Sunday, May 15, 2011

To Star in Your Own Tragedy of Woe

I was outside, taking a walk with my dogs on one of the most beautiful spring days in recent memory and I happened to run into a friend of mine.  In my view, one of this person's most amazing gifts in life is the ability to zap other people with the most thought provoking life observations that come completely out of left field.

Today's conversation went something like this:

Him:  Boy it's a beautiful day today Diane, isn't it?

Me:  It really is.

Him:  Isn't it amazing though how there are so many people around here that can find something to
complain about on a day like today?

Me:  I know...

Him:  It seems like it's always something with them.

Me:  I know.  It's like over the winter people complain that they were too cold and had to shovel snow.
They couldn't wait for spring.  Now they complain their allergies are bothering them.  It never ends.

Him:  In a few weeks they'll be too hot.

Me:  Exactly. 

Him:  I just try to keep away from people like that.

Me:  Me too....I just don't deal with them.

Him:  These people who complain all the time, it's like the are staring in their own tragedy of
woe.  Could you imagine having to watch yourself be the star in your own life tragedy?  Repeating
the same thing, the same complaint, the same negative experience or story...over and over to everyone you after day?  Having to listen to that?  That would be just awful.

Me:  Yep, it would be...but there are plenty of people out there who do it..constantly.

My conversation with my friend obviously stuck in my head.  "Tragedy of Woe".  Having to watch and listen to yourself... like a play..."over and over".  yeesh

This is an interesting topic for me because I, unfortunately, grew up around a mother who complained constantly.  Still does.  Day in and day out...over and over...the same dull beat, the same stories, the same delusional, non-consequential minor tragedies that only she seems to have to experience during this lifetime.
I guess I must have found her behavior it so innately revolting when I was growing up, that I  basically turned out pretty much opposite.  Unless there is something serious going on, I'm usually pretty happy.  Focused normally, but happy... or at least I try to keep an even beat.  I make it a point to not complain to others about the petty, mundane bothers in my life....and I don't like to stick around to hear theirs.

I have always known that spiritually it's wrong to burden other people with your problems, but I'm surprised how many people don't understand that concept.  Seeking support and guidance for a serious issue or during times of crisis is one thing.  Constantly venting your woes and letting your funk rub off on other people...leaving them in a depressed state after you visit with them... is quite another thing.

In the 2010 Holiday Gift Picks for our blog, I recommended a book called "Golden Book of Reconstruction Letters" by George Llewellyn - originally published in 1941.  Although there are many valuable passages and words of wisdom in this great little book, there is a wonderful affirmation on constructive thought that sums all of this up perfectly.  Wise words to keep in mind.

Remember to smile and enjoy your day!

                                            ~ diane fergurson

(Constructive Thought)

Talk Happiness.   The world is sad enough
Without your woes.  No path is wholly rough;
Look for the places that are smooth and clear.
And speak of those to rest the weary ear
Of earth, so hurt by one continuous strain
Of human discontent, and grief and pain!

Talk Faith.   The world is better off without
Your uttered ignorance and morbid doubt.
If you have no faith in God, or man or self,
Say so.  If not, push back upon be shelf
Of silence all your thoughts till faith shall come.
No one will grieve because your lips are dumb.

Talk Health.   The dreary, never-changing tale
Of mortal maladies is worn and stale.
You cannot charm, or interest, nor please,
By harping on that minor chord--disease.
Say you are well, or all is well with you.
And God shall hear your words and make them true.
                                                    - Author Unknown


  1. I think sometimes we complain, because so much concentrate on small things, that we loose the big picture of what's happiness.
    Thanks for this nice post.

  2. I think the motto hear, see and speak no weveil is a good one as it reminds us to stay uplifted and robust. Nothing good ever came from remaining in a negative state! Love this blog and will be reading - Alison

  3. Of course the kicker is that your friend was complaining about complaining people instead of enjoying the beautiful day, hmmmm..... and that is how us humans often are. "Present moment....wonderful moment" Thick Nhat Hanh
    Meditations for the Present Moment

    so easy to get stuck in our minds and miss the present moment.



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