Most people have some of this sometimes, but some have this 24/7
Here are 9 aspects that display what this feeling-bad addiction looks like.
I Feel Bad All the Time
If you listen carefully, their complaint is not just about feeling bad all the time but a search for how I feel all the time! Every bad feeling must be paid attention to, and each is a disaster, an unsurmountable obstacle. The person is not in charge; the feelings are. Strangely, their feeling bad feels good. It’s familiar, it feels as being authentic, realistic, and honest.
At least in the West, there seems a conspiracy against feelings. Loads of smart people will tell you that thought is smart, and feelings are primitive, if not animalistic. Really, being in touch with one’s feelings and taking them into account is a great talent. Paying attention to bad feelings can propel your life forward, but not if you do that every day around the clock.
I Must do a Lot to Feel Good
If you listen carefully, their complaint is not only about having to make an effort to feel good but about having to make it constantly. Cigarettes, coffee, chocolate, etc. are just symptoms of the real addiction to how bad one feels. And so is the I’m-dropping-everything-right-now-to-talk-with-this-person. Every chance event that feels nice must be pursued at once.
No tolerance for feeling bad, no effort to make feeling subordinate to reaching long-term goals. Each necessary effort is an insult to their dignity and an infringement on their supposed natural right to feel good for free.
No Plans, Goals, or What to Live for
Nothing to live for. A victim of a Universe that showers them with ill feelings. Indifference to death or illness. As long as one can complain about life. They also can’t pursue what they want because there is nothing they would want, they’ll tell you. Of course, that’s not true. They complain about their life being a mess. But they can’t flip to: Then, my goal is to have a good life. It has to come to them; they can’t imagine creating it. As soon as they start, they will suddenly feel terrible and must stop.
No Commitment, no Effort
All depends on how I feel now. If I don’t feel good, my emergency job is to wallow in that and push away everything else on the program. What only counts is that I suffer, need to complain, and will have short-term relief.
My Life is a Mess
Nothing gets done. They seem lazy bums. Yet, they don’t feel lazy, but trapped in a bad world. If we’d overlook getting annoyed at them, would we feel pity for the mess they make of their lives? That is hard because it’s so obviously self-inflicted. But this is not obvious to them. Would it help to pity them? To say: Poor you; how terrible; how awful; where do you find the strength to continue to live? They seem to pity themselves a lot.
But the feel-bad addict doesn’t see an alternative—doesn’t even want to consider an alternative. Exactly like moths must fly into a flame, they must sabotage any strategy that would build them a good life.
Something Must be Wrong with the World
Seeking the mistake outside oneself is a supreme way to stay stuck. The only effort is to seek new people, environments, vibes, or communities that would set you free. There is no such thing because you create the bad feelings; the reasons you allot to them are made-up and shallow.
In truth, we are the ones who generate our bad feelings when our hope is up that someone will help us with old trauma. Bad feelings are a good sign. But they refer to past trauma, not to present reality, generally. Sometimes it comes a little from what goes on now, but the brunt is from yesteryear.
A Sign of Our Times
So many people can’t make any effort for the future. Everything has to be easy and produce success right now. Using a can opener is too much. If the can can’t be pulled open, forget it. A fruit to peel won’t be eaten. As Calvin (6-year-old) exclaimed: “30 seconds in the microwave? I don’t have that kind of time. I’m a busy man.” Still, unfortunately, this is normal and not so debilitating. But for the real 24/7 feel-bad addict, this is in the extreme.
This is a Loss of Our Human Strength
Animals are programmed to run after what feels nice and run away from what feels bad. But, humans can decide to use our Free Will and prioritize our principles and plans. To hell with the bad feelings, I’ll do what I want!
When we only do what feels nice, we’ll feel free, but we really are just a slave to our emotions. Freedom is to follow your heart, despite any mood.
Prognosis and Hope
I’m unsure if there’s hope. A solution would be to try goals and commit to them until they find a better one. Then, the ill feelings are to be overcome and not so vital. But even the idea of taking responsibility and committing produces bad feelings and is rejected. An addiction to feeling bad.
Maybe pitying them would help. Exaggerating their self-pity. “No, this is not terrible; this is unbearable. You’re not depressed; you sound like a living corpse. It’s not merely having bad luck; you seem deprived of hope or consolation. The vague hopes you cling to are ever false and mirages. Not that I don’t take you seriously; I’m acknowledging your suffering and taking that seriously—somebody should.” Would they then start crying or laughing and understand that there must be another way than just this?