‘There is something terribly morbid in the modern sympathy with pain. One should sympathize with the colour, the beauty, the joy of life. The less said about life’s sores, the better.’ (Harry, The Picture of Dorian Gray)
I’m definitely not saying we shouldn’t empathise or sympathise – the character in this novel is well-known for his absurd/far-fetched theories – but as human beings we enjoy wallowing in self-pity far too much. And, what’s more interesting, there IS a morbid attraction to sitting and validating someone’s pain. It really is better to try and focus on the positives. I am still so guilty of this. Sometimes I focus on the guy that cut me off, meaning I don’t place even half the emphasis on the lady that graciously let me past. Sometimes my ‘bad day’ is actually considered ‘great day’ to 70% of the population.
If you allow the fact that somebody stole your food from the pantry to consume you, dedicate yourself to locating pen and paper and scrawling an angry note, you won’t even notice when someone does you a kind favour.
If you focus on how many exams you have left, you will ignore the fact that you are among the few people fortunate enough to study in what is considered to be the second most beautiful campus in the world.
If you spend your time frustrated because of a slightly catty comment, you will never notice how Postman Isaac is the nicest and loveliest human being ever. More people should be like him! His car has no air conditioning on the hottest day so far, yet you can bet he’ll be whistling and doing his job whilst simultaneously cheerily greeting people.
If you’re forever upset because you missed that one opportunity, you’ll never notice the other five open doors.
If you only see the oil spill, you’ll never recognise the gasoline rainbow.