Two Solid Steps to Help You Stop Your Pity Party Right Now

by | Apr 29, 2019 | Woman

If you’ve been alive longer than 15 minutes, you’ve probably had something horrible happen to you. I’m pretty sure we all have.

And I’m sorry. I wish bad things didn’t happen, and I wish it hadn’t happened to you. Part of me wants to wrap you in cotton and bubble wrap and keep you safe in a closet so nothing else can hurt you.

But really—what kind of life is that?

No, as long as you’re alive on this planet, there are going to be troubles and trials and bumps and bruises. Even Jesus told us, “In the world you will have tribulation” (John 16:33b). Thankfully, He followed that statement up with “But be of good cheer. I have overcome the world.” That’s good news!

It’s easy, though, to feel sorry for ourselves in the midst of adversity and painful events, isn’t it? In fact, self-pity can be our automatic reaction to trouble unless we know how to recognize and stop it. “Poor me!” can easily become our habitual thought.

But here’s what I’ve learned: I can’t have faith and self-pity at the same time. So it’s time to shut down the pity party and rise up in faith! Because faith is what I need in order to come out the other side of any trouble (1 John 5:4). (Read: “When Everything Hits the Fan“).

So how do we rise above self-pity and get into faith when awful circumstances come our way? Here are two steps:

1. Recognize it. Self-pity can be sneaky. It can pop into my mind (and stay there) before I even know I’m feeling sorry for myself. Recognize any of these?

  • Nobody cares or understands.
  • It’s not working (variation: How come it always works for them but not for me?).
  • Why doesn’t someone help me?
  • Why does God require more of me than other people?
  • It’s so hard! (variation: No one has it as hard as I do).
  • I do things for others, but no one ever does anything for me.
  • It would be better if I died.
  • I can’t do anything right.
  • I’ve done everything I know to do, but it hasn’t worked.
  • I hate my life! Everything is wrong, nothing is right.
  • I’m so tired. I can’t take it anymore.

Kind of painful to look at, aren’t they? But I can’t overcome those thoughts unless I identify them! If I leave them alone in my mind, they become strongholds.

Thankfully, God says I have weapons to pull down strongholds: “casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Cor. 10:5). Which leads to step 2:

2. Change focus. The truth is, self-pity is a choice. I am the one who chooses my thoughts. Feeling sorry for myself makes me completely self-absorbed, and that’s a life of misery. If I’m perpetually sorry for myself, no one wants to be around me, and I’m useless to the kingdom of God.

Webster’s definition of self-pity is “a self-indulgent dwelling on one’s own sorrows or misfortunes.” Dwelling on our troubles makes us prisoner to them. And it causes us to lose sight of our gifts and callings as well as the needs of others.

How can we snap out of it once we recognize it? The only thing that’s worked for me is to change focus. Psalm 121:1 says, “I will lift up my eyes to the hills, from where does my help come?” Look up! My strength comes from God! Instead of dwelling on the troubles, I’ve had to change my thoughts to dwell on God—His greatness and everything He’s done for me in Christ (Read: “Get Encouraged and Stay Encouraged”).

For me, that means daily reading His Word, meditating on His promises. Yes, that takes effort. But it’s so much better than holding a daily pity party!

So when hard things happen, I go ahead and cry and mope for a short time—but I don’t let it consume my life. I can’t change the past, but when I refuse self-pity, I can change my future by keeping my eyes on God who has brought me the victory.

You can too! {eoa}

Karen Jensen Salisbury has been in ministry over 30 years. Formerly a lead pastor, then an instructor at Rhema Bible College, she is currently an itinerant minister and author of several books. Connect with her on her website,, on Facebook, Instagramor Twitter.

This article originally appeared at


Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


This Coach Can Help You Destroy Your Addiction to Pornography

This Coach Can Help You Destroy Your Addiction to Pornography

Let’s talk about a subject most people want to avoid. Let’s talk about pornography. According to Covenant Eyes, statistics show that 28,258 users are watching pornography every second, and 20% of mobile online searches are for porn. Among Christians, 20% of youth...

The Real Truth About the Marriage of Politics and Faith

The Real Truth About the Marriage of Politics and Faith

As I look back, I realize that God has given me a career path with some rather unique experiences. I have built bridges at the intersection of faith and government my whole life, and I have learned that serving people through a role in government can be just as...

Joyce Meyer: Winning the Battle Against Satan in Your Mind

Joyce Meyer: Winning the Battle Against Satan in Your Mind

If you have received Christ as your Savior, then you have an enemy. Did you know that? I know some people feel uncomfortable talking about the devil, but he is real and it’s important for us to face the truth about him so we can have a victorious life in Christ. Now,...

It’s Time to Rebuild Love and Unity in the Church—Part 2

It’s Time to Rebuild Love and Unity in the Church—Part 2

Note: As we move towards Yom Kippur/Day of Atonement, Grant Berry, a Messianic believer, speaks about the deeper repentance needed in the Messianic part of the family. As you have read part one of this article during the month of Av and are now reading part two in the...

Will Many of the Elect Really Be Deceived by the Antichrist?

Will Many of the Elect Really Be Deceived by the Antichrist?

The most sobering and troubling statement in the Olivet Discourse is where Jesus says, “For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect” (Matt. 24:24). This statement cries out for an...


Prophetic Lessons in the Hurricane-Force Storms of Life With Hurricane Ian slamming Florida, it's a time to reflect on the storms of life. As I was preparing for the hurricane, I documented some thoughts about...
Why God Cares About Your Physical Health

Why God Cares About Your Physical Health

God doesn’t care if I am fat. He wants me to enjoy my life. He wants me to live, love and be happy. Food makes me happy so I’m just doing what He wants me to do. That was just an excuse and at its core it is untrue. God really doesn’t care about our outward...

An Unborn Baby’s Heart Is Beating—Stop Denying It

An Unborn Baby’s Heart Is Beating—Stop Denying It

Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams turned heads last week in Atlanta when she defiantly announced during a political event that an unborn baby doesn’t have a heartbeat at six weeks gestation. “There is no such thing as a heartbeat at six weeks,” said...

Prophecy: We Are in a Season of Blessings

Prophecy: We Are in a Season of Blessings

We are kingdom citizens, and not of this world. We don’t abide by this world’s economy and the natural things that happen. Repeatedly, over the last four weeks, I’ve been hearing not to look at the circumstances of this world. We are not of this world. Get your eyes...

Pin It on Pinterest