Thursday, February 10, 2011

Suck It Up!

WARNING: This post may be offensive!

I am naturally a compassionate and sympathetic person. My heart aches for others....even in movies (which is a little ridiculous). I have seriously SOBBED (to the point of hyperventilating) on more than one occasion because of a sad plot (The Notebook, Freedom Writers, HardBall, even Free Willy!).  I have cried for American Idol contestants with heartwarming stories. I have cried because of Hallmark commercials. And you might as well forget it if I'm watching Home Makeover...

I think I just put myself in others' shoes and imagine how I would feel in those situations.  And, I just feel sorry for people. (This is my preface to the actual purpose for this post, which begins NOW!)

However, my sympathetic and compassionate nature has recently taken a little turn....well, more like a 180.  As I said in my Meet Me Blog Party post, I deleted my Facebook account until I get caught up on my Bible study. Don't get me wrong, I don't spend hours a day on FB or anything, but even if I browse for 30 min a night instead of studying the Word, that is unacceptable. So, that is my obviously my main purpose for deactivating my account. Another big reason is the constant complaining/negativity from people's status updates. I was SO annoyed with it that it made the choice to delete that much easier. How annoying for people to list their every "woe is me" sob story for the world to read. (I forewarned ya...I will probably be offensive, so ya better turn back now if you're easily offended!).  I am not trying to be a hypocrite here. Jonathan and I BOTH have our fair share of pity party days. And I'm sure if I looked back I could find plenty of status updates or blog entries from myself that are negative and complaining.  BUT....with my new attitude, I am working to make sure you won't see anything of the sort come out of my mouth- for several reasons.

#1 We are meant to be ENCOURAGERS. How can we be encouraging to others if we are too busy wallowing and loathing in our own self-pity?

"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen." -Ephesians 4:29

"The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life." -Proverbs 10:11

"Therefore encourage each other with these words." -1 Thessalonians 4:18

#2 Our situations/circumstances are typically results of OUR own choices. I know a guy who chose to leave his job to take a more difficult, stressful position AND took a pay cut in the process. And to no one's surprise, he wants to complain about it. Seriously? HE CHOSE to do that. He KNEW the pay before hand. He KNEW the challenges this new job would entail. So shut up about it and suck it up! (Or at least don't complain to me, please.)  I just do NOT feel sorry for you if you are complaining about the results of a choice you made (and I'm speaking to myself here- I will NOT complain about my circumstances when it is ultimately from a choice I made, either).

#3 We can only CONTROL the CONTRALLABLES.  Great advice from my college softball coach. We couldn't control the weather or umpires or fans or field conditions, so WHY bother complaining about them? Is it going to accomplish anything? No. Is it going to change anything? No. So he taught us to focus on ourselves, our attitude, our effort, our play. And the same is true in life. If something is out of your control, give it to God and LEAVE it alone. Let Him deal with it. I heard a great quote on the radio the other day...."If we can trust God with our eternity, WHY don't we trust him with our PRESENT/daily situations?"  Easier said than done, of course, but man, isn't that an eye opener?

Please do not let me mislead you here. Tragedy is different. There is a MAJOR difference between tragedy and undesirable circumstances.  Tragedy truly deserves compassion, sympathy, prayer, support, and a grieving period (which may take years). I am still totally, 100% totally sympathetic toward people dealing with a tragedy of any kind. I feel for them, such a true sorrow, pain and hurt. I pray for them (and I don't just say it, I DO it).

"[God] comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God." -2 Corinthians 1:4

However....
If you do not like your job, SUCK IT UP. Be thankful you have a job. Or try to find a new one Don't constantly complain about how awful it is, how you don't make enough money, you don't like your co-workers/boss, or you don't like your hours. It's annoying. And I'm pretty sure you made the CHOICE to work there in the first place. (I know, sometimes you have to do something you don't like just to provide, but honestly, is your whining going to change your circumstances? I think not.)  Somehow even people who are fortunate enough to not have to work manage to complain about something. I think it's just bred in our society to find something to whine about.

If you do not like your spouse or something he/she does, SUCK IT UP.  They probably did it before you married them, right? Did you address it nicely and ask them to stop, explaining to them WHY it bothers you? If it's something they cannot/will not change, then you need to either a) get over it b) pray for them to change c) both. It's NOT okay to go bash your spouse to all your friends or your mom or sisters, and it's not even okay to fuss them out. Quit nagging. Have you thought about what YOU might can do to change the situation? Is there anything about yourself that your spouse doesn't like that YOU can change first?  You know, to be an example and show them it IS possible.  Ahhhh, perspective.

If you don't like your body, either SUCK IT UP or DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. Duh. Stop eating crap. Start exercising.  Did you know that the way you look is 10% genetics, 10% working out, and 80% what you eat?  And do you REALLY know what you eat?? Track your calories for a week with Livestrong.com (it's a major eye opener and GREAT tool). And then watch the documentary Food, Inc. Seriously, think about what we put in our mouths. Read the "Eat Clean" book or watch "Biggest Loser." We do have control of how we look.  We'd just rather eat a double cheeseburger and fries and then complain about our "rolls" later. Seriously? I'm not saying don't eat the cheeseburger. But please spare us and quit whining to everyone about "being fat" if you're going to eat trash.

If you don't like a specific situation....CHANGE IT. If you can't change it, CHANGE YOURSELF. Change your thoughts, attitudes, mindset, and perspective. It may come as a shock, but we DO have control over our minds. Amazing revelation, huh? Many of my students at school have really sucky home lives and come from bad cicumstances. It's truly heartbreaking.  You can ask my hubby, I've cried over them on many occassions.  However, I try to teach them that while "yea, their situation stinks, ultimately they have to make a choice to either allow their cicumstances to disable them OR to make themselves better in spite of their circumstances."  And I have to be an example in this (which is SUPER hard to do).

So, basically, if you have something negative to say, please don't say it to me. And if you hear/see me saying/writing/typing something negative, feel free to call me on it. I'm a work in progress. And I will fail, even as strongly as I feel about this at the current moment. But seriously, whining/complaining is NOT going to change anything. There are always LOTS of people who have it way worse than I do. Think for a moment about what Jesus endured during His final hours. Is that what I have to give Christ in return? God send His son to DIE on the cross to cover MY sins...and in turn I'm going to have regular pity parties??

 How about my praise, my joy, my love, my adoration.

Time to change our attitudes, friends!  And please don't be mad at me (hey, people pleaser side of me...there you are!)....this is more of a REMINDER TO SELF than anything. I'm not addressing anyone besides M-E here, so if you feel attacked, maybe it's your own personal convictions.

 Here's to being positive and optimistic!! :)

(P.S. Sorry for the sarcasm. It slips out occasionally.)


"Do ALL things without GRUMBLING or QUESTIONING." -Philippians 2:14

5 comments:

Emily said...

dang girl! who made you mad this morning??? hahaha! I guess the FB part of it is about who your friends are on fb too b/c my news feed is about 90% baby updates from mommies and I feel like sometimes saying: ok GREAT your kid drooled do you have to tell the world? haha. i think this is a good lesson for everyone though. we're in an age where we think we can say whatever we want and that people actually want to hear it. not really the case though is it? i personally wish i could blog about half the crap i think or feel or struggle with but i know it's not appropriate but i feel SO SO SO much better when i just vent it out to someone! i agree that you shouldn't tell the WORLD your business but i only deal by venting. i have to have at least one person i can tell EVERYTHING to in order to feel better...it used to be counselors which really is a great choice but tough to go with a toddler :)

Anonymous said...

haha...i know, looking back on what i wrote it seems like i was angry & bitter, huh? not really, just over everyone's negativity. i feel like it's EVERYWHERE, in every arena of my life, from all different people. and i just feel like everyone, including and especially me, needs to suck it up. we whine about everything instead of trying to change anything. i get venting, bc it totally makes me feel better to just get things off my chest sometimes (hello, blog!), but wouldn't it be great if we could just change our perpective? things really aren't that bad. in all reality, what the heck do we have to complain about? not much. mostly results from choices WE have made or things we can't control anyway. kinda pointless.

Dana said...

Well said! Here's to positive thinking and trusting God with all you have!

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Shannon said...

I happened upon your blog and am in love with it :) I decided to go back and read it from the beginning. I LOVE this post. Thanks for this!! It's refreshing and challenging. Thank you thank you thank you!!!