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Do you want to know how to stop self-pity and face the pain? It’s kind of embarrassing to admit you are wallowing in your hurts, huh? I mean, who wants to admit that this ongoing conversation in their head is not too healthy?

Perhaps you replay every scenario, wondering how someone else could be insensitive or how _____ mistreated you. Or that you are never going to do ___________because of _________.

Sadly, your mind gets stuck on the same people and the same dialogue until it is an obsession. Before you know it, you have given your power to another person without realizing it. Ugh!

Truthfully, self-pity can be addicting.

Once you start, it is hard to stop unless you decide to stop consciously. You know it feels good, or you wouldn’t do it, right?

Thankfully, I have learned how to stop this bad habit, and you can too.

This post will show you how to stop self-pity and be a fearless Christian. You don’t have to be caught in a cycle of unforgiveness, fear, or anger. With these seven tips, you can be free again.

Before learning how to stop self-pity, let’s examine what causes it. You may be surprised.

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What Causes Self-Pity?

You might think self-pity is natural and occurs when something goes wrong. However, this is not the case, or we would all be caught in a self-defeating cycle of self-pity.

No, self-pity is a choice not to let go when hurtful things happen or you feel the cards stacked against you.

There is a natural process for grieving a loss that takes time. Healthy people grieve, feel the pain, and push through it until they reach the other side. Then, look for the positives and work around the negatives.

At the same time, those caught in self-pity subconsciously decide to feel sorry for themselves somewhere along the way and stay stuck. Eventually, it turns self-destructive.

What Does Self-Pity Look Like?

Frankly, self-pity looks gross. I did it for many years and had no idea how bad it was until I saw other people doing it.

You are constantly preoccupied with yourself and the past, which affects your present and future. No one enjoys being around you when you do this.

You become so passive in your thought life that you are expecting someone else to rescue you or understand your pain before you can move on, never realizing only you have the power to pull yourself out (with God’s help).

One of the signs of being stuck in self-pity is that you are constantly waiting for others to join your pity party because only then will you feel validated. Of course, no one wants to join the party, and there are never enough people to validate you.

When no one joins in the wallowing, you are angry, which, in turn, causes more self-pity. It is truly a cycle of unforgiveness and self-absorption all rolled into one. And that’s how we stay stuck.

How to Stop Self-Pity and Be a Fearless Christian

If you want to know how to stop self-pity, check out these seven things you can do to be a fearless Christian and face the pain. It takes some discipline, but if you follow these tips, you will see great results over time.

By the way, I still do these things to keep my mind from falling into despair when something difficult happens.

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1.)  Stop ruminating is how to stop self-pity

If you want to know how to stop self-pity, quit repeatedly playing the same situation in your head. You know, those arguments in your mind that keep going in circles… Realize that you are allowing others to steal your joy and peace when you do this.

Don’t let other people hijack your brain. Make it a point to catch yourself when it starts.

Picture a stop sign in your head blinking red to break your train of thought. You have the mind of Christ!

1 Corinthians 2:16 says, “For who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.”

RELATED: How to Stop Negative Self-Talk: 6 Tips to Break the Habit Today

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2). Stop complaining is how to stop self-pity

The next phase in the self-pity cycle is the issue of complaining. We engage others outside our brain in our self-pity story.

We want them to join the bandwagon so we feel better about our obsessing and ruminating. This kind of validation only feeds the monster, yet you fear stopping because you don’t know how else to deal with your pain.

If you want to know how to stop self-pity, close your mouth and breathe—no more complaints (whining) to those around you. It’s like a car spinning its wheels in the mud.

It may help to journal your feelings as a form of release. Or talk to an empty chair and say everything you need to say out loud. Perhaps even talk to a pastor or counselor if you need more help.

3.) Releasing the situation to God is how to stop self-pity

The most challenging step is to release everything to God instead of ruminating and complaining. It is a choice; you will probably never feel like doing this.

Visualize taking your situation to the cross and dropping it at Jesus’ feet. You will never heal yourself by looking to yourself (which is self-pity); your focus must change to Jesus, who He says you are, and what you can do.

He can handle the trauma you have experienced. He knows your hurts.

This is how to stop self-pity and be a fearless Christian.

Psalm 34:18 says, “The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”

Psalm 55:22 says, “Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.”

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4.) Forgiving is how to stop self-pity

Forgive yourself and others for anything still causing bitterness. Don’t leave anything on your side undone. You are only responsible for yourself, nothing more.

Release the right to hear “I’m sorry” from the other person. Even if they are never sorry, that doesn’t mean you can’t move on with your life with complete forgiveness.

It’s time to let go of the past, whatever happened.

Ephesians 4:32 – Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

RELATED: Supercharge Your Life When You Forgive Those Who Hurt You

5). Choosing gratitude is how to stop self-pity

Replace your self-pity with gratitude. Every time you start feeling sorry for yourself, start naming everything you are grateful for. Start a gratitude journal to help you remember the good things in your life.

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Turn every negative thought into something positive. Then, what comes out of your mouth will not be toxic. Instead, it will be uplifting and encouraging. We all enjoy being around positive people, not negative Nelly.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

RELATED: The Best Gratitude Activity to Do with Your Teen

6). Volunteering is how to stop self-pity

If you want to know how to get rid of self-pity, volunteer.  When you start helping others, you realize you are not alone in your pain. Satan loves to isolate and then pick us off one by one.

He wants you to think you are alone and the only one who feels this way. That somehow your pain is the exception to forgiveness and healing.

This is a lie!

Don’t let self-pity keep you from loving and helping those who are also hurting. Ironically, helping others heals you. This is one of those upside-down things in God’s economy.

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7.) Prayer and scripture is how to stop self-pity

As Christians, our first line of defense should always be prayer. If you want to stop self-pity, ask God to help you overcome it. Not one scripture says it is okay to stay stuck in pain. We grieve and then give it over to God.

If you want to stop lousy thinking, replace it with good thinking. Create mantras to repeat until you believe them.

Example: “God is good; I can trust Him with my pain. I release it to you.”

Get notecards and write relevant scriptures to combat self-pity and remind yourself of who you are in Christ. You are an overcomer, loved, accepted, healed, and saved from the torment of self-pity (Matt. 18).

Think about these verses when you want to wallow. Listening to encouraging and biblical podcasts, worship music, sermons, books, etc., will help you keep your mind off of yourself. This is a battle of the mind. It’s spiritual warfare!

This is how to stop feeling self-pity and be a fearless Christian!

Philippians 4:8 says,  “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

RELATED: 25 Different Methods of Prayer That Are Powerful

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How Do I Get Rid of Self-Pity?

If you want to know how to stop feeling self-pity, pray. It will help you break your bad habits and move on to better thinking. Here’s a sample prayer to get you started:

Dear God,

Thank you for loving and caring for me. You alone know my deep hurts, frustrations, and feelings of rejection regarding (the situation). I ask that you help me change what I can, forgive those who have hurt me, and release the rest to You.

Thank you for giving me the power to lay this problem down at the cross and no longer wallow in my pain.

When I am tempted to take it back, please remind me that You control the situation. I can rest in You. Thank you, Lord, that I can trust you to work in ways I never dreamed possible.

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Help me to put my mind at ease and claim Philippians 4: 8, which says to “think on things that are true, right, pure, noble, and lovely.”

Let my mind be fixed on You and Your healing words, not mine. If I need to think about the situation, give me the right thoughts, including a solution, but nothing more until then.

Please help me to praise you in this situation even though I don’t know how to solve it or let go. Thank you for allowing me to surrender my mind to You and align it with Christ. Help me to move on with my life. Restore to me the joy of your salvation.

In Jesus’ Name,
Amen

Don’t discount prayer. It is the best tool when learning how to stop self-pity. Every time you feel tempted to return to wrong thinking, start praying.

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how to stop self-pity; woman looking down while sittingHow to Stop Feeling Self-Pity?

If you want to stop feeling self-pity, change your thinking. Stop obsessing and ruminating. It is the most freeing thing you can do.

You no longer have to harbor anger, resentment, or bitterness in your heart. God wants His people to be free to do His work and not bound up in themselves.

Don’t wait until others (including the offender) validate your pain. No one except God will ever feel your pain as intensely as you or understand entirely.

It is time to overcome the pain using these seven truths and become a fearless Christian that God can use to do great things.

Did you learn how to stop self-pity? Comment below. 

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This book not only talks about my seven-year estrangement (and reconciliation) from my Christian family but also gives solid tips to help you with your family problems. Break free from your pain. Allow God to heal you no matter what has happened in your family of origin. There is hope when your family falls apart.

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Author

Julie is a wife, mom, teacher, author, and blogger. She writes about Christian family living, marriage, parenting with a touch of humor.

3 Comments

  1. Yes! I often say (and think): “Good things rarely happen by accident.” Being intentional is so important! And somsetimes you have to do these steps over and over for the same situation before you can even feel your heart begin to shift, but the Lord will help you get there.

  2. I love your posts. You could be talking about something serious and I still find myself smiling and chuckling over your sweet sense of humor that is sprinkled throughout your writings. So true! Being free from the sadness is so much better than wallowing! ❤

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