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Struggles Only Sarcastic People Would Know

Struggles Only Sarcastic People Would Know

The word sarcasm originated from the word sarkazein, meaning to tear flesh. Today that would be seen as a complete exaggeration as sarcasm is used in everyday small talk. We all use sarcasm for various reasons, yet we use it the most when talking with our closest friends. Of course we don’t intentionally “tear the flesh” of our friends- it’s all in good humor.

Mastering sarcasm is so satisfying; yet speaking in a language that is foreign to many other people can come with a range of struggles. Life is too short to be taken seriously, and as sarcasm-lovers, we take that statement to heart. Here are some struggles that you will definitely relate to if you’re a sarcastic person:

Our Sarcasm Gets Mistaken for Ignorance

When someone states a fact and we respond with “no way!” or “who knew?”, we don’t actually mean it. However, sometimes people don’t know we are kidding and they just stare at us with a look of sympathy. The puns we make aren’t always our real opinions either.

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We Have to Tell People When We are Being Serious

Most of the time, people don’t take what we say seriously because we joke around a lot. But when we do give someone an honest compliment, then they think we are making fun of them. The compliments we give are usually followed by the phrase, “Really, I’m being serious.”

We are Bad at Nailing First Impressions

Being sarcastic is our way of connecting with people. But sometimes it can be too much for someone who doesn’t know us, and then we come off as rude or obnoxious- when in reality, we are just having fun. Our sense of humor is an “acquired taste”. So when it comes to making friends, essentially, our only choice is to find people who are just as brutal as we are.

We Forget That We’re Being Sarcastic

Sarcasm slides out of our mouths so often that, sometimes, we forget we are doing it. So when people ask us if we are being sarcastic, we don’t really know.

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People Immediately Know How We Feel

It takes a lot for us to get truly excited, because usually we respond to activities our friends are going wild about with an, “Oh great”, or “That’ll be real fun, can’t wait.” Even when we are slightly excited about something, we express it with sarcasm, saying something like, “I don’t know. I’ll have to think about it because I only really, really, really, really, really want to do it.” We just don’t understand how people get excited about the most basic things. But since we have a reply for every statement, everyone knows how we feel quickly.

We Have a Hard Time Being Around Super Sweet People

We get nervous around emotional and sensitive people because we are afraid we will say something and accidentally hurt their feelings in a matter of seconds. To be safe, we have to say the words, “I’m just kidding,” after every sentence. When people don’t understand our sense of humor, we do a lot of laughing by ourselves.

We Need a Font Style for Sarcasm

Texting our friends is usually safe. Texting other people puts us at risk of getting our words taken the wrong way. I don’t like emojis, and italics don’t always get the job done. We need a font that conveys our sarcasm.

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We Use Sarcasm to Cover Things Up

We use sarcasm while talking to people we don’t like. While on the opposite end of the spectrum, we use it to humor those we do like. Whenever people hurt our feelings or irritate us, we usually have a comment for them and they don’t know whether it’s sarcastic or not. But we’ll never admit that we deal with bad emotions through sarcasm rather than just simply admitting we’re hurt. We also use sarcasm when we are having a horrible time keeping a conversation going.

We Know We’re Walking on Thin Ice

We are always a little concerned that we are going to get slapped in the face for saying the wrong thing, at the wrong time, to the wrong person. We know we are playing a dangerous game, but we play it anyway.

We Pretty Much Live Two Separate Lives

At work, we are the most considerate, polite people that ever existed. Around our friends, we’re downright honest. I mean, we can’t be ourselves at work. We would get fired for sure if we talked to our coworkers like we talk to our friends. Nothing is more satisfying than finding someone who is as sarcastic as us, as we are with them right away.

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Featured photo credit: Prachi Gupta via salon.com

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

For the original article by Celestine: 13 Helping Points When Things Don’t Go Your Way

“We all have problems. The way we solve them is what makes us different.” ~Unknown

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” – Hans Selye

Have you ever experienced moments when things just don’t go your way? For example, losing your keys, accidentally spilling your drink, waking up late, missing your buses/trains, forgetting to bring your things, and so on?

You’re not alone. All of us, myself included, experience times when things don’t go as we expect.

Here is my guide on how to deal with daily setbacks.

1. Take a step back and evaluate

When something bad happens, take a step back and evaluate the situation. Some questions to ask yourself:

  1. What is the problem?
  2. Are you the only person facing this problem in the world today?
  3. How does this problem look like at an individual level? A national level? On a global scale?
  4. What’s the worst possible thing that can happen to you as a result of this?
  5. How is it going to impact your life in the next 1 year? 5 years? 10 years?

Doing this exercise is not to undermine the problem or disclaiming responsibility, but to consider different perspectives, so you can adopt the best approach for it. Most problems we encounter daily may seem like huge issues when they crop up, but most, if not all, don’t have much impact in our life beyond that day.

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2. Vent if you have to, but don’t linger on the problem

If you feel very frustrated and need to let off some steam, go ahead and do that. Talk to a friend, complain, crib about it, or scream at the top of your lungs if it makes you happy.

At the same time, don’t get caught up with venting. While venting may temporarily relieve yourself, it’s not going to solve the problem ultimately. You don’t want to be an energy vampire.

Vent if there’s a need to, but do it for 15 to 20 minutes. Then move on.

3. Realize there are others out there facing this too

Even though the situation may be frustrating, you’re not alone. Remember there are almost 7 billion people in the world today, and chances are that other people have faced the same thing before too. Knowing it’s not just you helps you to get out of a self-victimizing mindset.

4. Process your thoughts/emotions

Process your thoughts/emotions with any of the four methods:

  1. Journal. Write your unhappiness in a private diary or in your blog. It doesn’t have to be formal at all – it can be a brain dump on rough paper or new word document. Delete after you are done.
  2. Audio taping. Record yourself as you talk out what’s on your mind. Tools include tape recorder, your PC (Audacity is a freeware for recording/editing audio) and your mobile (most mobiles today have audio recording functions). You can even use your voice mail for this. Just talking helps you to gain awareness of your emotions. After recording, play back and listen to what you said. You might find it quite revealing.
  3. Meditation. At its simplest form, meditation is just sitting/lying still and observing your reality as it is – including your thoughts and emotions. Some think that it involves some complex mambo-jumbo, but it doesn’t.
  4. Talking to someone. Talking about it with someone helps you work through the issue. It also gets you an alternate viewpoint and consider it from a different angle.

5. Acknowledge your thoughts

Don’t resist your thoughts, but acknowledge them. This includes both positive and negative thoughts.

By acknowledging, I mean recognizing these thoughts exist. So if say, you have a thought that says, “Wow, I’m so stupid!”, acknowledge that. If you have a thought that says, “I can’t believe this is happening to me again”, acknowledge that as well.

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Know that acknowledging the thoughts doesn’t mean you agree with them. It’s simply recognizing the existence of said thoughts so that you can stop resisting yourself and focus on the situation on hand.

6. Give yourself a break

If you’re very stressed out by the situation, and the problem is not time sensitive, then give yourself a break. Take a walk, listen to some music, watch a movie, or get some sleep. When you’re done, you should feel a lot more revitalized to deal with the situation.

7. Uncover what you’re really upset about

A lot of times, the anger we feel isn’t about the world. You may start off feeling angry at someone or something, but at the depth of it, it’s anger toward yourself.

Uncover the root of your anger. I have written a five part anger management series on how to permanently overcome anger.

After that, ask yourself: How can you improve the situation? Go to Step #9, where you define your actionable steps. Our anger comes from not having control on the situation. Sitting there and feeling infuriated is not going to change the situation. The more action we take, the more we will regain control over the situation, the better we will feel.

8. See this as an obstacle to be overcome

As Helen Keller once said,

“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved.”

Whatever you’re facing right now, see it as an obstacle to be overcome. In every worthy endeavor, there’ll always be countless obstacles that emerge along the way. These obstacles are what separate the people who make it, and those who don’t. If you’re able to push through and overcome them, you’ll emerge a stronger person than before. It’ll be harder for anything to get you down in the future.

9. Analyze the situation – Focus on actionable steps

In every setback, there are going to be things that can’t be reversed since they have already occurred. You want to focus on things that can still be changed (salvageable) vs. things that have already happened and can’t be changed. The only time the situation changes is when you take steps to improve it. Rather than cry over spilt milk, work through your situation:

  1. What’s the situation?
  2. What’s stressing you about this situation?
  3. What are the next steps that’ll help you resolve them?
  4. Take action on your next steps!

After you have identified your next steps, act on them. The key here is to focus on the actionable steps, not the inactionable steps. It’s about regaining control over the situation through direct action.

10. Identify how it occurred (so it won’t occur again next time)

A lot of times we react to our problems. The problem occurs, and we try to make the best out of what has happened within the context. While developing a healthy coping mechanism is important (which is what the other helping points are on), it’s also equally important, if not more, to understand how the problem arose. This way, you can work on preventing it from taking place next time, vs. dealing reactively with it.

Most of us probably think the problem is outside of our control, but reality is most of the times it’s fully preventable. It’s just a matter of how much responsibility you take over the problem.

For example, for someone who can’t get a cab for work in the morning, he/she may see the problem as a lack of cabs in the country, or bad luck. However, if you trace to the root of the problem, it’s probably more to do with (a) Having unrealistic expectations of the length of time to get a cab. He/she should budget more time for waiting for a cab next time. (b) Oversleeping, because he/she was too tired from working late the previous day. He/she should allocate enough time for rest next time. He/she should also pick up better time management skills, so as to finish work in lesser time.

11. Realize the situation can be a lot worse

No matter how bad the situation is, it can always be much worse. A plus point vs. negative point analysis will help you realize that.

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12. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it

No matter how bad your situation may seem, do your best, but don’t kill yourself over it. Life is too beautiful to worry so much over daily issues. Take a step back (#1), give yourself a break if you need to (#6), and do what you can within your means (#9). Everything else will unfold accordingly. Worrying too much about the outcome isn’t going to change things or make your life any better.

13. Pick out the learning points from the encounter

There’s something to learn from every encounter. What have you learned from this situation? What lessons have you taken away?

After you identify your learning points, think about how you’re going to apply them moving forward. With this, you’ve clearly gained something from this encounter. You’ve walked away a stronger, wiser, better person, with more life lessons to draw from in the future.

Get the manifesto version of this article: [Manifesto] What To Do When Things Don’t Go Your Way

Featured photo credit: Alice Donovan Rouse via unsplash.com

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