We all have heard this line, “you have no idea what I am going through”. Sure, I may not have any idea, because I am not in your shoes/circumstances. But just because I am not complaining doesn’t mean I have nothing to crib about. The difference is I choose not to. For the simple reason, I don’t think complaining helps. If I complain about anything, the problem is not going to shift out of my life. So why spoil the mood, energy and the moment by complaining. I would certainly do it, if it helped.
I would like to stay miles away from complainers, because they sap your energy and drain you out. One is exhausted by just hearing them although you may not have moved a muscle. Its mental fatigue of a different kind. Not the kind we have when we finish an exam, there is a purpose and fruitfulness in that. I have observed them and wanted to know why some people are always complaining. It’s not that all the troubles of the world are on their shoulders. There are many carrying heavier burdens with a smile on their face.
One of the reasons why some people complain is they want attention. They are attention seekers and by complaining they get that. They will complain about some relatives, their workload, their domestic issues, their health and every other mundane thing. They want to show how troubled they are and we should listen to their problems. Such people like to monopolise the conversation, by always making sure they make their problem seem much bigger than that of the others, so they should be heard the most.
Another trait of such people is that they use complaining as a shield to hide their weaknesses or incompetency. A person who is unhealthy will complain of all issues that prevent them from getting healthy, a person with poor cleanliness will find excuses for their hygiene level, an ill-tempered person will try to justify the reasons for being so. They will not own up or do anything about their deficiencies. Instead, they will complain about everything and make hollow excuses. “Winners make things happen and losers make excuses” –— this quote sums up my point.
I have heard freaked out things like, it’s easy for me to smile because I have nothing to complain about. I don’t even wish for anyone to walk in my shoes, because my journey has been anything but regular. When I hear such things, I remember the classic quote of Albert Einstein, “Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I’m not sure about the former.” My list of complaints (if I had to) would be quite long, to rattle off a few, simple things like getting a good night sleep, to muscle stiffness, to walking issues or even crossing a road. I rather think of things that I can do. But when people say I have nothing to complain about, it does rile me up a bit I must confess. I still resist the desire to set the record straight. It’s a waste of time and energy to argue with such people. They have decided they have the most right to complain. As far as I am concerned, you win.
Most people don’t realise how often they complain because it has become a habit and, like all habits, it tends to be so familiar that it becomes invisible. Such people complain because they want validation for their beliefs. Some might think that by complaining you are merely observing what’s going on, but complaining is much more than just observation. When you complain, you are simply reinforcing negative thoughts and, the more you complain, the more you attract the very thing you complain about.
Complaining also keeps people from taking action. It’s always much easier to complain than to find a solution. Another reason people complain is to avoid responsibility. Think about arriving at work late with the excuse that the traffic was terrible or you had to drop your kid to school because she missed her bus. Sure, such things happens but, perhaps, you could have more prepared.
The real danger for people who are constant complainers is that it traps them in a negative reality, giving them more to complain about. The complainers’ circumstances according to them, are always unfortunate and seemingly beyond their control. But this is simply not true and the reality is that their thinking strategy seriously needs a shake up because they have created their reality to be in sync with their thoughts. And please stop the sympathy and blame game.
I really wish such people would read and learn about the law of attraction. If they only knew they are attracting more negativity in their lives by their constant complaining. If someone told me 1 good reason of the usefulness of such behaviour/thinking, I may join their band wagon. But until then, I rather be a pleasure to meet (in reality and not in mere polite conversation).
“You want to change your life? Stop complaining.” said Mel Robbins and those are my sentiments too. And while the world is focussing on global warming, I would like to add, stop global whining.
Shilpa Bhasin Mehra is an independent consultant based in Dubai
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