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Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Hey all,

Lately a few people have echoed my feelings that they are just feeling so weighed down, unworthy etc. It has been a rough time for me, as I feel I have lived better and done far more of the things I should than I have for the last 25 years (since my mission). I have spent the last couple of years really trying to get on track with the Lord's program for me, and yet although there have been days where the light has shown thru and been wonderful, I often feel more and more that I am failing, that I am not doing enough, unprofitable servant, etc. And I have seen several others post similar sentiments.

This morning I came across this by C.S. Lewis that made a lot of sense. Hope it helps others as it helped me.

Remember that, as I said, the right direction leads not only to peace but to knowledge. When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him. When a man is getting worse he understands his own badness less and less. A moderately bad man knows he is not very good; a thoroughly bad man thinks he is all right. This is common sense, really. You understand sleep when you are awake, not while you are sleeping. You can see mistakes in arithmetic when your mind is working properly: while you are making them you cannot see them. You can understand the nature of drunkenness when you are sober, not when you are drunk. Good people know about both good and evil: bad people do not know about either. -C.S. Lewis
Last edited by Original_Intent on Fri Sep 02, 2011 11:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Thank you....awesome quote!!!
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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That is so awesome! Joseph Smith said something to the effect that the closer a person gets to God, the more he views failing souls with compassion...something like that anyway. The Adversary hates it when we are becoming better...his best tool is to discourage us and tell us we aren't good enough and never will be, so why try.
Last edited by kathyn on Fri Sep 02, 2011 8:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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kathyn wrote:That is so awesome! Joseph Smith said something to the effect that the closer a person gets to God, the more he sees failing souls with compassion...something like that anyway. The Adversary hates it when we are becoming better...his best tool is to discourage us and tell us we aren't good enough and never will be, so why try.

Well said kathyn!
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Thank you for the quote, OI.
I feel there's a discontent spirit gnawing at me that i can't shake. Every morning i have to face it, and simple house work i often do seems impossible for me to do. It's like my head and heart knows i do good and should be happy, but i can't bring myself to feel happy. Maybe it's post pardum, and i've asked for a priesthood blessing to rid me of this. Thank you kathyn, your post change my perspective.
"When a nation follows unrighteous leaders, the righteous must suffer with the wicked." Ezra Taft Benson
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Soberminded, it does sound like possible post-partum depression. By all means, have a blessing, plus talk to some close friends and let them listen to you vent about whatever you want to discuss.. They don't need to give you any advice; they just need to listen. Just know that you are having some temporary depression but it will get better. Have your husband give you an hour a day to yourself (if at all possible) where you can read, listen to some relaxing music, go out and just take a walk, or go window-shopping. You need to refill your bucket since it is empty. That happens to me sometimes and I realize that I don't have any emotional strength left (my bucket is empty) and I have to refill it by having some "me" time. When I used to vent to my husband, he felt like he needed to fix things for me. I've finally taught him that I don't need him to "fix" anything. I just need him to listen and give me a hug. Usually I can feel better by giving service to others. But when I am drained and empty, I have nothing left and I need to step back and take a deep breath and do something that I enjoy for a few minutes and fill up my reserves again. You are so worth it!
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Well said to all of you above. I think there is a lot of negative vibes going around. I think Satan is really working on us. There are a lot of awful things happening in the world, and they all have an effect on us. But the Lord is always there for us. Remember----Right will win in the end, and the Lord will return to rule and reign.


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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Thank you, kathyn. My husband has been very kind and supportive. I'm afraid that what i feel is like the restless-leg syndrome. No matter what others do or say, my feeling refuse to feel content. It's like there are two of me; one feels happy and peace(I know this is me), and the other one is a discontent feeling that restrained me from doing my house work, making me feel frustrated. Maybe i am depressed. (This is too funny, I never thought of me to be depressed) This feeling is awful so I'll take your advice and get out and walk. I know it'll do me a lot of good. Thank you again. Every time i come to the forum, my bucket overflows as i increase in faith, testimony, and knowledge of this gospel from what you all share here. You all have broaden my knowledge of this gospel.
"When a nation follows unrighteous leaders, the righteous must suffer with the wicked." Ezra Taft Benson
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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soberminded wrote:Thank you for the quote, OI.
I feel there's a discontent spirit gnawing at me that i can't shake. Every morning i have to face it, and simple house work i often do seems impossible for me to do. It's like my head and heart knows i do good and should be happy, but i can't bring myself to feel happy. Maybe it's post pardum, and i've asked for a priesthood blessing to rid me of this. Thank you kathyn, your post change my perspective.


I have felt this way too this last year. I would feel this way as soon as I woke up, all day long, and when going to bed. It consumed my life completely. I felt the same way about housework, even in making sandwiches for my kids. Everything was overwhelming. A few days ago I sat down with my husband and poured my soul out to him greater than I had ever done before. I told him exactly how I felt about myself and my "non-existent" abilities. I told him I hated who I had become, not because I did anything wrong, but because I felt like I couldn't do most things right. I explained all of this in great detail to him. In response he told me all those things I had mentioned were physical and I had completely left out anything spiritual. He pointed out how I had grown spiritually using specific examples and how those things make him feel. He also pointed out how hard I have been trying to be better and grow spiritually and the impact it's had on our home and family. I had no clue he viewed me in that way. I was always afraid he viewed me as a failure since that's how I viewed myself and I was always concerned he would be upset with everything left undone. He complains sometimes when he gets home from work if he's had a rough day so that fed into how I felt. He told me though that he does need to be more careful about that and that he's just being grumpy. It felt good to know that he viewed the spiritual things in greater importance and the physical things, while they're nice, just to don't compare and are not the most important things to be worrying about. Wow, did that take a huge load off my shoulders. The next morning when I woke up my first thoughts and feelings were my usual but then I remembered that those things were not of greatest importance and I did not have to feel that way. I was able to relax and just let those feelings go. I have been so much happier these last few days being able to have my focus on the more important spiritual things. A very unexpected side effect has been the ability to understand the scriptures more clearly because my mind has been cleared. I did get a blessing the other day though because I was feeling horrible again and I just needed to hear my Father's voice and that was very comforting to me. I understand so clearly now how Satan gets our minds and hearts off the path by leading us to believe the trivial things are of greater importance. Sorry this is long but I wanted to share my experience in hope that it can help others who are going through this. I have definitely learned that I am nothing without the Lord, but that through him I can be strengthened and healed. I have also learned that my Father in Heaven is very mindful of me and knows my struggles and the desires of my heart.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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momto5 and soberminded, I do believe that the Adversary knows he can get to us the best when we are physically and/or emotionally tired. I have six children...the last four were less than 3 years apart. I had a 7 yr old, a 5 year old and then I had a baby girl, then 14 months later I had twin girls and 18months after that I had another baby girl. I was tired all of the time and it was difficult not to be discouraged about what I could do. I felt like life was a blur. I just expected so much of myself. If I had to do it over again, I would be less demanding of myself. I used to dust and mop every day and was almost a cleaning nazi. I was in PTA and leadership positions most of the time. I hadn't yet learned the word "no" so was always doing extra stuff for people. Now that I'm a grandmother, I look back and see how silly I was about things. I could have relaxed and enjoyed my family more. I think that the Adversary can keep us so busy and life so noisy, that we don't have time for the Spirit and we get too distracted by the things of the world. Now my motto is "blessed is the life that enjoys the journey".
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Thanks for the post, OI. Things have been really hard for us, since Jan. '10. I will read this to my wie when she gets home. I think all of us could use a Heavenly Father Hug. Wouldn't that be great?
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Momto5, the similarities of your experience and mine is uncanny. I have five children, 10 and under, the youngest being 7months. From homework to house work, i was overwhelmed. Maybe it's the same evil spirit that attacks you is here trying his best on me. He did not expect you'll be inspiring me. Well, this morning i woke up and attacked my housework with a fury, and did everything i felt that has brought me down. My family helped and as kathyn mentioned, it's serving others that makes us feel better. I felt better afterwards.
kathyn, thank you for your wise counsel. I like that motto, infact, i'm thinking i should "create memories" with the kiddos while we're on the journey. Thank you! I felt like i just got a hug from HF.
"When a nation follows unrighteous leaders, the righteous must suffer with the wicked." Ezra Taft Benson
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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sober, I have five kids as well, 9 down to 20 months. I was telling my husband this morning that I realize that my house and it's messiness is not what makes me who am I, it doesn't define me. It felt so good to say that. It felt empowering. What a breath of fresh air! I have been thinking lately about the service thing too and today in Relief Society one of the ladies said that her mother taught her that anytime she was feeling down and depressed she needed to do more service. She said it has made such a huge difference in her life because she forgets about her problems. I was inspired a few nights ago that I need to use my newly developed talents for service to others (basic but I guess I needed to be reminded). Thank goodness for inspiration and for a loving Heavenly Father. It's good to know we're not in this fight alone. We have each other and most importantly Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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In RS today we were given a new book from the General RS pres'y. I think it's going to have some great counsel for us sisters. From my perspective, Mormon women are just about the greatest thing on earth.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Serving others sure does help, but . . . what about when you can't?

Our righteousness isn't based on what we're doing, but on how we're doing it. There are times in your life when you just can't do what you're 'supposed' to. In fact, that's perhaps why many feel like failures, even as they come closer to Christ. Like C.S. Lewis said, we become more aware of what's expected of us and how we don't measure up.

Each of us must be tested in this thing and overcome it. The truth is, we are failures. We can never do it all, at least not in our mortal state. We must rely on Christ. We can overcome the negative feelings this uncomfortable position invokes in us by learning who we are.

We are little children in the eyes of the Lord--His children, He has all the same feelings of tenderness for us as we have for our little ones. We don't berate our little ones for their many deficiencies, we glory in their successes, small though they may be. We thrill when our babies do the simplest things and think they are so smart and precious. The Lord sees us the same way. If we can trust His love for us and accept His sacrifice for us, we won't feel like failures, but successes, because that's what He sees in us.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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More from C.S. Lewis

On the one hand, God's demand for perfection need not discourage you in the least in your personal attempts to be good, or even in your present failures. Each time you fall, He will pick you up again. And He knows perfectly well that your own efforts are never going to bring you anywhere near perfection. On the other hand, you must realize from the outset that the goal towards which He is beginning to guide you is absolute perfection; and no power in the whole universe, except you yourself, can prevent Him from taking you to that goal. That is what you are in for. And it is very important to realize that. If we do not, then we are very likely to start pulling back and resisting Him after a certain point. - C.S. Lewis
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Thank you so much for starting this thread OI. I love the quotes by CS Lewis. He was such a smart man. I have found much comfort from this thread. We need more like them. Its good to self evaluate and be honest with ourselves about where we stand but balance can only be found when we see ourselves in the proper light. So failures and weaknesses aside, it is our efforts and our hearts that make all the difference. We have to learn to be patient with ourselves.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Think: "My house is clean enough to be healthy and dirty enough to be happy"
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Amore Vero wrote:
kathyn wrote:I have six children...the last four were less than 3 years apart. I was tired all of the time and it was difficult not to be discouraged about what I could do. I felt like life was a blur. I just expected so much of myself.


We can become 'oppressed' by even righteous things like raising children, if we have too much of the burden put on just ourselves.

Raising children was never meant to be done by only the wife at home alone all day, it is a job meant for 2, both the father & the mother. We need 'stay at home' fathers as well as mothers, for fathers have an equal responsibility to be home most of the day to help take care of the babies, children, home, meals & cleaning, shopping, etc.

The ideal is that the man not have to work more than a few hours & be home & able to help the wife most of the day. The man's job is to earn a living & the woman's is to have the children. Once the children arrive, the ideal is that both will equally share the duty of caring for those children all day.

Unfortunately in our modern society it is hard to live the ideal & thus mothers & wife's are left home alone all day, with all the children & housework to do by themselves, thus they often get oppressed or depressed for it was not meant to be that way or done by just one spouse. Most people tend to think this is normal or right, but it is not the ideal.

Adam & Eve were meant to work side by side all day, helping each other & being a constant companion to each other. It is not good for either man or woman to be alone all day, especially doing a job that was meant for 2. The greatest happiness is found in doing all we can to live the ideal as much as possible.

One temple sealer told couples he married 'one of the secrets to a happy life & marriage' saying, "Do everything together."


This is how I feel. I'm often envy of the women in the early history of the church because their husbands were home with them. I know I'm not supposed to be envious but it's hard. So the question is how can we bring about this ideal in our current society. We actually started a garden this year and had some success but lot's of failures which I expected. Hopefully each year we will get better and better. I would love to have a large garden, a cow, chickens, and grow our own wheat and oats, or at least be able to barter for them. That way all our food would come from growing and bartering and my husband could stay home most the day while we work together homeschooling, gardening, and cleaning. I want to be able make our own clothes too. This is the life I desire. No stores needed, even cloth diapers and homemade soap for washing clothes by hand. While this would seem like harder work it would be fun for me because I would be doing it with my husband. I have always worked better and happier when working along side with him.
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Just as you summit one mountain you notice another mountain in the distance yet to climb. Many of my weaknesses have become very apparent this week as I have been home serving my wife after she's given birth to our 3rd child. I'm glad I could take a couple weeks off to help though, its been wonderful for all of us. With our other 2 kids I was only able to take a few days off. May God make my weakness strength through his son Jesus!
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Re: Words of comfort for those feeling down on themselves

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Wolfman, I applaud you.
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