This article takes a light-hearted look at what it takes to be an expert sulker.
The first step out of sulking is to gain awareness of what it is to sulk. The remainder of article describes an alternative to sulking.
Sulking is a primitive way to deal to feelings of being hurt. We all know the feeling of being hurt and wanting to withdraw, not able to express how we feel in the moment.
To Be An Expert Sulker Bear the following in mind:
1. It's important to have someone else to blame for your feelings. They should have been able to read your thoughts and know what you wanted without you having to say.
2. A degree of specialness is required. You are the 'only one with feelings' and you have been wronged. Someone needs to be punished. Create a story of how wrong someone has treated you and keep telling yourself that story.
3. While Sulking act out with some other passive-aggressive behavior such as storming off or slamming the door.Let everyone know how mad you are.
4. Keep the sulk going as long as possible.Push away offers of comfort, make them work for it. Hurting yourself more is the best way of hurting them.
5. Hold on to a feeling of entitlement. It's someone else's job to come and make things better. Why soothe yourself when you can wait for ages in victim for someone else do it.
6 Delight your need to be right. It's worth hurting and dis-empowering yourself to have that special moment!
If you get stuck in sulking could try the following:
The Alternative to Sulking:
Step 1: Soothe Yourself
When you feel hurt, take a moment to feel into it and give yourself compassion and love. Reassure yourself that it's Ok to feel hurt and you can give yourself comfort. It doesn't need to only come from someone else. If you want to be nice to someone it's good to start with yourself. It helps to imagine that you have a wise adult part inside that can comfort the hurt vulnerable part of yourself. At first this is hard to do as part of us doesn’t want to give up the longing that someone else will do this for us. Holding a cushion on your stomach helps to soothe and comfort the hurt. Imagine what a good parent would say to a hurt child.
Step 2: Express Your Hurt
Once you have comfort yourself then next step is to express your hurt.
If you feel hurt about what someone has done, it's best to tell them without attacking them. You need to clear your heart of hurts so you can remain open to them.
Tell them what you observed happening without any judgements.
Eg 1. We agreed to meet for dinner at 6 , you have just arrived at 8.30pm
Eg 2. At the party I saw you laughing and joking with Julie
Say how you are feeling and maybe the story you are telling yourself
E.g. 1The story I'm telling myself is that you don't care about me and that is why you didn't call
I'm feeling disrespected
E.g. 2 The story I'm telling myself is that you really like her and don't want to spend time with me
I'm feeling Jealous
Say what you are wanting
E.g. 1 I'd like to know why you are late , why you didn't call
E.g. 2 I'd like some reassurance that you want to spend time with me.
Often people don't speak this way because they fear showing their vulnerability to those they care about. We all have vulnerabilities. It's self loving to accept that sometimes we need attention or feel jealous or need some consideration. If you can say what you need without attacking your partner they are more likely to respond to what you need in a loving way.
Not Ready to Change?
Are you an expert sulker and not ready to let it go just yet?The first step is to notice when you are in a sulk that you are hurting yourself and that you deserve the comfort you can give yourself. Start step by step to parent yourself. You could also consider getting some counseling.
In Summary If you Tend to Sulk
Learn to comfort yourself and express what you feel. If you don't speak up you are setting things up for them to sulk back in turn. Sulking attracts Sulking. Ultimately you need to let go of the inner child dream that someone can get things just right for you. The only person who can do that is you. see if you can comfort yourself first a bit before seeking comfort.