THE SELF-POISONER: PATTERNS OF SELF-INDUCED TOXICITY – GRIEVANCE COLLECTORS

Many people seem to have lives in which nourishing experiences are totally missing. Their emotional lives are largely limited to habitual complaints about their misfortunes. During the infrequent periods when they are not focusing on their grievances, they go into trancelike depressions. For them, aliveness is associated with toxic emotional attitudes. It is as if this poisonous behavior had some sweetness—for without it they are lifeless.
An example is the person who reacts with rage when he encounters injustice. As his anger rises, his aliveness returns. The more he feels justified in his anger, the more he glows in self-righteousness. If he is an employer, he may dump his grievances on the mistakes of his employees, but rarely on a customer t)r someone who has power over him. In other instances, his rage is directed against abstractions such as society, politics, or world problems. He distorts these activities into a pattern of scapegoating and impotent anger so he can feel alive.
The grievance collector feeds on the unpleasant in numerous ways. It becomes his way of life. These are people who become uncomfortable and awkward in joyful, happy situations. They are embarrassed and flustered when confronted with pleasantness.
The pay-off for those who collect grievances is that in so doing they avoid the risk of initiating any spontaneous behavior of their own.
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THE SELF-POISONER: PATTERNS OF SELF-INDUCED TOXICITY – GRIEVANCE COLLECTORSMany people seem to have lives in which nourishing experiences are totally missing. Their emotional lives are largely limited to habitual complaints about their misfortunes. During the infrequent periods when they are not focusing on their grievances, they go into trancelike depressions. For them, aliveness is associated with toxic emotional attitudes. It is as if this poisonous behavior had some sweetness—for without it they are lifeless.An example is the person who reacts with rage when he encounters injustice. As his anger rises, his aliveness returns. The more he feels justified in his anger, the more he glows in self-righteousness. If he is an employer, he may dump his grievances on the mistakes of his employees, but rarely on a customer t)r someone who has power over him. In other instances, his rage is directed against abstractions such as society, politics, or world problems. He distorts these activities into a pattern of scapegoating and impotent anger so he can feel alive.The grievance collector feeds on the unpleasant in numerous ways. It becomes his way of life. These are people who become uncomfortable and awkward in joyful, happy situations. They are embarrassed and flustered when confronted with pleasantness.The pay-off for those who collect grievances is that in so doing they avoid the risk of initiating any spontaneous behavior of their own.*64\350\8*

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