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Allan Schwartz, Ph.D.Allan Schwartz, Ph.D.
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5 Ways to Achieve Misery

Allan N. Schwartz, LCSW, Ph.D. Updated: Mar 9th 2009

 OK, so this morning I came across this very funny short movie someone sent me from Youtube. When I watched it I laughed and then decided, why fight them anymore when I can join them. It's entitled "Five Easy Ways to Achieve Misery." "Gee," I thought to myself, "these are pearls of wisdom to anyone who really wants to feel miserable." So, to anyone out there who is committed to feeling awful all the time, enjoy this and follow the instructions. To all of you who want to feel better, do the opposite of this list of 5. And, to everyone, have a good laugh.

Five Ways to Achieve Misery:

1. Cling to Entitlement. Take and hold the attitude that the world owes you a living, that life owes you and that others owe you. Do this and you are on your way to true misery.

2. Take everything Personally. Assume there is evil intent in everything that others do that impacts on you. Someone bump into you? It was deliberate. The children acting up at bed time? It's because they don't like you. Your boss sneeze when he walked by your office? It's because he wants to make you sick. Just remember, nothing is trivial or minor, it's all personal.

3. Focus on problems. Review your problems, tell your self that they are impossible to solve, feel sorry for your self. Now you are well on your way. But, wait, there is more:

4. Magnify. Do not maintain perspective. Do not attempt to look at the positive or the good. No, focus on how bad things are and exaggerate how bad they really are. Be really negative and, do not forget this one: guilt is a Wonderful way to feel negative. Add this to the other three and you are almost there.

5. Feel no gratitude. To do this be sure to discount anything good in your life. Focus on your disappointments, mistakes, failures and be certain to completely dismiss any successes and happiness.

Now, if you need one more thing to cement your misery try this: Remember the old saying, "Misery loves company?" Well, share your misery with others. Enlist their support by getting them to share their misery. Now, all of you can be miserable together, bathing in depression and sadness.

It reminds me of a psychology book written many years ago that the author gave a brilliant title: "The Joy of Suffering."

If you want to see and hear the original of this piece of humor and laugh click on this link for Youtube:

I hope all of you had fun, ooops, I mean, I hope all of you felt miserable after this.

Your comments are welcome and encouraged and, this time, I would really love to hear from all of you.

Allan N. Schwartz, PhD


Allan Schwartz, LCSW, Ph.D.

Readers who live in the Boulder, Colorado metro area, or in Southwest Florida may contact Dr. Schwartz for face-to-face consultation. He is also available for psychotherapy through Skype video for those who are not in Florida or Colorado. He can be reached via email at for details.

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