.) Here’s what’s on my list of a good Outlook.

[LIST]
*]Looks at the big picture as well as the details that matter
*]Cares about the people as well as the outcome
*]Willing to take risk when needed, but knows how to reduce it quickly
*]Integrates the experience of the entire team, not just their knowledge
*]Wants the overall result to be successful, not for themselves but for the team or mission. (Really!)
*]Will not allow others to derail the project for personal or other motives
*]Confidence with optimism, but does not set unrealistic deadlines or goals
*]Knows how to communicate like a satellite dish
*]There, now do you feel better. Next time you go into your project, pick one of these items and add it to your list. I try it all the time on mine!
[/LIST]


#10

Forgiveness is a gift that you give yourself. Forgive and forget immediately. “Moving on” takes practice. Don’t dwell on failure, accept failure as a way to grow strength. Fail with grace :slight_smile:

In general, there are leaders and followers in every situation and each will either have a naturally positive outlook with a “glass half full” perspective (or the opposite).

Owning my own businees, I’m a bit of a control freak but not a micro manager (thank the Lord). I feel that I need to look for problems so that I can determine how to guide myself and others around me. I can become over critical when I’ve taken the time to access and discuss problems beforehand and people fail to follow my guides for success.

It took (and takes) practice, but eventually my attitude ranged out make peace with failure in others. To stop taking other people’s inventory.


#11

Perhaps you have some sort of undiagnosed issue, for example depression, some sort of issue that creates anxiety in social situations causing this behavior, etc.

I suggest some professional evaluation. There is nothing wrong with getting help for a problem. Spiritual guidance and suggestions can be helpful, but if your issue has its roots in some other area you need some diagnosis.


#12

Your post really has me interested and I would love to hear more about social brain wiring/skills.

Once again everyone, I really do appreciate you taking the time to respond to my post. I’ve never had anyone, let alone a group of people who would dedicate just a few minutes out of their lives to advise me on mine. Thanks again!! :slight_smile:


#13

[quote="sdawnstiles, post:12, topic:237574"]
Your post really has me interested and I would love to hear more about social brain wiring/skills.

Once again everyone, I really do appreciate you taking the time to respond to my post. I've never had anyone, let alone a group of people who would dedicate just a few minutes out of their lives to advise me on mine. Thanks again!! :)

[/quote]

Flattery will get you everywhere. Tell me again how wonderful and smart I am, and I just might let you in on all my secret ways to win friends and influence people! ;);););)


#14

Hahah!!! Beneath my criticism I really am a sincere person!! :smiley:


#15

Start with Gratitude…for everything an everyone. It is good that you know your faults and shortcomings for it is the first step in changing. We all have our faults and shortcomings. My sister is exactly like you and it is immensely difficult for me to love and help her in her situation. Yet, I try and pray for her conversion.
Pray daily and every time, not just in church (if you go, but if you don’t, start doing so) but every time. Look at it like talking to Jesus and really come to Him with all your burdens for He will give you rest. Start with small baby steps – ask God to give you the grace to see Jesus in everyone and be humble. Forgive others as you would forgive yourself. Be kind to yourself so you can be kind to others. Again, be thankful for your blessings and try not to live for yourself alone. The secret of true happiness lies in giving of oneself.
Despair not, though. Remember that God loves you for who you are, but He wants to be more Christlike. Be patient with yourself as He is with you. Hang in there.:thumbsup:


#16

I recommend that you buy the book : “The power of Positive Thinking” by Vincent Norman Peale and if you need a spiritual book , I recommend you read “The Way” By Saint Jose Maria Escriva.

Just remember :

Smile and the whole world will smile at you. Frown and you frown alone.
and
If you don’t have anything good or nice to say, better not say anything at all.


#17

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