Attention All Complainers: Listen Up!
I knew someone, actually someone I used to work with, who complained about EVERYTHING! Frikkin’ everything! About the unfairness of her being given the worst clients, to having the worst behaved child in the world, to having the most unsupportive husband, and the list went on an on. I can complain with the best of ‘em, but I’m telling you, I was Miss Susie Sunshine next to this woman. The truth is, no one likes to be around a complainer, except well, maybe, other complainers.
Now, we all complain. Hell, it’s normal! But I would like to ask you a question now, if I may… HOW OFTEN DO YOU COMPLAIN? If you don’t know the answer, ask those around you to shed some light. How about your husband, your friends, your co-workers. I’m sure they’ll have a wealth of knowledge to share with you. And I’m sure once you ask, they won’t hold back!
Now by complaining, I don’t mean the times where you share your problems with someone and are genuinely looking for solutions and ways to improve your life. No this is GOOD! I’m also not talking about the times where you candidly discuss failures or disappointments you’ve experienced. We all need a shoulder to cry on, and someone to help kiss the boo boos away, so this is not what I’m talking about.
I’m talking about the useless complaining. I’m talkin’ Fran Drescher on The Nanny! These are the people (some I know well), that are ALWAYS complaining, something like, “My stomach hurts,” “I have a headache,” “I can’t make a decision,” “I think I have diverticulitis,” “The weather is so bad all the time,” “The service here is always slow,” “This wart on my foot just won’t go away!” Oy. It’s the kind of complaining and whining whereby it’s always the same drone with this person. Now, he/she may have deep rooted issues, but I’m not talking about that kind of person today. I mean the genuine complainer. It’s the someone you tell that your child had the flu and threw up 9 times in 1 hour, and they reply with a, “You think YOU had it bad? When my daughter had the flu, she threw up 15 times in an hour and we ended up in the hospital on an IV!” It’s always a one-up-man-ship, and they always have it worse.
Know anyone like this? Are you this person? Ever heard this quote? You gotta laugh!
“Never tell your problems to anyone…20% don’t care and the other 80% are glad you have them.”
— Lou Holtz
So, if it’s you who is stuck in this vicious complaining circle, decide that it’s April, and Spring is always a time for change!
Here are some tips to stop the whining:
- Instead of complaining, focus your attention and energy on problem SOLVING, rather than problem creating. For example, instead of complaining how exhausted you are, try and get to bed earlier and stop piling too much on your plate. Instead of telling people how fat you feel, make the effort to fit the gym into your schedule.
- Every time you’re about to speak and it feels likes a whine or complaint is about to come out, stop, and think again about what and how you’re going to say that thought. Think: is there any point to saying that? I mean really, why complain about something you have zero control over, like the weather?? It’s so futile. People like to be around POSITIVE people, not negative ones.
- Learn how to speak less, and listen more. God gave us two ears and one mouth! Get the hint? And the words you do speak today, test yourself and tell yourself, I will try and not complain for the next week and see how I feel. When you actually rid those negative words from your mouth, you’ll rid the negative energy from your body.
- Think about the misfortunes that exist in our world. Think Haiti, child slavery, young children dying of cancer. It will put things in your own life into perspective. I wrote a blog post about being grateful. Be grateful for what you DO have.
- Think about WHY you complain. Think about all the time you could be spending actually making your life better and becoming a woman of action. If the service is slow at a restaurant I’m in, my husband dies, but I get up, and grab the water and serve myself if I’m thirsty. If the kids need napkins at the diner, I get up and help myself. It’s too easy to complain that people are incompetent, and much harder to do something about it. Think personal responsibility. Think… do you want to give your power over to someone and deny responsibility, or allow responsibility into your life? It’s all a choice.
So ladies, we all complain. We’re all tired. We’re all stressed. The economy has been rough on mostly everyone. All of our husbands are sometimes unappreciative of us. All of our kids complain about the food. We all have shit. But let’s try and not complain too much. I’m gonna try today. That’s a promise.
And tell us ladies, what’s your view on complaining? What do you complain about? Will you try and stop complaining?
Happy Easter to all my readers!! Have a happy long weekend everyone! We’re off to Toronto soon with the kids for the weekend.