In life, we're bound to meet someone who makes us scratch our heads at their own destructive nature. These people seem to be hellbent on chasing away any enjoyment that they have and sometimes even inflicting pain upon themselves. Ultimately, I believe personality types like this do this for one of two reasons:
2. To punish themselves.
Now, this article is not to deal with the first option as that's a topic for another article. There are a number of ways to gauge whether the person is doing it for the former reason or the latter. Most people are able to spot which it is if they're consciously aware of what they're looking for.
Anyway, I want to take a moment to explain why any individual would ever look to punish themselves to those of us who don't understand the behavior -- those of us who haven't experienced it and those of us who have (as even people who do this rarely understand why.) I'm going to use an analogy to conjure the image into your head of what exactly the thought process is.
Imagine you're drawing in your sketchpad. You are beautifully crafting a masterpiece; each stroke and convex is uniquely your own. Every curvature of your magnum opus is a complete vision! Your hand weaves around, forming what seems to be a perfect circle, when... you sneeze. Your arm contorts from the sneeze, leaving a huge gash from your sharpie up the paper and sprinkles of saliva and snot have drizzled all over the page.
Your drawing is ruined!
In a fit of rage, you begin to scribble all over the page, engulfing the entire page in a sea of black ink and crumple up the paper to start again. The problem is... that was your only sheet of paper and you'll never get another one.
As you can probably guess by now, the sheet of paper is your life. The drawing, your existence. Normally, we all crumple up the paper and start our drawings again, but for life, there's no reset button. Individuals who don't fall under the attention category tend to suffer from some form of post traumatic stress that differentiates them from attention seekers. Perhaps they were the victim of a heinous crime (rape, torture, et cetera), served in the armed forces, et al. It usually comes down to a feeling of them being completely unable to reflect on their lives and not return to that point in their lives and realizing that their past has been blemished.
Now, for most of us, we can look back on our lives and realize that it's not perfect. But one example would be of a man who went to jail for a crime he didn't commit and was habitually raped in jail. A feeling of loss in his own pride would overtake him; he would always feel degraded and "tainted" if you will by that particular event.
No drawing is perfect. A sheet of paper will always attract at least one particle of dust over time. But in circumstances like this, you have not only the gash, but the drizzling of the sneeze to run ground control on. For most people, they feel as though the only way of dealing with this "disgrace" is by blacking it all out like I said before.
The rationale behind this is simple, but overlooked. Because the page is blemished, it doesn't deserve to exist in its current form. A lot of people will probably come to the conclusion that it's due to wanting to erase what's been done and that may partially be the rationale, but if you think to your own emotions in that parable, you'll realize it has more to do with rage than anxiety. People who have suffered great hardships are wounded by them and usually don't have a great support system to help them through it, so they tend to feel responsible for them. Maybe not logically, but emotionally. So, they feel as though they don't deserve happiness.
There's no easy solution for, well, anything. Though, there are often simple solutions that we overlook. The snot's always gonna be on your page, as is that line. However, it's up to you if you want to blacken the entire page or turn each spot into a star and the gash into a lighthouse.
To those of you who have already blackened the page, whip out the whiteout and do something entirely new. No, your art won't be what you expected it to be, but you never know. It might even become something even better!
Yes, I know. I don't understand you or your problems.
Personally, I think if that's what's running through your mind, it's you who don't understand your own problems. And it's for that reason that I'm writing this article. With a good support system, anyone can turn their blunder into a lite bright presentation.
You can do two things with a negative. You can leave it a negative or turn it into a positive. Become a beacon for other people in your situation; let them know that if you can do it, so can they.
This has been a cheesy self-help guide courtesy of the magnificent Ripplemagne. We hope you enjoyed my prophetic wisdom. Thank you and goodnight.